For multi-faceted visual expert, Barry Daly, photography is a pure form of talent. Creating art that’s percolates a clear vision and beauty found in the Black community is like breathing with intention, photography is a meditation.
The Los Angeles Sentinel had an exclusive interview with Daly, capturing the depth of what it takes to capture the essence of Black people. “I’m from Orlando, Florida, but I’ve lived in seven different states—more cities than I can count,” Daly stated, he’s transitioning to Los Angeles to build a legacy in photography.
Daly focuses on the story in photography, he contemplates the composition and what his pictures are saying. “I started playing around with the camera when I was like six because I was like, ‘oh, I want to make a movie.’ It didn’t go well,” he continued, “It was a thing that I did with my siblings.” Daly started to approach photography with a serious commitment in high school. During that time, he was mastering graphic design; everything Daly promotes professionally is self-taught.
At first, Daly would hunt for the perfect focal point to pair with his graphic design creations. The era of Tumblr arrived, and the pictures Daly captured began to have their own weight and stand on their own.
“I’m someone who wants to free imagery—that makes people feel things, see themselves and love what they see, essentially.” Daly has been capturing images consecutively for 11 years.
Beyonce played her usual role of inspiration; her album, “Lemonade,” ignited the flame in Daly’s eyes to always depict the beauty in Black people, as shown through the display in Beyonce’s work.
“When Beyonce released lemonade, that was when I began to see a shift in focus. My focus has always been to provide Black people with the ability to see themselves and love what they see,” Daly continued, “But Lemonade was that eye-opening moment of how do you present emotions? How do you present the beauty in those emotions? And how do you remind Black women first, that they’re valued, they’re seen and loved by Black men? Can’t speak for all of them. But I can speak for myself.”
Daly narrowed down his creative process, he stated, “My process starts first, in the camera— everything starts there. I don’t believe that our view of others should be altered so much.”
He continued, “it should all start with who you see right in front of you— in the moment, being able to look into their eyes and see that glimmer, that spark that tells you, ‘I’m alive’ type of thing. So, it starts there, making sure that I can catch that sparkle in their eye.”
In the editing stages, Barry starts with the skin tone first, nothing comes before getting the optimal hue on melanin skin. “If I can get the skin the exact tone that is in real life. I don’t care what else happens.” Daly looks to unearth the comfort someone has in their skin, within the picture.
Follow Barry Daly on Instagram @itsbarrydaly and view more of his gallery at bio.site/itsbarrydaly