Shaina Santos of the #BetterGirls is a multifaceted creative who dabbles in blogging, event planning,modeling, and now photography. Although she is just beginning her journey behind the lens, Shaina’s portfolio stands out because of her ability to capture her muse’s dynamism in every shoot. I had the chance to connect with Shaina last week. During our time together, she told me about her journey to photography, LA livin’, and she blessed me with a photoset that she recently finished.
What is the #BetterGirls?
@thebettergirls started out as a blog to spotlight young women who inspire us by who they are, what they stand for and the love they have for what they do. Now we really want to connect and create with these women instead of just blog about them. The #BetterGirls is simply a space for us. A space for us as women to just support one another. It’s a beautiful thing when women lift each other up and come together.
Sasha Calle By Shaina Santos
What was the inspiration behind this shoot?
My inspiration always comes from my subject. Sasha has such a badass look but there’s also this softness to her. And that’s really what I wanted to capture. We just kind of played dress up and got inspired by her friend’s Hollywood apartment that we shot in. None of it was planned, but that’s honestly how I like to shoot.
How did you begin your journey in photography?
To be completely honest I was on tumblr and stumbled across this dudes page who was traveling in Greece. He posted all these beautiful ass images and they were all taken on a 35mm camera. From then on I just wanted to shoot film. At 22, which felt hella old to me at the time, I had this new desire for photography. It was all I thought about. I didn’t even know where to start, so I wrote in my journal and literally asked God, If I’m suppose to really do this, will you please bring a film camera into my life? A month later I’m chillin at my grandmas house and I don’t know why but I just asked her if she had any old film cameras… sure enough she did. I been shootin with it ever since. It was really on some ask and you shall receive type of shit. No coincidences in life. I truly believe that.
How has that journey been for you?
It’s been a blessing. Up until I found photography, I really didn’t know myself. I was going through life playing it safe and doing what I thought I was suppose to do. I wasn’t doing what I wanted to do. I wasn’t doing what was in my heart. Once I shot my first roll of film I was hooked. I can go on and on about the ups and downs I’ve experienced thus far but what I’ve learned instead is to just trust myself.
Where are you currently based?
I’m currently based in Los Angeles.
What do you miss about the bay?
I miss the people man. Anytime I meet people who I really fuck with out here they are from the damn bay. The diversity, love and acceptance I’ve seen and felt in the bay is incomparable to any other place foreal.
Camera of choice?
Pentax k1000. It’s my baby. Shout out to my papa up in heaven who left it behind just for me 🙂
All photos taken by Shaina Santos.
Model: Sasha Calle
F0r more pictures from the photoset Click Here
Co-founder and the wellness curator, Odilcia is a current 4th year at the California State East Bay. Having been raised in Salinas, CA, she was surrounded by negative stereotypes of the Bay Area. However, because her family lived in the Bay, she had an early appreciation for what the Bay has to offer. Now that she lives in the Bay, she wants to use her insight and love for the Bay Area to help alter the negative stereotypes of the Bay that some people may have. @odilciab