A concept born out of a desire to work with artists and photographers that Team AYS know and hold in esteem due to what they are able to bring across in their work, the AYS ‘Brainchild’ Project is distinctly different than anything you’ve seen from them before. Each photographer is set to contribute photographs for the project, using pieces from Art Youth Society, and incorporating them into their own unique work of art. This project places the emphases on artistic interpretation.
After showing you a preview of the work of GreyEtc., New York based creative brainchild of British born photographer Nadia Sarwar and Australian born photographer Drex Drechsel and the work of photographers Kimi Hammerstroem and Sharon Jane D. we would love to introduce you to our next artist Steven Taylor.
Los angeles-based photographer Steven Taylor has established quite a substantial resume for himself working with a range of music personas and celebrities alike. Having worked alongside the likes of Common, Snoop Dogg, Incubus, Jordin Sparks, Metronomy, Serena Williams, Pharrell, Bruno Mars and many more, Steven has developed a refined ability to capture his subjects in an impressive, yet candid setting, effectively portraying a personal side of each individual. His experience has allowed him the capacity to remain professional in a working environment while maintaining a natural atmosphere.
Working with both film and digital, Steven‘s ever expanding resume reflects both a simplistic and sophisticated side of an artist whose identity is seamlessly paralleled in his work.
So, first: Where are you from, where are you now and where will you be in 10 years?
I am from Tampa, Florida. I live in Los Angeles, California. In 10 years, if science allows, maybe I’ll be in both?
How did you join the society (of photography artists) and why?
I mostly shoot portraits because I am inspired by strong people and I like to share with others what I see in a person.
Youth is an attitude to life. Which aspects are essential for you?
1. Being Present
2. Being Spontaneous
3. Being Loyal
Favourite jewelery piece.
My wedding ring.
You have a musical background and history. How does this refelct in your pictures beside the fact that you shoot a lot of musicians?
I don’t know that it does reflect much other than me shooting a lot of musicians actually. I think I am particularly good at shooting musicians because I can relate though. They’re not models but they’re expected to look a certain way. I hate being photographed but sometimes it’s necessary. I feel like I get it and can break through a little easier than a photographer that’s used to just shooting beautiful people.
What kind of music do you hear? Currently on repeat?
Erik Hassle, Sam Smith, The Balancers, Devan DuBois, Mase.
Your artist-portraits have a very intimate character? Capturing moments of joy, vulnerability, or introspection. How did you develop such a sure instinct to »read« personalities?
First off, Thank you! That’s a huge compliment because that’s my goal as a photographer. I can’t say that I have a good answer though unfortunately. Just practice and experience and listening.
You once said: »Nobody makes it on their own, so the people around you matter.« Which people around you matter? Who inspires you?
Everyone does. I meant that quite literally. Positive people will be uplifting, driven people will push you, loving people will make you feel worthy, giving people will make you feel appreciated. I try to be that for others and try to keep others like that around. I want to stay driven and uplifted, loved, and appreciated.
Interview by Sarah Krause