My name is Ronald Benjamin and I'm 22 years old.I’m from a huge Peruvian family and have lived in LA since I was seven. My Mom had a clothing company and our home was filled with rolls of fabrics of vibrant colors and textures. My mom quickly figured out that I wasn't going to be the next best Peruvian soccer player so she immersed me in the arts. I started photography at ten and I have found that so much of the richness of my childhood- the culture, the colors, the feelings, have influenced how I work today. I attended the Art Center College Design in Pasadena California and my work was showcased in my school’s gallery throughout my four years there. When actually started working on my own, I loved to control everything on set, including the fashion, the emotional story, and the lighting as well as the colors. And I also like to be involved in the smaller details, posing of models, the styling, and the textures. I am a huge believer that the small things come together to create the bigger picture. And I like to be right in the middle of it all.
I would have to say, that having the opportunity to work with “W” Magazine, right after college, was a huge accomplishment for me. However, being able to inspire and mentor other aspiring young photographers has been my greatest achievement as a professional photographer.
Last year, I was given the opportunity to direct a commercial for a fashion clothing company. I was so inspired by this, I decided to create and direct my own short film, which will start shooting at the end of August and will be premiere at the end of this year. The film is a response to last year’s Presidential elections told through the eyes of fashion.
TODO DEBAJO DEL SOL
I was inspired by the concept of a polyamorous relationship. I find it to be intriguing how people can find love within a three person dynamic and I wanted to create an editorial based on this personal life-style. I also wanted to incorporate a theme that show cases the Californian heat, so the models were extra sweaty for this shoot. I aimed to create a sensual theme enhanced by lots of lighting, minimal makeup, and messy hair.
I try to make every shoot different from the one before. I try to push myself out of my comfort zone by experimenting with different types of hair styles and makeup. Pat McGrath is one of my biggest inspirations for makeup right now. I like to have fun and bring something new to every shoot.
2017: A REVIVAL
I feel that the 70’s and 90’s decades both have had a heavy influence in current high fashion. Both of these decades were based on street style, which I think have found their way into the high fashion realm.
Growing up, I was surrounded by my family who was involved in making uniforms for health care professionals. The different textures and colors of the fabric used to make the uniforms, inspired me when I was younger and influenced my color palette. Since, I am also from Peru, a lot of aspects of Incan culture inspired my photoshoots. I am very proud to be both a Peruvian and an American citizen, which allows me to create a unique fusion between the two cultures. I feel that I am creating a new story by combining my experiences in Peru and my life in Los Angeles.
60’s Italian Film Director, Michelangelo Antonioni & Actress, Monica Vitti are very significant even in today’s fashion world, in my opinion. Antonioni often sent important messages through his films using fashion to convey the importance of the female as a lead role. Through fashion, he was able to start a conversation that transcended time and is still significant and relevant today.
"You will never know everything in the art world and there is always more to learn. This makes an opportunity to grow and evolve as an artist."
Photographer: Ron Ben @_ronben_
Stylist : Ron Ben
Model: Nadia TWO management. @noodiaa
Freddy NEXT management @freddykeith
Eugene NEXT management @youngrevenge
Assistant: Jofre Francisco @jofrepaulfrancisco
Miah McCarthy @vraiment_nizhoni