Born and raised in Santa Barbara, California, Sandy Porter’s roots in photography originated in this small town famous for Brooks Institute of Photography, where Sandy was once employed. Contrary to his photographic aspirations, Sandy studied literature and screen writing at UCSB. While attending UCSB for his BA in English, Sandy had the opportunity to study writing scripts for movies with his mentor Paul Lazarus, former Columbia Studios VP. He credits Lazarus to being the key to helping him learn to tell a story visually.
Sandy is well known for his signature cinematic fashion portraits. His chiaroscuro style contributes to the drama and emotion while also helping to create a subtle story. He loves to make the viewer of the photograph wonder “what is going on here? what is this person feeling?” While attending UCSB, Sandy had an opportunity to work at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. His unorthodox photography education consisted of spending 40-hours a week surrounded by art from classics to Americana, Impressionistic to Contemporary. The brain is like a sponge that absorbs and collects everything we see in a kind of visual database and this data resurfaces in his photography, he will tell you.
His professional photography training was strictly self taught and trial and error. At some point, he packed up for NYC to make it or break it. He was studio manager for a prominent European photographer in NYC and continued his apprenticeship assisting for a number of LA studios. Sandy’s photography was recognized by the California Newspaper Association “Best Fashion Advertising Photo.” He has been published worldwide in Italian Vogue Photo, Cosmopolitan, Santa Barbara Magazine, Spicy Magazine, Mallard Magazine (cover), among others.
Based in Los Angeles, Sandy also works extensively in Bangkok, Thailand, NYC and Florida. He is responsible for the editing of all of his photos to date.