September Photographer Spotlight: Tom Durante’s Rebellious Photo Journey

Breaking free from the norm is something that we often see artists do on a regular basis. To better capture the world around us, they’re constantly innovating and increasingly looking outside the box to discover new ways of understanding various mediums.

In this month’s Photographer Spotlight series, we focus on just that in the rebellious nature of Tom Durante. From a young age, Durante has gone against the grain of what’s expected of him when it came to the world of photography. Rather than waiting on those around him to guide his photographic future, he took his profession into his own hands from an early age.  

To get the full picture, here’s an excerpt from our conversation:

Here’s an excerpt from our conversation:

AF: What drove your passion to become a photographer?

TD: Cameras have been around me my entire life. In 2009 I got a camera I would use to record video of my friends and I skateboarding. After I put out a skateboarding DVD with my friends in 2014 it seemed that everyone was kind of going their own ways and wasn’t dedicated enough to make another. I picked up a DSLR after that just to capture moments in skateboarding since I could do that on my own terms instead of relying on a bunch of people to go out and spend the day filming. One thing led to another and sooner or later got really involved with the urban exploring subculture in New York City. Between my interest in New York, meeting great friends, and my passion for photography and exploring I stuck with it.

AF: Can you tell me about your journey to where you are today in the photography world?

TD: I first started shooting photos on my dads film cameras for a class in high school. I took absolutely no interest in shooting what I was told to shoot so I ended up dropping out of the class. A few years later when I discovered my own style in what I like to shoot is when things really started taking off. I never had any intention on making a name for myself or making any money with photography. But, throughout the years I have had some incredible experiences such as traveling to Haiti, visiting the roof of a few of the World Trade Center buildings, shooting concerts for famous music artists, and many more all thanks to picking up a camera. I am currently working on a photobook with all of my personal favorite images I’ve shot over the past few years.

AF: What type of photography equipment do you use on a regular basis?

TD: My set-up right now consists of a Sony A7ii, Laowa 12mm f2.8, Sigma 24mm f1.4, Zeiss 55mm f1.8, and a Sony 70-200mm f4.

AF: Do any of your pieces of photography equipment require reliable access to power? If so, which ones?

TD: I am notorious for forgetting to charge my gear at home before shoots and running out of battery while on a rooftop. So when Omnicharge asked if I wanted to work with them and explained their product to me it was definitely a relief knowing I can now charge all of my gear on the go.

AF: How did you come to learn about Omnicharge’s products?

TD: I heard of Omnicharge when I received the email to collaborate.

AF: How often do you use Omnicharge’s products?

TD: I use Omnicharge products every single day that I’m out shooting.

AF: Since using Omnicharge, how have your photoshoots changed?

TD: Since I started using Omnicharge products I stopped getting a mini heart attack every time I forget to charge something. Omnicharge’s portable charger has saved me on countless occasions when I finally make it up to a roof and realize my camera battery is dead or when I’m out on set and running through multiple batteries.

AF: What would you say to other photographers about Omnicharge that are looking for a reliable power source in the field?TD:I would tell anyone who asks to definitely check out Omnicharge. It is an absolute life-saver and well worth the money.