When did you first pick up a camera?
I first picked up a camera about 4 years ago when I decided to take a photography class at Columbia
Why did you decide to start getting involved with the sneaker/streetwear industry?
Since graduating high school, I realized I wanted a career in the footwear/fashion industry. Sneakers started it all for me and definitely fueled my initial passion.
You’ve been working with Modern Notoriety over the past couple of years, what’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned from working with Oscar?
The biggest lesson I’ve learned working at Modern the past few years is trusting the process. Oscar and I say it to each other all the time, whenever we feel we are in a rut or aren’t getting hit up for projects, we tell each other to trust the process and things always end up working out.
How has it been working with Adidas?
Working with Adidas is honestly a dream come true. I got denied from so many job apps by them in the past I couldn’t keep track, so being able to see my photos on their site or social channels is always surreal. It’s a relationship I really cherish and only want to do bigger and better things with them.
You’re starting a new journey now, as you’ve left Chicago and transitioning to life in New York City as Reign’s Content Director. How did this all happen and how has it been so far?
This is all happened from a simple DM on Instagram a couple years ago actually. That’s what’s so great about IG, you can make so many worthwhile friendships that can potentially lead to opportunities. PONY Footwear was in the midst of a relaunch and I happened to DM the guy that was behind the rebirth, Santino LoConte. After I got denied from a Finish Line internship that summer, I figured I’d take a long shot and ask him if they were looking for any interns. Next thing I knew I was on a plane to lock down a place to live and was out there for 3 months. Fast forward 2 and half years later and Santino opened REIGN. He hit me up about 6 months ago seeing if I’d be interested in the position and we’ve been coordinating the details since then. So far it’s been a whirlwind, definitely, the most work I’ve ever put into something and I’m really proud of it. I know I have a ton to learn and this experience is going to help with that.
Over the years of working with top brands, discuss the importance of networking with others.
Networking is crucial but definitely has to be done with good taste. I think there are some people who hit others up and might go about it the wrong way but usually, it just takes time to feel certain relationships out. I never set out to “network” with others, but look at it as connecting with people within the same industry or people I’ve looked up to and ideally can become friends with because we share common interests. The beauty about the footwear industry is the majority of people who are in it for the long-run have a genuine passion for it and that’s really hard to find. An instant connection like that goes a long way and you’d be surprised how many good people there are out there. Everybody looks out for each other.
Can you make it in the industry alone? Or is it important to work with others?
When it comes to photography, you can make it out there alone for the beginning. Eventually, you’ll naturally meet a mentor or someone who can help you along the way but at the end of the day, it’s up to yourself to catapult yourself forward. If you have the passion and drive, you’ll eventually end up where you want to be.