Featured Contributor: Photographer Corina Esquivel


As freelancers, you are constantly searching for things to inspire you and your work. Today more than ever, freelance photographers are having to find these inspiration sources in between busy schedules and constant travel. We scour Instagram feeds, and follow others around the world to feel more connected to the creative world. Aside from capturing and sharing beautiful content, the overall goal we pursue is sometimes simply finding a sense of home and community. 

While we're talking about getting inspired, we’d love to introduce you to photographer Corina Esquivel. Corina joined Shutterstock Custom (formerly Flashstock) in February 2015 and since then, she’s moved from rainy Vancouver to rainy England. Not only is Corina an exceptional photographer, through her daily documentation she also shows us what it’s like to find home in the places she’s visited, the people she meets through her work, and in the experiences that seem to find her.

Photographer: Corina Esquivel
Instagram: @corinaesquivel
Website: corinaesquivel.com


Tell us 5 things you’re obsessed with right now as a photographer

Video (whoops that’s not photography)
I’m always obsessed with the way light moves.

What’s in your camera bag?

Canon Mark III, Canon 50mm 1.4/, Canon 20-70mm 2.8, Spare memory cards/batteries, a leaf of some sort (I use it for borders) and lipstick!  A girl’s got to be ready!

Favourite type of photography to shoot, and why?

I love portraiture, it is what I shoot the most of. I’m a bit shy so it’s not often that I approach people, photography allows me to get to know who I’m photographing and their stories in a very genuine way.

What inspired you to take up photography in the first place?

I’m extremely nostalgic. I’ve always loved being able to remember things; photography seemed like the best way to remember.

We heard you went to photography school. What was your favorite part about it?

How challenging it was! I went to a very technical photo school and it was amazing, but it was something I wasn’t ready for, I’m definitely more creative (or I'd like to think so anyway) and my lessons were very theory heavy. But at the end of the day I’m so thankful I have the theory and the technical side of it. Its help me to combine it with the creative side of me. Another favorite was my time in the darkroom. I developed (Wow! No pun intended) a massive love for film photography, there is something so magical about seeing an image appear on paper.

As a photographer, what was the transition like moving from Canada to the UK? Did you find your style changed at all?

I’m not sure about my style changing much, but the way I see light is very different. UK is very grey, and it’s very busy. I’ve had to learn to seek details. Photography also helped me to make friends, and to see things about the city I probably would’ve missed if I weren’t looking with purpose, you know?


Where do you see yourself as a photographer in the next 5 years?

I want to be able to able to tell stories both visually and with words. If I can combine the two, and have a tangible product, I'd be very happy! I just want people to be known!

When and how did you hear about Shutterstock Custom?

About 4 years ago, through a friend on Instagram.

If you had to choose only one photograph to keep with you for the rest of your life, which one would you choose, and why?

I reckon there’s many, but the first photo that comes to mind is one of me when I was about 4 years old at a school festival in Mexico. I’m wearing a very typical Mexican outfit and heavy makeup, fake braids (I had very short hair) and beside me a boy in a mariachi costume. Is wonderful and every time I see it, my heart smiles. It reminds me of where I’m from and how much I love and miss Mexico. I want my kids to know how beautiful that country is! but also how much fun it can be. I wish I were holding tacos, it would be a complete picture. 

How would you encourage other photographers who are about to start their new career as a photographer?

I think most people would say this: shoot and shoot a lot! Practice practice practice!!  It doesn’t matter what, as long as it’s something that brings you joy. I also think you should always shoot for yourself, and have personal projects. It will help you find inspiration when you’re photographing something that you don’t necessarily love.

Corina, thank you for sharing your creative soul, your love for light pink sunsets, and how to feel inspired no matter where we find ourselves. We look forward to watching your journey unfold in the UK, thanks for inspiring us to source that joy you’ve talked about within the hustle & bustle of our own creative journeys.

We’re constantly on the lookout for new photographers and videographers
to join the Shutterstock Custom Contributor Community!

Apply to start creating stunning visuals for the world's top brands!

Stay creative!
- The Shutterstock Custom Contributor Community Team