The 505 – Steven St. John

Steven St. John

The name says it all: 5 questions, 5 images, in an echolocation allusion to the primary area code of New Mexico. The 505 is an interview format highlighting ASMP photographers, new and emerging. 

Where did you grow up and how did you come to live in New Mexico? I was born and raised in Albuquerque, my parents came here in the 1970’s when my father took a position teaching at UNM. When I first starting getting into photojournalism in high school, I thought it would take me far away from home, and it has, but my work has also helped give me a love for the light and culture in New Mexico. There is nowhere I would rather call home.

© Steven St. John, 2008

What lessons has photography taught you? Like many photographers, I was a fairly shy kid. The camera gave me an excuse to be places I never would have gone and the purpose to go, and from that I’ve made friends I never could have known. I feel like I’ve learned everything in my life because I carried a camera, and it licensed me to look at things and ask questions. I’m still learning about life, through the camera.

© Steven St. John

What person has most influenced you, or your photography? Can you describe him or her? I’d like to say the entire photography staff at The Albuquerque Tribune, but since the question asks for one person, I’ll say Mark Holm. Mark let me come in as an college credit intern shortly after he had been hired as Director of Photography. If he had turned me down, I’m not sure what I would be doing today.

© Steven St. John

Do you have any passions or talents outside of your work? I’d like to list travel as a passion, but if I couldn’t bring a camera, I’m not sure I would want to go. Some day I would like to learn to play bass guitar, but I haven’t yet made the time. My passion these days is spending as much time possible with my nieces and nephew, car trips with my dog Boo and sipping IPA with good friends.

© Steven St John

If you could photograph anyone or anything living now or at any point in history, who would it be and why? What camera would you want to use? Too many possibilities! I guess if I had a time machine I would go make a portrait of Jesus. I’m not religious, but maybe that experience would change that, and think of the licensing fees for all those Bibles. And since I have that time machine I’d like to shoot on large format Kodachrome and be able to get it processed.

Contact Steven St. John:

Twitter: @sstjohnphoto
Instagram: @sstjohnphoto