After coming to the United States from El Salvador at the age of nine, Samuel Hernandez received his first camera as a gift at age fifteen. He took his first class in photography the same year, continuing through high school and at Pasadena City College, where he received a degree in fine art photography. While there, he served as photo editor of the weekly newspaper, Spotlight, an annual magazine, and Portfolio, a photojournalism magazine.
He has since freelanced at local papers across Southern California, as well as serving as the in-house photographer for a prestigious sound company, where his commercial work was seen in such magazines as MIX, Home-Theater, Digital TV & Sound, and Home Entertainment. In the last few years he has been working on a personal project featuring burlesque performers from all over the world, and from 2007 to 2010 was the official photographer for and co-founder of L.A. Burlesque, a promotional group. He continues to work on his extended project featuring documentary portraits of uncelebrated Angelenos.
He has also won multiple awards, including a first place for both News Photojournalism and Sports Photography from the statewide College Journalism Association. He has displayed his work throughout Los Angeles at Ave 50, Rock Rose Gallery, Michael Odell Gallery, and in the “Los Angeles City Limits” exhibit at 29 Palms Gallery, as well as Exposure Gallery’s “Views from the L.A. River” in Palm Springs and the internationally shown Foto Septiembre USA. His work was the subject of the 2009 exhibit “Wearing our Stories: Costume and Cultural Identity in the Latino Community” at the Museum of Ventura County.