#WhyIRide: Aundre

Aundre Larrow, 24

How long have you lived in New York?

I moved January 7, 2014.

Very exact. *laughs* What brought you to San Francisco recently?

I traveled there for work to do a mandatory culture event. It was my first time to the city.

Nice. What are some things you do for your job now besides take photos?

I make content strategy, art direct, write, and Snapchat.

Have you always wanted to be a photographer?

Nah, not always. When I was really small, I wanted to be some doctor/lawyer fusion thing because it’s something you’re used to.

It was a three part thing that lead me to becoming a photographer. There was this girl that was really into me who was a really talented photographer. I would watch her shoot and learn from her. Then my high school theater teacher, who taught photography, gave me an old camera. I would shoot with that. And the guy I looked up to a lot was also into photography. We would go together sometimes. I would try to emulate him.

What’s your journey been like as photographer so far?

I didn’t want to be a photographer, even when I started doing it more. Then at some point, I was working in a college newspaper and was ok with taking photos. I was shooting a lot of shows and realized I could make some money maybe. I felt more confident with it.

When I graduated, I didn’t feel super strongly about anything. I really liked shooting, but I didn’t know how I could make a living from it. As I learned how to work with brands from doing a Grooveshark internship to moving to New York, that’s when I was like, “Oh ok, this is a real thing.”

That makes sense. What do you like about photography?

You can get really intimate. There are a lot of different ways you can tell stories. You can get up in someone’s face. You can go afar. You can follow someone around and show a viewer a side that they don’t normally see.

There’s this quote, “A painter will construct a reality, but a photographer has to pull something beautiful from what already exists.” Which is a little dramatic, so I wouldn’t necessarily lean on that, but I still find it really interesting. That all things we see normally, getting to touch them in different ways and move them is very cool.

How would you describe your photography style?

I was hanging out with one of my friends that other day. He said my work was like Superman and his work was like Batman. “Your stuff is really happy and joyful,” he said. And I was like, “Nah, man. I don’t like that at all.” First off, Batman is way better than Superman.

My work is really how I see the world. Although we all have a gamut of emotions, we have enough negativity. I try to have my work be positive as possible.

I also try to be diverse. One of my goals is to show men, women, people of different races, and everything enjoying life in similar ways. Subtly, I’m reminding the world, “Hey, all these people are people.” Nobody is crazy or weird or whatever. Actually, we all are crazy and weird, but we’re unified. Hopefully my work is diverse, joyful, and unifying.

That’s beautiful. And last question, what was your most memorable trip while using Uber?

I went for a hike, and my girlfriend and I slept in really late. We had planned to meet some friends at 8. We were going to get up at 6, but that did not work. We woke up too late and were eating bagels stressed out. But then she called an Uber, and it was glorious. We finished our breakfast quietly in the Uber and arrived happily. Got out and went on a hike. It was really nice. It was good to have that chill moment in the morning.