As part of my commitment to showcase the best Black talent in the fashion sector, this week, we explore the compelling work of six black image makers pushing boundaries within the medium of fashion photography.
Whether it be the next major campaign or another prestigious editorial, it often feels like the creatives behind the image are forgotten. And while the models may be in the forefront, the photographers are the ones bringing the client’s vision to life. Each with their own distinct style, here, Upscale magazine pays homage to photography’s rising stars. As we dive into a dialogue about their journey and work, we take note of their varied ways of exploring fashion imagery.
First up on the list is Amelia Jackson. Born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, Amelia grew up surrounded by diverse cultures that continue to influence her experimental, surreal images. Although a multi-disciplinary artist, it is Amelia’s photography that sparks curiosities. She uses this medium to capture observations and research in expressing her love for the world. Her photographs have appeared in dozens of publications and campaigns, from cosmetics to jewelry to top fashion brands.
Navigating the portfolio http://www.photographybyameliadesign.com of this black woman in photography is a masterclass in understanding light. Note how no matter what time of day or what weather conditions she is shooting in, she uses the conditions to her advantage to create the best image possible. Behind Amelia’s impressively practice is an open mindset that ‘All things are worth photographing.’
Extraordinary and out-of-the-box, http://creativesoulphoto.com portraits show a clash of cultures, art forms, and expressions of creativity. This power duo has been featured by publications like the New York Times and Own which puts them firmly on the list of Black photographers and tastemakers to know. And when you scroll through Creative Soul’s website, you’ll get a virtually endless supply of sartorial inspiration from their subjects. They’re a source of inspiration for both photographers and fashion enthusiasts.
Brandon Tackett, proprietor of http://axmmedia.com is as adept an interviewer as he is a photographer and art director, creating refreshing imagery with clarity and openness. He uses photography not only as a medium for his practice, but also as a means of visually articulating his personal world of encounters. His authentic style is loved by many fashion houses and magazines. There is nothing ordinary or stationary about Brandon’s photography, and that unwavering, audacious sense of experimentation is what keeps us coming back for more. Brandon Tackett is a top-performing photographer who we anticipate seeing great things from in the years to come.
Scharad M Lightbourne, a Bahamas based fashion photographer, exemplifies his Bahamian heritage in his fashion photography. Scrolling through his website http://www.scharadlphoto.com will give you a sense of joy and good spirits, with his use of bright colors, angular poses, and captivating pattern mixing. His work can be seen in fashion and lifestyle publications, advertising campaigns as well as exhibits, both abroad and locally in the Bahamas.
Sitting at the intersection between documentary and fashion photography, Mad Scientist is one of the hippest names in the industry today. Mad Scientist works offer intimate insights to his subjects and the spaces that surround them, whilst addressing his own experiences as an African American artist. He takes a hands-on approach to creating dramatic images. In both his photographic ventures and his film work, his artistic pieces highlight the subject’s strength and inner turmoil. Now, after photographing objects for so many years, Mad Scientist is enjoying shifting his practice to people. OSCARVILLE Below the Surface, is a documentary project that navigates themes of the area’s factual past, local legends to infuse a fictional storyline.
It’s hard to pin down a single theme for Justin Gravely “Justoshoot” style, as he runs the gamut from high-contrast, exciting flash photography to cool, subdued, and mysterious. With such a range available to him, Justin is easily one of the emerging fashion photographers to watch, and his creative energy passes on to the models in their effortless experimentation with line and form. There’s a youthful energy that is captured throughout the images in his portfolio, and a forward-looking quality that almost makes you feel as though you’re looking at a fashion editorial from a few years into the future. It’s clear that Justin has a creative vision all his own, and he’s created a fashion portfolio that feels entirely contemporary without relying on trendy visual tropes and cliches.