Q&A with Photographer Jeff Mindell

At District, we are all about color. That’s why LA-based photographer Jeff Mindell’s colorful Instagram feed caught our eye. He captures color in a unique way through fashion, interior design and architecture. We caught up with Jeff to learn more about his entry into photography, his current work and how he stays creative.

You can keep up follow Jeff and his adventures on his Instagram HERE.


DC: How did you get started in photography?
JM: This was 100% a hobby for me. A few years back, I was living abroad in London. Having never been out of the country before, the last thing I purchased before I left was a little point-and-shoot digital camera. I had a lot of fun running around Europe that year taking (as I look back now) fairly horrendous photos. My color and composition was awful, but I had a blast experimenting and pushing my own creative boundaries back then. When I got back to the States, I took a few classes in photography as I realized it was something I was super passionate about. (I spent hours and hours in the darkroom developing, and sometimes ruining, exposures when I learned how to use a film camera!) I got involved in my university student newspaper taking photos for stories and shooting events in and around campus. Eventually I started shooting web content for small brands and blogs in Washington, D.C., where I was going to school at the time. After graduation, I made the move to LA, probably the most amazing creative city ever. I started to post photos I’d shoot when I was out and about on Instagram and people seemed to really enjoy what I was putting out there. That platform has proven to be the best for me in terms of generating new business connections and collaborations!


DC: What type of camera do you use?
JM: For the past few years, I had been shooting with the Canon Rebel T2i that I got as a gift from my parents years ago when they saw how happy taking photos made me. Last year, I saved up all my pennies (many, many pennies) and finally upgraded to the Canon 5D Mark III. It has made a world of difference in terms of the quality of images I’m able to capture and efficiency in my editing process.


DC: What are some of your favorite places to shoot?
JM: This is a tough one. Cliche outdoor environments like the beach don’t really excite me. I love more than anything to shoot beautiful interiors, really any spaces with amazing natural light. I also thrive with urban backdrops and really more than anything, the desert. And then there is the aspect of color, something that I fully blame on my wife. She spearheads a brand that is drenched in color and now so am I. Until I met her, my entire world and aesthetic was just very neutral and minimal and you still see that in many of the photos I share on Instagram. I’ve come to learn that bright and oftentimes loud imagery really makes people happy and that’s what I’m all about.

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DC: What are some of your favorite things to shoot?
JM: Interiors, architecture, lifestyle-type stuff

DC: How do you stay creative?
JM: I am CONSTANTLY on sensory overload in my life so I don’t find it too hard to stay creative. I try to surround myself with people that inspire me and push me to be better, which only helps. A while back, I told myself that if there was nothing of interest going on that day, go out and make it happen. If there’s a day where I’ve accomplished nothing, I feel like a failure. Even if it’s just taking a photo, seeing something new, doing something outside my comfort zone, get up and do it. I hate resolutions so much, but my new year’s resolution for 2015 was to say ‘Yes’. Jump into any and all opportunities available to me. You never know who you’ll meet or what tomorrow will bring.