Christean Kareem

How did you get into photography?

I’ve always been inspired by all forms of art. I think what really sparked it was when I went to visit a friend in Lake Superior. Note, I look at things cinematically. That trip was like a movie. Everything she showed me, from; the trees, the old people in diners waiting for food, the grey overcast and depressing days. It was so raw to me! It didn’t hit me until we left the lake that I wanted to shoot. I mean, I always took photos but when we went to the creek, I was inspired. I realized that my iPhone wasn’t gonna’ cut it.

Tell me about your favorite photographic adventure.

A friend and I were shooting this musician, she was a big deal. I had no idea, but she was really nice, and we got donuts and talked about music the entire time. She also played some exclusive tracks and gave us some chocolate. It was a happy day.

How do you stay motivated in a career where it’s easy to just give up?

I have friends around me that push me, it becomes semi-competitive. Added to that, breathing and being obsessed with art plays a major deal.

How important or instrumental a camera is to your look or a certain look?

Uhm, I believe every camera has a different feel. We all use them differently because of perspective. You don’t need a new camera, you can use what you have but you should also understand that it’s more than the camera. It’s lighting, it’s models, locations, wardrobe. Everything you need to enhance that feeling. It’s also your vision too, a new camera can help IF you know what you want.

Outside of photography, what else are you into?

I love music, art, and playing video games whenever I get the chance. And donuts.

Tell me about the process you follow in finding your muses.

I really look for natural looking people. Not a ton of make-up, simple yet beautiful.

Are you currently working on any photographic projects? Do you have any past 

projects? Which of your projects have been your favourite?

I am working on some new stuff that I’m really excited about, with a new camera. It’s not completely a new direction, but it’s inching towards a more intimate work.

I really love the first shoot I did. It was long, but good. It was exciting because it was my first time. Afterwards, via shares and interviews, my work got selected to be ranked alongside one of the photographers I looked up to.

What gear have you relied on during your progression as a photographer? 

My phone. I like having a second perspective.

Do you have any dream collaborations?

At the moment, I don’t have any dream collaborations. Maybe getting someone big and having them be my muse like Sufjan Stevens or Tyler the Creator.

Where do you draw your inspiration from? What do you think your biggest influence on your photography is?

I honestly love music. I used to dream up music videos for Justin Timberlake songs. Movies, especially flicks that evoke a strong sense of sadness and ones with interesting color palettes.

My biggest influence would have to be jazz music and melancholy flicks. I feel they work well, they’re very instrumental to life. It causes you to feel more deeply, like an Adele song.

Which local and international photographers inspire you?

Marat Neva, Cary Fagan, Leanna Surfleet, Synchrodogs, and Christopher Hainey.

Where can we find more of your work?

christeankareem.com

@christeankareem

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