Camila Falquez – Growing Pains
Hi my name is Camila Falquez I’m 27 years old I live in New York, originally I’m Colombian I was born in Mexico but raised in Barcelona. I am a photographer and many other things I think…
Tell us about a difficult moment and the tools you used to get out of it
One of the most difficult decision I had to confront as a professional but it also reflects on one as a person. There is a fine line between the professional and the personal. This happened when I stopped working for Scott Schuman who mad the Sartorialist after three and a half years in New York, traveling all over the world Having a job which in the eye of the beholder could be the best job anyone could wish for. And it was very strange, because in spite of all the recognition and attention I got and money I made and all these things we think we want and realizing that that is not what you really want. I didn’t want that. I would call my friends crying from a hotel in Paris, in London. I was in conflict with myself because I didn’t want what I thought I wanted. And it was very, very difficult to one day pick up the phone and tell Scott that I believed in something else. Because in the end, it is a question of values. Why I didn’t want to stay. And Scott, my boss wasn’t able to understand what I meant.And it was me against something so big..that being able to say to him „ I don’t believe in taking pictures of bloggers on the street, I just don’t believe in that and it is becoming very hard for me to want it“ and he said „ What are you saying, I give you a camera I give you money what do you want . I have invested so much in you“ And he is right. I started out bringing his daughters to ballet classes. I organized all of is stock. And he taught me photography. And I knew he had invested in me. But I didn’t want to keep going because I was very unhappy.
Having been able to make that decision was very brave.
Getting out was not at all hard, because my fears, I would keep lists of al my fears ( simulating screaming) During months I was battling with the idea.
My fears were like… I’m not going to find work, nobody will want to work with me. He also made me believe, even though he is an incredibly wonderful person, without purpose he made me believe that I was defendant on him. Like, without me your no one.
I remember that the day after I called him, he yelled, I woke up in the morning and I had nothing to do and it was such a strange feeling that I even remember where I was walking past by while I have this realization. Like „ whoo ooaa AAAA“( laughed out loud) And the weight of world suddenly fell on my shoulders and what was very curious and what I would like to transmit is : , Nothing happens.
After you leave a j or leave something behind. Nothing great and nothing horrible will happen. Nothing happens. Everything that’s meant to keep on going its course will keep going and in the end, you will achieve what you wanted.
I have been very clear and I didn’t want to do what I was doing for him for other people. And so he, literally a couple of weeks ago, he told me that he was very proud of me. That with time he came to realize that I left beach I wanted to do my own thing and I never tried to become a competitor, I didn’t use his contacts, I have done my own thing and that’s why he respects me a lot now. And I am very happy as well that I made that decision. „There is no way I am attending another fashion week „ ( laughing out loud) And that was the hardest decision I had to make as an artist I think.
What does being women mean to you?
Curiously my concept of what it mean to be a woman has changed a lot in the last week.Hasn’t changed, but I have become increasingly conscious in the last week because I have just come from a trip to Dubai. Even though Dubai is one of the more open Arab countries it has the biggest perversion which is the divide between the aerobic values and the most outrages form of capitalism. I was walking around with my mouth open in shock of just the infrastructure. Somebody asked me
„ Have you been to las Vegas? „
and I was like „No „
„ Well, it’s the same.“
„ And? „ We are so far away from America, in a country that has nothing to do with America.
When taking a walking one is surrounded by covered women. That are covered for many reasons, on of which I didn’t know is that it’s not as much religious as it is cultural, for the woman to be respected.You as a woman to be respected, so that you won’t become a sexual object and are heard need to cover your body up.
A girl my age was telling me this, drunk. An English girl that was of Syrien heritage. And she was inviting, how can you not understand it’s for them to respect you. And I couldn’t believe what she was saying. And at the same time girls from there that „ liberate themselves“. And their liberation is capitalist so their idea of liberation is Kim Kardashian.
And you wouldn’t image the boys they had, fake breasts, ass, and lips. Makeup as If fallen into a bowl of paint. And for me that I walk around like this through life. Without makeup, I don’t even remember the last time I used to make up. Trousers, normal nothing wide, right now I’m showing my shoulder but that’ snot my style ( smiles) That I realised, I even wrote my girlfriends an email, who are artist and come from all kinds of background, business women.. I told them, that I feel sorry to become so sentimental but I think it is important for the world that we are the women that we already are . That is something that we are already doing great. You know?
What does it mean to me to be a woman. For me being a woman means wearing as a weapon the rights that many generations have fought to give us. And many nowadays still don’t have. The fact that I can be walking alone through Dubai without any kind of fear. I went to the working class neighborhoods, I went to see construction sites to take pictures and talk to people.
People were like „ Be careful Camilla! „
But obviously, they weren’t going to do anything to me. You are scared because they have put that fear in your mind that because you are a woman you are supposed to be afraid. To me being a woman means wearing a flag: I am free, my body is no limitation for me and honestly, I am very fortunate because I have never felt that. In Europe, you don’t feel that.
My sisters who are mothers told me when you are a mother you realize that the world is chauvinistic. That person take for granted that you are a mother. But until now I hed never experienced any limitation for being a woman and I have also realized that that is not the norm. And that is every shocking.
What would you tell your fourteen-year-old self
No, I see who I was at fourteen and ready diary from that time and I was so naive. Incredible ho much bullshit I had in my head, which is totally unuseful. Haven grown up in a very protected surrounding and even though my parents supported me a lot in my creativity I guess I would have wished that somebody would have whispers dot me in secret that I would become a photographer
„ Start now, don’t waste any of your time. You are going to become a photographer.„
Because nowadays I haven’t studied photography. I think in a way it is quite positive because I am very resourceful because I don’t have academic limitations but I would have liked to have known this way before.
Nevertheless, I educated myself to become a dancer. I was a very good girl. And the only thing I can tell myself, cause I consider that I did a lot of to right.
I was very naive but I wasn’t insecure, I wasn’t pretty nor ugly which I think really helped me. I think that really helped me a lot because. I wasn´t hang up on appearances I was the nice one which leaped me not tout all the pressure on my body. I had friends, who were the pretty girls of the class being only fourteen and then they grow up and they don’t know what to do because they are perplexed that they are not as cute anymore. „ What the fuck am I gonna do now .„ You know?
So I didn’t have that physical limitation for which I am very grateful.
So I would tell myself to stop giving stupid things importance and read that all that doesn’t carry the weight I thought it did.
But being an adolescent is such a hard process. So what I wouldn’t want to do not even for all of the gold in the world is going back to being fourteen.
Your breasts start showing, you grow hairs „ I’m a Gremlin! „ ( laughs out loud ) I guess one wishes that somebody would explain this more to you. If they explain it it’s not useful at the moment. Going through it is necessary. Something I would tell myself is „ Chill, it’s going to be ok!!
There is something a friend of my sister tells her daughter who is in midst of puberty is „ Don’t worry, this not you. You will be another person. Don’t worry, right now you’re going through some things but it will all be ok.
And something like that really would have helped me.
Because I was suffering all the time, being very existentialist ( pretending to scream) It’s necessary to be fourteen years old.
I like a lot of things about me. I get along with self which I think is important. I don’t mind being alone.I laugh alone. I like myself, I have a lot of conversations with myself and I spent a lot of time by myself because of my work.
Another thing I like about myself is that it is important to me that things sit well with me. I like that I am not able to do something that I don’t feel right about. When it doesn’t feel right I can’t do it. That doesn’t mean that I don’t do things that I don’t like. I am very honest in that aspect. I have made a lot of decisions based on my intuition. And I think I have a pretty developed intuition. So I also like the intuition I have.
What I like most about myself is that I like myself. I find myself amusing. I can be ver serious a very silly at the same time. So my friends say that I’m a bit bipolar.
And I like being ridiculous. So I make myself laugh a lot. That’s what I like most about myself.