How would you describe your work?
I would describe my work as men’s fashion editorial, one that aims to break the set normality, of how men are represented in media. Men in popular/traditional media are usually represented as masculine, non-flamboyant, and are dressed to match the part. Growing up; guys who were lankier, flamboyant, androgynous, un-athletic, or fashionable, were always made to feel different. You were the ABNORMAL, THE SISSY, THE WEIRD ONE, AN OUTSIDER, someone who just didn’t fit in...someone who didn’t have anyone else to look at in the media to make them just feel normal. Ultimately through my work I hope to represent and tell the stories for the guys just like me, who, because they didn’t have role models in the media, felt excluded. Being a part of the LGBTQ community has greatly inspired my work, I do not wish to only represent that community, I make work for every man that’s ever felt ashamed, ostracised, or embarrassed just for expressing themselves, just for BEING themselves.
So tell us a bit about yourself?
I am a 21 year old Black, gay guy who grew up in Miami, Florida. I moved to Atlanta, Georgia, when I was 13 for middle school. I feel like both are really a part of me. I currently live in Savannah.
Where do your influences come from?
FUCKING YOUNG! (men’s fashion magazine), HELLO MR. (men’s fashion magazine), PETRA COLLINS (photographer), HAYAO MIYAZAKI (Japanese film director)
What is your personal philosophy in regards to art?
The best art comes from the soul/ the personal experience of the maker. If it doesn’t have something that comes from you or anything at that’s made you who you are- it has no soul itself. It’s not genuine, it’s only a product...it’s a design, not art.
What materials and disciplines do you work in?
I shoot with 35mm film primarily, but my most recent work has all been digital. I love to work with film, and I have such a deep appreciation for how much work goes into the process. To take an image from behind your viewfinder, to a negative, getting that developed, scanning that negative, then producing that image digitally/printing it. It makes the whole image so much more earned, you cherish the work.
How do you integrate this in regards to your work?
In everything that I make I try to imprint an essence of myself, my experience as an artist, and as a human.
What projects are you working on/looking forward to doing in the future?
Currently I am building a men’s fashion portfolio to showcase my ideologies mentioned before, and I look forward to working on that throughout the rest of year as a senior project, and until graduation as my thesis. I hope to collaborate with many different artist/designers that share my passion for this issue, and hopefully work for a publication post-college that also shares my ideologies for the future of men's fashion and representation in media.