First, tell me a bit about yourself:
Well, my name is Travis Jensen. I’m a 35-year-old photographer living and working in San Francisco. I moved to The City from Milwaukee nearly two decades ago, fresh out of high school with $800 cash, a duffle bag, and a skateboard. That’s it. I’ve been here ever since.
Just recently, I launched my own apparel brand to serve as a platform for my personal photography and interests: FOTOMISH—F/M for short—is an acronym for “Focused on Truthful Outcomes,” with Mish being short for Mission. In other words, I’m on a mission for the truth, roaming the streets with my camera. That sums up my approach to the craft. If you’re already familiar with my work, you know my images aren’t always pretty—far from it actually, but they are natural, truthful, sincere, and real.
1. What neighborhood do you currently call home? Would you ever move or are you happy in your hood?
I stay in the backstreets, a few blocks off Monterey Blvd., just up the way from the Kwik & Convenient Market on Forrester. I’m happy where I’m at right now. The neighborhood is mostly working-class families. We moved here while my wife was pregnant with our first child, about six years ago.
2. What's your hands-down, absolute favorite thing to eat in SF?
Hmm, that’s tough, because I’m not really a foodie—any interest in the latest food trend went out the window once my kids came on the scene. But if I had to pick, I’d say the cioppino at Tadich Grill might be my fave. I also like the papusas and New York-style pizza at Naples Pizzarella on Geneva and Cordova.
3. What's your perfect night on the town?
Well, I don’t drink—stopped nearly two years ago, so I’m not out on the town much after dark. That said, a perfect night for me is knowing my dad and photo duties are handled for the day/night, so I can burn a plump Backwood in the backyard. I like this life.
4. When you need a low-key afternoon, where do you go for down time?
A perfect, low-key afternoon for me is hanging out with my friends in the Excelsior District, with or without the camera and no set agenda. Shout out to the whole Crocker Park/Excelsior Mob! The last of the true.
5. What's your favorite place to go on a day trip from the city?
If I feel like going north, Sonoma. If south, Santa Cruz.
6. Quick-fire round
Burrito or Burger: Burger at Sam’s in North Beach.
Presidio or Golden Gate Park: Presidio, for sure.
BiRite or Mitchell's: Honestly, I don’t really mess with either.
Bike or Muni: If I’m not walking, then I prefer BART (aka the Iron Worm).
Fort Mason or Dolores Park: Fort Point
The Independent or the Fillmore: The Independent, preferably back when it was the Justice League. I had some good times and some rough times in that place.
Baker Beach or Ocean Beach: Ocean Beach, especially when the sky is blanketed with fog.
Three words that describe your life in SF? On My Toes
IG and Twitter: @TravisJensen