We had the good fortune of connecting with Samuel Presley and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Samuel, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I think that sometimes we forget that our passions are what make life worth living. I want my life to be doing what I love to do, and I’ve just decided not to compromise on that. I feel a little bit like it wasn’t a choice for me. I couldn’t imagine living my life any other way than relentlessly pursuing my passions. And for me, that means creating content and using cameras to tell stories and preserve moments.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’ve been pursuing photography since 2014, but I’ve had a camera in my hands most of my life. My mom likes to take pictures. My grandma likes to take pictures. Even my great grandmother passed on a few vintage cameras to me. I just love the process, I suppose. I’ve done live broadcasting, industrial videography for corporations, wedding videos, photoshoots, live event photography and camera operation, podcast production, and all sorts of independent projects and productions. I think what I’m most proud of is my own creative content. Other than being a host on a couple of podcasts, I’m now making content for Youtube, Facebook, TikTok. Instagram, and selling prints and wall art. And all of that content is based around what I love doing the most, which is taking pictures. I’ve gotten to a point where it’s more about making what I want to make now, and that’s been a turning point for me, I think. It wasn’t easy to get here at all. I spent the better part of 5 years or so struggling to find my own style. I was also trying to find what I wanted to create in the first place. Ultimately I think it just clicked, and I found the motivation and the inspiration all at the same time. It’s a ton of work to keep producing, but honestly, I wouldn’t want it any other way. I love the content I create.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I don’t spend a lot of time frequenting bars and restaurants nowadays, but I can recommend some of my favorite spots to get some great photography. Krog Street Bridge is one of my favorite spots. The entire area down there, especially close to Oakland Cemetery. My favorite spot in the entire city, which I make a point to visit every time I can, is the resting place of Dr. King and Coretta King. Jackson Street Bridge is right there. Paying respect to the King is a must-do. The old Ebenezer Baptist building is one of my favorite Atlanta buildings. I love to walk by the old fire station and the King home. That’s the Atlanta site to which I feel the most connected.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My friends and family have been pretty supportive the entire way. I’ve asked them to pose for countless photos and help me film myself for behind the scenes content and all of the other content I’ve been releasing.
Other: Prints available: www.allorastudios.picfair.com
All Credits to Samuel Presley of Allora Studios