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January 11, 2020
drk__room is a Nottingham based photographer that shoots predominantly on Analogue and specialises in Portraiture, Documentary and Street photography. With a distinctive photography style he hones in on mixing elements of graffiti, collaging and traditional hand printing to create expressive imagery.
I was lucky enough to meet drk__room at a live music event in October at Pepper Rocks Nottingham; the event was hosted by the talented Nottingham based collective 'Different Life Collective'. drk__room has collaborated with DLC on numerous occasions, and they are also an exciting prospect to come out of the city! After spending some time with drk__room I managed to speak with him further about a variety of things.
What was your exposure to photography before university?
My exposure to photography started purely from me needing to fill an extra option at college, I never grew up with a relative’s hand me down camera or anyone in my family specialising in it. It’s just something I picked up by myself and became completely fixated on.
What/Who were your early Influencers?
I would have to drop in artists Chi Modu, Danny Hastings, Bruce Gilden, Edward Burtynsky, Bernd Becher and HillaBecher. As well as painters and artists like Keith Herring, Jean Michel Basquiat and KAWS. This handful of artists really inspired me to be where I am now, working with collaged design, text and portraiture. I'm not and never have been a strong painter, but when I started to use a film camera it felt like the right tool for me, it came so naturally. I became able to express design qualities through collaging and hand printing in my work, enabling me to really work with traditional processes in my own way.
What is your favourite shot, and why?
Recently, I have created a lot of work I'm proud of, but my favourite shoot would have to be one I did with my partner Fiona in collaboration with her brand Trash Stitch. This was the first shoot for me using flash with my RB67 and I was blown away with the results. Both her styling and the raw aesthetic makes the shoot look super clean, comfortable and natural.
Tell me more about your musical background?
Music is another side to me, but I couldn’t have one without the other and I wouldn’t have it any other way. From a young age, I was heavily exposed to alternative music and art in all sorts of forms. I grew up hearing my parents play Hip Hop, R&B and Metal and I was introduced into drums at around 5 years old, and I have not stopped playing since. I have always made sure I make time for music, because with music comes friendship and these friendships have brought opportunities to explore places I wouldn't have otherwise. Over the past 5 years, I have been in 3 bands as well as an arts collective (Different Life Collective) which have taken me on multiple tours around the UK, as well as Europe and Asia. Without music I would probably have no or very little interest in photography, so I have to give it credit, big props.
If you didn't do photography what would you do?
I mean before I started my degree I almost considered becoming a joiner, not that it’s a bad career but I’m glad I pushed myself to find what it is I really want to do in life. If photography wasn’t an option, I would probably have pursued music academically which isn't necessarily the worst scenario, it just means I probably wouldn't enjoy it in the way I do now.I think no matter what I do, I’ll always be doing something creative, but it definitely won’t be no 9-5.
What would be your dream shoot, including location, styling and model.
For me, it isn’t about the who what and where, it’s about the relationship you can have with who or what you’re shooting. Every shoot for me is a chance to really get to know someone and I feel that this is really shown in the images I create. Because I handprint I feel that I make more than just photographs - I make art, it’s a discipline like anything else. Of course, I would love to photograph some "big boy" in L.A like BROCKHAMPTON or Tyler, The Creator but who wouldn’t? If anything, take me back to 1990’s Brooklyn and give me NAS, WU Tang or ODB, styled with Phat Farm or Fubu, ha.
Website: https://drkroom.format.com / Contact: email@example.com
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