Followers of Offset’s Instagram feed were taken on a personal journey last week, as photographer Joe Schmelzer (@treasurbite) shared snapshots of his daily life, his loves (including boyfriend Nick and canine friend Moose), and his current creative projects based out of his studio in Los Angeles.
Joe says that he might have taken a completely different career path had it not been for Mohammad Ali — specifically a black-and-white portrait of the history-making heavyweight signed by photographer Yousuf Karsh. It was hung in his childhood room above his bed by his father, who said he purchased it because it was a “solid investment.” Always standing out as mismatched against the other decor, it constantly caught Joe’s attention.
Eventually, this iconic image would inspire Schmelzer’s own path to photography. “Something just clicked,” he says. Nearly two decades later, Joe is an editorial and commercial photographer specializing in hotel, food, environmental, and celebrity portraits.
Since then, his work been featured by major interior-centric magazines, websites, and blogs, and is regularly included in the editorial pages of Architectural Digest, Elle Decor, Vogue UK, Sunset, and Travel + Leisure.
Holding a BFA from the Rochester Institute of Technology and and MFA from the California Institute of the Arts, Joe strives to maintain the artistic perspectives and characteristics of traditional photography, as well as to incorporate innovative technology. This is reflected throughout all of his projects, professional and personal, along with his desire to capture the extraordinary in seemingly mundane moments.
Originally from suburban Cleveland, Joe now resides in LA’s Silver Lake neighborhood. Never far from a vintage boutique or fair trade/organic coffee outlet, he oversees all aspects of his photography projects through his independently owned company, Treasurbite Studio, Inc.
When not doing something photography-related, Joe can be found listening to indie Britpop band James or CrossFitting himself into a human machine. Scroll on for a selection of images from his Offset portfolio.