SAN ANTONIO- Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) men’s soccer player Chris Marcus expanded his passion outside of athletics his freshman year.

Chris Marcus began his freshman year at OLLU in August 2019. He is a kinesiology major and a student-athlete on the men’s soccer team. Within his freshman year, Marcus began to take an interest in photography due to his uncle’s passing.

Photo credit: Chris Marcus

His uncle, Chuck Ramirez, was a well-known artist in San Antonio. Ramirez’s art influenced Marcus.

“I never knew the impact my uncle had on the art community here in San Antonio until after his passing,” said Marcus. “It was then that my interest began to increase in photography.”

Initially, he could not afford a digital camera, so he used his mobile phone for all of his photoshoots.

“I struggled to identify myself as a photographer and was pretty embarrassed,” said Marcus. “I think that time spent only having my phone helped me as a photographer more than anything. Years later, I found an old beat-up Pentax my uncle used to shoot on, fell in love with shooting film, and here I am.”

Photo credit: Chris Marcus

In search of an outlet to express himself without words, finding his uncle’s Pentax was Marcus’ deciding moment to pursue photography as a passion. He has also acquired a Canon A1 for shooting 35-millimeter film and a Mamiya RB67 to shoot 120-millimeter film in addition to his uncle’s Pentax 645.

“Shooting film felt more like art to me than shooting digital,” said Marcus. “Finally, having a camera gave me the confidence I needed to really start putting myself out there as a photographer and artist.”

Marcus prioritizes spontaneous photoshoots that involve taking photos with color that express himself or tell a story. He does not plan shoots out with people, but he hopes to in the future. Marcus also strives to shoot in a studio.

“I try my best to avoid photos that people are used to seeing,” said Marcus. “Complete originality is almost impossible, but I do my best to stand out.”

Photo credit: Chris Marcus

Along with taking photographs, Marcus also edits his work using Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop.

“When I started off taking pictures on my phone, I loved editing,” said Marcus. “Seeing how I could transform an Apple iPhone picture into something entirely different. People had no idea I shot them on a phone. However, taking on film, I don’t feel the need to edit my photos as much.”

Marcus now refrains from editing as much as he can and now edits only to correct mistakes or adjust colors based on the atmosphere he wants to create. Marcus said that the imperfections that shooting on film gives are what make it so unique.

His uncle was the ultimate role model and inspiration. Marcus believed that Ramirez’s unique style and creativity in the way he captured a person’s “portrait” made him stand out. Besides his uncle, music is Marcus’ biggest inspiration.

Photo credit: Chris Marcus

“Nothing puts me in my creative element more,” said Marcus. “I listen to music before a shoot, sometimes during, and I always listen to music while I edit.”

To follow Chris and his work, visit his Instagram page @chris_m4rcus.

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