This week we sat down with Steez, a Houston based photographer who does an amazing job shooting portraits. Originally his manager Rey Laflare reached out to me to show me some of his work, as soon as I was able to go through Steez's page I immediately knew that I wanted to do an interview with him. The reason I was so drawn to Steez's photos was because of how cohesive the photos are. Everything just seems to flow and come together in the smoothest fashion, while also being able to make the subject stand out from the tremendously chosen background. With the internet in our age we have seen a surplus of creatives comes out and I've seen a lot of nice shots but I can tell a lot of the time they just pop on an outfit and stand in front of the camera. No plans nothing. This is not the case with Steez as you can tell every photo is thought out and planned in a very specific way. The eye for detail and the dedication that comes along with it truly separate Steez from other photographers. He's even got his own studio so if you're local to the 713 I would recommend booking him now before he pops off.
Q. How old are you, where did you grow up and where do you stay now?
A. " I’m 21 and been in Houston my entire life."
Q. What was it like growing up in Houston? How has it influenced you today?
A. " Houston was really different, seemed like there were two sides to it and you had to peel the layers but once you did it skyrocketed in a creatives mind. Houston influenced me in a way to grind at a high level and maintain that speed or even raise the bar for yourself every day.
Q. So who were some of your creative influences growing up and how did you get into photography?
A. " I had a lot of influences so from my early life it was definitely Green Day, Kanye West, Justin Bieber, Odd Future and evolved to Kid Cudi, Travis Scott and XXXTentacion for sure. Now as far as photography I always been an artist from a young age, I started with drawing as a little kid then moved into playing instruments throughout elementary and middle school and some high school but at Lamar I was on the sideline for the football games almost every game so I started to film some plays and create music videos that showed the highlights of the game and in the editing process I feel in love with the still shots of the videos and decided to turn that into photography." "My dad put me on to so much music so I took all of it in and used it to fuel my soul in ways that many other people can’t do it’s pretty crazy."
Q. So what are some of your career goals, big or small?
A. "Right now I want to get my clothing line off the ground and just sell 50 tees but hopefully that’ll lead me to designing and using my photography to shoot for a big name like Bloody Osris, Kanye West, Travis Scott, Kid Cudi or even Playboi Carti. Also by 2019 I want to have moved outta Houston to LA after Dimension 7 blows up and we can run shit in multiple cities.
Q. When shooting a certain shot what elements do you try to capture?
A. "I definitely want to make sure the outfit I choose matches the scene to make it pop out even more I try to get the makeup involved as well if possible so I basically want everything to tie in together."
Q. So I see you shoot a lot of portraits, what makes you like shooting portraits over scenery or anything else?
A. "With portraits I can use the person as my canvas and that’s what I love the most about it because you can do a lot more with the canvas in that situation most times you control what they are wearing, where the location is etc etc so every portrait will for sure be different from the last and fashion is an element in my life so to tie them in together just goes hand in hand to me."
Q. What is the hardest part when it comes to creating for you?
A. "EASILY the poses
Poses are always a challenge for me cause there’s so many different ways to make the fits pop but it just doesn’t come natural to me cause I’m not a model (but I’m trying to get into that within the next two years) and neither is most of the people I have modeling for me so I’d usually have to think of poses the night before so yea for sure poses."
Q. What do you think is your favorite piece that you’ve ever shot?
A. "Damn that’s tough I have a couple like “VIEWFINDER” which was shot at a museum but the whole shoot was designed around my very first published magazine “VIEWFINDER” it took a year and some months to make so for sure that’s up there. Then the ones with the talented style icon Foxy Jade where she was wearing the red latex dress and we shot at these color walls in Houston it just looks amazing cause my editing made them look like they were taken at a studio that I didn’t even have until two years later it was a really nice set that I feel was ahead of its time."
Q. How did you end up getting your own studio?
A. "I’m close with the head of BYMYLONELY which is a Houston based clothing brand with very elite pieces you can also say that’s an influence to me in its own right so we naturally sat down and came up with the idea of building one in the complex I felt that it was the next step I needed for evolution in my photography."
I had a good time talking to Steez, personally being more on the music side of creating it was nice to hear about some new angles that I can look at photography in. First we did an inteview with Cam a photographer who is also from Houston and now Steez. H-Town has been a booming spot for creatives and I see these two as front runners in the photography category. Steez is following his dreams just like anyother creative and it's always important to support up and comers, so be sure to cop some merch from Steez! Also if you would like to see some of Steez's work you can find it in the Burbs' Gallery or on Steez's social media that is linked below.
Follow Steez on Social Media