PHOTOGRAPHER TO FOLLOW: @_sabrinasantiago

PHOTOGRAPHER TO FOLLOW: @_sabrinasantiago

Meet the Ryan McGinley-backed photographer capturing New York's stories one frame at a time.

Meet the Ryan McGinley-backed photographer capturing New York's stories one frame at a time.

Text: Brandon Tan

Sabrina Santiago is a 22-year-old, NYC-based photographer whose genre of capture is hard to identify not for its ambiguity, but for its distinction. Sans the elaborate production of editorial, or the full candidness of street photography, she walks a fine line between the two types; a line ambiguous and largely unexplored, leaving it open to possibilities. Santiago is barely in a studio, but always on the streets. Eyes peeled with her Yashica film camera in-tote at any given moment, she shoots her subjects everywhere from Coney Island to the roof of her own apartment building in the East Village and the neighborhoods in between. Skate parks, park parks, school buses and stairwells have all served to Santiago as backdrops. New York is her set, the sky her seamless.

Santiago’s photographs, though frozen frames, tell an active story, a relationship between subject and space. She celebrates her muses; their oddities, peculiarities and spirit in a way that accents the physical space occupied. Currently, the photographer has several long-term series in progress, two of which, among others, she has dedicated locations: The Williamsburg Bridge and her aforementioned roof. These quintessential New York scenes are put into dialogue with their quirky companions, both subjects of equal significance to Santiago’s lens. Though perhaps not in a traditional sense, she is in fact a documentarian.

In conversation with V regarding her series of works, Santiago expresses, “I want to document different faces, different seasons and different times of day in these places. I am working towards accumulating enough documentation via polaroid, 35mm and super 8 to feel like I’ve documented these spaces in a way that I feel truly represents them to me!”

Identified as an emerging talent by revered names like Ryan McGinley and Polaroid Originals, and commissioned by major labels including retail giant ASOS and downtown-rooted Dolce Vita, Santiago is making a name for herself. A name you’ll be sure to remember.

Follow Sabrina Santiago on Instagram here

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