Spotlight: Banker captures beauty of the AV

James Stamsek, a banker and self-taught photographer, is the first in our AV Spotlight series highlighting talented individuals in the Antelope Valley.

James Stamsek, a banker and self-taught photographer, is the first in our AV Spotlight series, which highlights talented individuals in the Antelope Valley.

LANCASTER – Local banker, James Stamsek, spends most of his free time scouring the Antelope Valley for that perfect shot.

The Joshua tree photo that got things started. (James Stamsek)

The Joshua tree photo that got things started. (James Stamsek)

The self-taught photographer says he enjoys capturing the natural beauty of the desert, and he was pleasantly surprised when he discovered that others did, as well.

For Stamsek, this discovery began when he shared his first Joshua tree photo on this Facebook page in July 2012.

The positive accolades from friends and family members fueled his passion to post more and more photos of the Antelope Valley’s natural beauty.

“There is a treasure trove of natural beauty that we’re blessed to see on a daily basis,” explains Stamsek. “All one has to do is simply look.”

Stamsek's most popular photo to date.

Stamsek’s most popular photo to date.

The cities of Lancaster and Palmdale soon took notice.

Stamsek’s work has been featured in the Palmdale Magazine and twice in the Valley Life magazine, which is published by the Antelope Valley Press.

His most popular photograph to date is the “BLVD Christmas 2012,” which generated more than 200 shares and over 500 ‘likes’ on Facebook.

You’ve also seen his work right here at The Antelope Valley Times.

What began in 2010 as a fun-loving hobby has evolved into James Stamsek Photography. View highlights from James Stamsek Photography below, or visit his facebook page for many more gorgeous photos of the Antelope Valley.

More on James Stamsek

Stamsek describes how he developed his eye for photography.

“My residency in the high desert began in 1984. My parents moved from Arcadia, CA, to take advantage of the low cost housing here in the Antelope Valley.

Since I can remember, I always had an affinity for technology, originating from the Atari 2600. This stands true today with the technological advancement of cameras.

With my broad appreciation for electronics, I was led to the Internet in the early 90s. There, I was presented with technology in the form of a 133Mhz PC. With the wealth of information on the web, the only true limited aspect was myself. My thirst for knowledge would eventually push  technology to the capabilities I sought. I grew rapidly in computer software and hardware and spent over a decade as a personal PC technician. Little did I know, my technological ability would serve me well in photography.

In 2010, I invested in a robust, feature-rich, point and shoot camera. It wasn’t quite a DSLR, as I was not that confident for such additional costs that soon. A year later, I voluntarily plunged into debt as I charged my first DSLR camera through Dell. I was confident that photography was a channel to appease my growing artistic hunger. Shortly after, my Canon T2i was delivered to my doorstep, along with kit, zoom, and prime lenses. I instantly fell in love with the quality obtained at the press of a button, and like with computers, I was faced with a technology in which the only obstacle was my creativity, knowledge, and personal investment.

By the end of 2012, and a few camera upgrades later, I began to take my photography more seriously. After working over ten years repairing, upgrading, and building computers for numerous clients, I ended up passing them to a reliable friend of mine, freeing up several hours a week to pursue my new found passion. This extra time enabled me to fully immerse myself into the photography world. Even now, with each individual photo that I snap, whether for pleasure or client, I gain personal satisfaction. Though I have to admit, my most dear photos are those taken in my own backyard…the Antelope Valley. The desert, with it’s Joshua trees and striking sunrise/sunsets, is truly to die for. I feel that when I capture these magnificent canvases in which mother-nature has to offer, those around me will appreciate them as well.”
James Stamsek is the first in our “AV Spotlight series”, where we highlight local, ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

Do you know someone who deserves the AV Spotlight? This person can be local artist, dancer, singer, or someone who is simply doing positive things for the Antelope Valley community. If you or someone you know deserves the AV Spotlight, please send a brief biography (four paragraphs or less), along with a sample of work (i.e. photos, YouTube link, etc.), and contact information to

From James Stamsek captures the Antelope Valley, posted by The Antelope Valley Times on 2/03/2013 (17 items)

Generated by Facebook Photo Fetcher 2

  13 comments for “Spotlight: Banker captures beauty of the AV

  1. Gladys
    February 4, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    Beautiful photos. Are they available to purchase? The Lancaster Blvd shot with the Christmas tree would make great Christmas cards. If they are available, where can I purchase them?

  2. James Stamsek
    February 4, 2013 at 4:47 pm

    I really appreciate the positive feedback! =) Be sure to “like” my Facebook page to keep up with my work!

    • Forewarned
      February 5, 2013 at 7:31 am

      I did! Love your work! You have a special talent. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  3. Lancaster_ruben
    February 4, 2013 at 3:28 pm

    Very nicely detailed shots, you have capture the true essence of the AV

  4. Lancaster_ruben
    February 4, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    Nice images!!! you really capture the true essence of the antelope valley!

  5. Forewarned
    February 4, 2013 at 7:30 am

    Beautiful pictures! You defiantly have an eye for photography.

  6. QHR
    February 4, 2013 at 6:37 am

    Nice work! It’s always good to see people do positive things in the AV.

    Where was the photo with the waterfall taken?

    • James Stamsek
      February 4, 2013 at 11:29 am

      That photo was taken off of Bouquet Canyon. The particular spot is known as “The Falls”.

      • QHR
        February 4, 2013 at 9:26 pm

        Awesome! Thank you!

  7. chris
    February 3, 2013 at 9:12 pm

    These photos are great, I too find the AV extraordinarily beautiful!

  8. Joanna
    February 3, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    Very nice. I am very proud of him. Thanks for sharing James Stamsek and his photography. How beautiful he makes the A.V.

  9. Palmdale_Steve
    February 3, 2013 at 3:30 pm

    Really nice work, thanks for sharing it with the readership here.

Comments are closed.