AJ Marino is a commercial photographer and photojournalist based in South Lake Tahoe, CA
I was compelled to tell stories of humans interacting with themselves, the planet, and their emotions in 2012 when I picked up my first camera. Telling these stories has become the most impactful force in my life. I grew up in the high mountains of California, instantly awestruck to the eerie and mysterious force that attracts us to these places. Why do we feel the drive to expend ourselves to a challenge, to a summit, or to new experiences? I’m drawn to a calumniation of filmmaking, compelling photography, and brand asset creation to explain what it is like to be simply human.
I have been lucky enough to make a living for myself with a camera in tow. Whether skiing steep couloirs to show an athlete’s dedication to the sport or telling the story of a brands ideas and motivations. I pride myself on creating real images, in real places. A viewer should be able to feel emotion as they look at a photograph. The wind whipping the ridge as a skier reaches the top of their line, the features of a new product that a brand spent countless hours revolutionizing, or a story of despair in print. I realized early on that these emotions not only mean the most to me, but they tell the story of the people that constantly evolve around these emotions as well.
I was born and raised in Meyers, California, a small suburb of South Lake Tahoe. At six months old I received my first ski pass to Kirkwood Mountain Resort, unknowingly my entire life was going to revolve around the mountains. Growing up in the Sierra Nevada of California was a blessing. At a young age, I learned the ropes of mountain travel. Going to Yosemite to climb with my Dad and backcountry skiing with friends formed a deep respect for the areas I loved the most. A passion for telling the story of these places and people emerged. At thirteen I received a point and shoot camera and ran around with my friends shooting everything I could. Eventually giving way to bigger and better equipment, I started my professional career at 19 years old. With the same passion for the high peaks of California; I would go on far off adventures and create content for Mountainsmith, The Wall Street Journal, ESPN, Altra, Blue Diamond Growers, San Francisco Chronicle, Novus Select, Sierra At Tahoe, X-Games, Tahoe South, Grand to Grand Ultra, Tahoe Trail Bar, and Arcade Belts. I often find myself being outside without a camera and enjoy skiing, climbing, mountain biking and fly fishing. I am now 22 years old and still base my career out of South Lake Tahoe, Ca
My favorite things in life include: Chairlift rides with friends, burritos, campfires after a long day, playing guitar, reading, hysterical laughter, stupid jokes, Tikka Masala, stetson wool hats, wild places, and always telling a good story.
I hope that my images exemplify the obsession I have for telling stories, conveying emotion, and creating art that stands true to me. It is my life’s work and I am more than excited to share these moments in time with you.