Vincent Balgemino is a junior communication studies major from Los Angeles. He is a photographer and filmmaker who has earned himself a place in the Top 5 at Campus Movie Fest — the world’s largest student film festival — two years in a row. Vincent is also the photographer for Student Life and Engagement on campus.
Kate Sagara: How did you become interested in photography and filmmaking?
Vincent Balgemino: I really only started taking photography seriously when I entered college. My first year, I was actually in pre-law. But I got into the world of media through Campus Movie Fest. My friends and I entered the competition and then our film ended up being one of the winners. One of my professors named Pedro Lange Churión taught a class on medieval literature, and I learned more about film than literature. That was another reason why I started liking film a little bit more. The summer between freshman and sophomore year, Student Leadership and Engagement offered me the position of photographer. Something I really enjoy about my job is just meeting people and taking pictures of people.
KS: Are there any other mediums you’re interested in?
VB: Movies. I had a MoviePass this summer and I watched 30-plus movies.
KS: What are your favorite genres of movies to watch?
VB: I don’t think I chase genres. I chase art style. For example, I’m getting really into A24 films, which is a production company based in New York. I really like “BlacKkKlansman,” “Crazy Rich Asians,” “Sorry To Bother You,” “Hereditary” and “Eighth Grade.” Last year, I really, really liked “A Ghost Story” and “Call Me By Your Name.”
KS: Who are some of your inspirations?
VB: I’m not very knowledgeable about the film world. Some people that I look up to are people who I work with at school. For example, Caleb d’Oleire, Riley Evans, Miles Herman and Jackie Lee. I would say my inspirations are just like-minded people and people who are passionate about film. It’s fun seeing their passion because it makes me passionate, too.
KS: Do you ever get creative block, and what do you do about it?
VB: All the time. Whenever I reach a creative block, I try to simplify it and answer questions like: Why am I making this? Who am I making it for? Why do I want to make this?
KS: Do you ever feel like you put too much pressure on yourself?
VB: Oh, yeah. I am the Student Life photographer, and I’m infatuated with this school. I love USF. I put a lot of pressure on myself in making sure that all my photos represent the school. The way I see the school, I really want other people to see it the same way.
KS: What do you hope to do in the future?
VB: Post-college, I don’t want to do any type of photography. For now, photography is just a means for me that helps me pay rent, but post-college I think my vocation is within the film industry. Maybe it’s not even on the creative side, but I just love being around creative people.