We had the good fortune of connecting with Emmanuel Lupercio and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Emmanuel, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
I was born in Tempe and raised in Phoenix, Arizona. I have lived in Arizona my whole life, and have actually really enjoyed it here. Both my parents are from Mexico, they became US citizens and came to the US for a better life. They had my older brother, then me, and later on two more siblings. My house was always filled with love. I had a great childhood. What I remember most is that we would always go to Mexico on weekends to visit my grandparents and go to our ranch where we had horses, goats, chickens, and cows! I loved the outdoors and was always ready for an adventure. My mom was always taking photos of our trips and just our lives in general. She has so many photo albums that I love looking at from time to time. That is what inspired me to become a photographer. I remember always looking at photos and being fascinated by how they were taken. I got my first camera in high school. It was a really simple digital camera but I loved it. I started to photograph just random things from my life and I have to admit they were not great, but you have to start somewhere right? I remember telling my parents I wanted to study photography and my mom was very supportive about it and my dad was as well but he wished I had studied something more “professional” but in the end, he learned that photography can be a professional job and gave his full support. I was so happy. I studied photography at ASU from 2014-2018, they were the best years of my life. While in college I discovered myself as an artist. I was fascinated by both conceptual and portrait photography. My schoolwork mainly consisted of exploring my identity crisis with being Mexican American and the beauty of being Mexican American. Outside of school, I loved fashion/portrait photography and would take photographs of my friends and also book some clients. This all comes back to who I am right now. I am in the process of merging both my conceptual work and portrait work as one.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I mainly work freelance. Most of my business is done through Instagram. I do a lot of self-promotion on there and people begin to share my work and I start getting clients. I also try to reach out to brands to help them out with their content. I love working with people, and always love to bring out the best in people. Whenever we shoot my main goal is to make sure the model/client is comfortable to be themselves. From there the shoot is always fun and professional. Having studied photography, I always incorporate everything I learned into my photos. I am always looking for inspiration and to make my client’s vision come to life. Due to the pandemic, I do have to admit it has been tough, but this is a reminder that there will always be things that will set you back and it motivates me to come back stronger. I am also in the process of launching my own clothing brand soon. It will focus on Mexican-American and Arizona culture with the longterm goal of creating a creative community of Mexican American artists here in Arizona.

Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
There are so many places! I would recommend hikes such as South Mountain, A Mountain, and Papago Park. Also visiting the Phoenix Zoo and Desert Botanical Garden. Make sure to check out Downtown Phoenix, Roosevelt Row, Downtown Tempe, Downtown Gilbert, etc. Here is a list of places to check out!

Art: Phoenix Art Museum, Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, ASU Art Museum, ASU Northlight Gallery, The Sagrado Galleria.
Great Breakfast places: Daily Jam, Snooze, Matts Big Breakfast, Luci’s
Lunch/Dinner Spots: Original ChopShop, Taco Chelo (Good Tacos and Drinks!), Green (Good Vegan Food!), Oreganos (Best Pasta and huge salads!).
Coffee Shops: Mythical Coffee (Good Matcha!), Driftwood Coffee, Futuro ( Beautiful spot), Tres Leches ( Good Pan Dulce, Mexican Decor), Azukar Coffee (Mango Chile Limonada!).
There are soo many more places to check out, but I’m going to keeping it short because I can go on and on. I love checking out local spots because each one is unique and also you are supporting local businesses.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My photography professor Liz Cohen. She began teaching at ASU when I was a Junior in College. The first class I took with her was Portraiture Photography. She always pushed me to become a better photographer and was the first professor to help me merge both my conceptual work with my fashion work. She was also the first professor to show us the work of current emerging photographers, and it motivated me to see that you can still make it out there because in other classes we always would look at the same old photographers from years ago. She always gave me the best constructive criticism and always found ways to help me get better in my art. I ended up taking classes with her my whole senior year. She is truly the best thing that has happened in the ASU photography department and I will always be so appreciative of her mentorship. If you go to ASU, I highly recommend taking a class with her!

Website: https://eluperc2.wixsite.com/emmanuellupercio
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/96xel/
Other: My website is in the works. I should have my domain soon! My upcoming brand Instagram is @prolificoclothingco Email: emmanuellupercio18@gmail.com

Nominate someone: ShoutoutArizona is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.