What a treat—Garage magazine has two covers for November, its social media issue. There’s Fil-Am Wil Dasovich repping the growing vlog subculture on the web, and then there’s BJ Pascual, the young photographer who is quite the Instagram celebrity with a whopping 272,000 followers as of this writing.
Or wait—perhaps the better word is “influencer?” Ah, but he winces at the word. However reluctant he is, BJ nevertheless agreed to appear in front of the camera this time, on the cover of Garage, and gamely fielded questions for the cover Q&A.
The cover was shot by Izzy Tuazon and styled by LA Consing on the suburban streets of New Jersey.
Below are seven things we learned about the photographer from his very interesting and candid interview.
1. He likes selfies. “I don’t know about you, but when I follow a celeb’s Instagram, it’s because of their selfies. I want to see them. When I scan someone’s feed, the first photo I click on is a photo of a face, where the face takes up a significant amount of space.
2. “Curated” is another thing he doesn’t like. Apart from disliking being labeled an “influencer,” that is. “The moment you click on a profile or page, at a glance, there’s a story…meron pa naman spontaneity sa Instagram, but it’s common knowledge that it’s a little – I don’t want to say contrived but Instagram is more planned and – I hate this word – curated,” he candidly shares.
3. Liz Uy taught him the art of IG. “We used to tell her ‘ang chaka ng Instagram mo,’ then suddenly her feed became so nice. She taught me how to layout a feed before posting.”
4. These are BJ’s current favorites on IG: @artcomesfirst (a consultancy firm). @nowness, @michelgaubert (‘he’s so funny’), @aiweiwei, @idea.ltd (‘because they post photos books and magazines that they sell’), @tracianne and @trasienne.
5. He’s becoming more active on Twitter again. “There are more followers who interact with me through Twitter. I try to post slice of life things I can’t post on Instagram because it’s “curated.” Whoops, there it is again! Follow him: @BJPascual!
6. He uses VSCO. It’s an third-party post-editing app that well, generally makes your photos better. “I work on my feed using VSCO. Using the grid, my posts are already laid out before I post them. Visually, each image has to connect with others as you scroll.”
7. He loves his grandparents. “Natutuwa naman pero pinakanatutuwa grandparents ko,” BJ says of his growing oncam presence. “At first, they were pessimistic about my career choice but now natutuwa na sila. That’s what matters to me now.”
Check out more photos of BJ below: