Joebert Tupas is a Queer Filipino Photographer Based in New York. Interested in deconstructing societal and gender norms, queer narratives and anything weird! Currently enrolled in the School of Visual Arts in New York City getting his Masters in Fashion Photography.
“I was raised in the Philippines in a conservative, religious environment. I knew I was different since preschool but I was afraid to ask questions or express myself because I knew that others who were “different” and did the same were often mocked. I felt so alone. I wanted to be like everyone else. If I was able to see queer people embracing their sexuality and living their truth, I wonder if things might have been different.
I started this photo series to explore a more sexual side of me. I’ve always known that I was a sexual person but I was so afraid to express it just because of the conservative norms I’m used to. This photo series is a preliminary stage of that exploration.
I cast some models and organized a photoshoot, explaining my background and the intention of the project. I let the models know that they can do anything within their comfort level, and always made sure I had their consent before moving forward.
I wanted to give the models garments and accessories that I was drawn to, to see how they would react in them. It is difficult for me to define what sexy is in a photo. It could be an attitude, a physical feature, an energy, or simply someone being comfortable in their own body. I don’t know exactly what I’m going to get from this project, and that’s what makes it fun and exciting to me. It’s an exploration of my point of view as a photographer, the models, and the garments that I put them in.”