Joseph Moché is a travel and fine art photographer based in Southern California. Though he always enjoyed taking snapshots, he began taking photography seriously after seeing Antonioni's Blow Up. He enrolled in Jerry McMillan's Intro to Photography course at San Fernando Valley State College. Unfortunately, changing his major from Psychology to Art would have caused the loss of his student deferment and a government-sponsored trip to Southeast Asia.
Upon his retirement from teaching in 2016, Moché was finally able to devote time to his photography. That time is spent both creating new works and rediscovering images captured over the past 50 years.
The dreaded artist's statement. I've read many. I've yet to find one that doesn't sound contrived, or pretentious, or both. It's inevitable, really. There is no way that I can think of to explain what goes through my head when I create and manipulate images without the explanation sounding contrived. But, I've been doing this for over 50 years, and it's clear to me that there are recurring motifs. Let's just say that much of my work is highly derivative. I create images that remind me of others I have seen that impressed me. Sometimes it's a look, but most often it's a mood.
I remember the first picture I ever took. It was in the 3rd grade on a class field trip to the Museum of Natural History in New York. I had an ancient box camera that my mom let me take and 1 roll of black and white film. I used up the whole roll on the dinosaurs. The pictures were dark and blurry. But they were mine. I managed to save enough to buy a "real" camera: a Kodak Super 27. Then a Yashica twin-lens reflex at an LAPD auction. And finally, a used Canon FTb.
Had it not been for that Canon, my interest in photography might have died. But the camera led to a friendship, and the friendship led to spending time in his darkroom. That cemented it. There were so many things you could do in there! So as soon as my wife and I purchased our first house, I took most of the garage and built a darkroom.
The birth of our son necessitated a larger house, and the darkroom was left behind. I kept shooting, but my inability to see anything more than contact sheets caused my interest to wane. It was another friendship that caused me to purchase a digital camera and start shooting again.
The images I have chosen for the portfolio shown here are an accurate representation of my body of work. If I had any idea where those dinosaur pictures were, they would be here too.