Alexandra Chavez is a photojournalist who graduated from Cal State Northridge in 2009. She’s been working as a freelance photographer since 2008, specializing in family portraiture, weddings, and family events. Alex devotes her free time to documenting individuals, communities, and areas of life in her East LA neighborhood. She’s been a very important team member, mentoring more than thirty girls and leading her own photojournalism workshop in Huntington Park earlier this year. Here’s what Alex has to say about her experience volunteering with Las Fotos Project:
“I first learned about Las Fotos Project (LFP) at a photography exhibit in Downtown Los Angeles Art Walk, March of 2011. The photography was amazing, creative, colorful, and heartfelt. I wanted to hear more about LFP and when I learned the main goal is to empower young Latinas through photography I knew then I wanted to be involved in any way possible. I got involved soon after when I became a volunteer mentor in the ‘Nuestra Placita Olvera’ project in May of 2011. In March of this year I created the Las Fotos Project Introduction to Photojournalism Workshop. I do what I can for the organization, because I believe in it and want it to succeed.
Before I discovered my passion for photography my goal was to have a career with children. Las Fotos Project allows me to share my excitement, personal experience and educational background in photography to help guide and positively encourage young girls. It’s great to be able to connect to these young girls with photography; it’s a bonus to be able to relate to them through our mutual cultural background. I know growing up, I would have loved to have taken advantage of the services and programs LFP offers but now as a mentor I am grateful to be able to support and impact the lives of future photographers, like myself.
My goal is to work as a photojournalist at a local newspaper. I want to have my photos make a difference, bring awareness and change for the better. I would also like to continue being involved in LFP as much as possible to see it grow and succeed. For future goals I plan to go back to school and earn my teaching credentials and possibly a Masters in photography.
I love that Las Fotos Project reaches out to young girls and encourages them to express themselves through photography because I can relate and connect on a personal as well as professional level. Las Fotos Project plants seeds of self-empowerment in young Latinas and helps nourish them with hands on experience and support from their peers and mentors. Those seeds are not only influential to the students but to their families and communities when they grow into avid members of society.” –Alexandra Chavez, Las Fotos Project lead Mentor – East Los Angeles, CA