Artist Statement - Paolo Cascio Photography

Artist Statement

Every artist can probably tell you when they had their "moment"... call it an epiphany, a revelation, or a moment of inspiration when they made a decision to pursue their passion. That moment came for me when I was 16 years old and witnessed a movie being filmed in San Francisco during a family vacation.  At the time, it literally felt like the sky opened up and I was blasted by a sonic bolt of lighting thrown by the Greek God of Thunder, Zeuss.  Little did I know at that time I would eventually end up behind a camera and working in Hollywood.  But I did!  And since that moment, I have wildly and passionately pursued every creative thought and idea I have had for the past four decades.  For me, learning photography was a bit unconventional compared to most.  I listened to a cassette tape and followed along with images in a book, learning composition, lenses, lighting and how to develop film and make prints.  

Working for the newspaper at my junior college provided me a good foundation in photojournalism where I shot local stories, football games, and concerts.  Following that,  I attended film school and then landed my first job in the movie industry, where I prepped camera gear at a major rental house. Early 1986 started my freelance career working on commercials and documentaries, and moving onto feature films with legendary director John Hughes and a tv series with Oprah, and doing commercials with many Chicago sports teams and the Super Bowl Bears.  After a 17 year career in Chicago, I was longing for something more, and left for Hollywood where I was exposed to the "major leagues”.  Working at the big studios with big crews, big stars, and traveling was all incredibly exciting and awe inspiring to say the least. But after a 10 year run in Hollywood, I eventually found myself longing for more.  I was searching for something more than just a paycheck and for projects intended strictly for entertainment.

Starting my own company was a little scary, but proved to be the best decision I ever made, giving me a renewed sense of excitement to express myself as an artist, and find projects that inspire me and have relevance and significance.  While there have been many challenges, the rewards have been incredibly satisfying.  Throughout my journey,  mentors and positive quotes have encouraged me  through the challenges I have faced, as well as my faith.  Helen Keller once said, "the only thing worse than being blind, is having sight without vision” which is my all time favorite.  My father is my hero, and has been telling me since I was a kid, “a calm sea never made a skillful sailor”, and "you can never control when an opportunity comes along, you can only control how prepared you are when it presents itself."   Incredible words of wisdom that I will continue to carry with me forever.

I love that my work is constantly taking me in new directions, whether I am shooting commercials, documentaries, products, headshots or events, I throw my heart and soul into everything that I do.  I enjoy traveling to new destinations and exploring new horizons, and I love the creative process, the collaboration with others, and to discover and pursue each and every opportunity that comes my way.   As a Christian, I feel a strong sense of responsibility to  give back whenever I can, so I often dedicate my time serving veterans, non profits and charities.  I hope to have an opportunity to hear from you, to collaborate, and to create something fun and exciting we can be proud of. I sincerely thank you for your time and consideration....

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