by Demetrius Philp on April 3, 2019
"Photography is one percent talent and ninety-nine percent moving furniture".
- Arnold Newman
Reading this statement by Newman gave me a clear sense of how much a prop influences an image, because without these elements the images created will not succeed. Without the ability to actualize an idea or concept, art would not exist for me.
My work is a constant search for the most affective way to interpret the ideas that I want to illustrate. I do not limit myself to one medium, style, or concept. Inspiration and ideas change over time, however, the medium does not. Each photographic image I create is simultaneously an extension from the past, where I have come from, and what I have encountered, as well as a preview of the future from a child's point of view. Many traditional photographic methods and techniques can be seen in my work; mid 20th century, medium format, black & white film but also includes references to, modernism, contemporary photographic portraiture, and late 19th century pictorialism. I hold true to the concept that Photography is my paint and canvas through which I channel my artistry and trials in order to achieve a resolve. I like the idea that form doesn’t necessarily need function, but I also like the idea that function has to work with form, and form has to work with function. If a viewer stops for just a moment to view and reflect on a photograph I have created, then I have succeeded in my work.
The most recent series entitled “The Bedroom” represents memories that I have encountered as a child.
All images above ©2019 Demetrius Philp. All rights reserved.
My name is Demetrius Philp, but I go by a few nicknames, the preferred ones are D or dp, short for portraitsbydp… My fascinating journey began in Kingston, Jamaica. My mother told me that my love for the camera began one night when the light of a shooting star in the night sky caught my attention. My desire to capture what I saw began at that moment. I started creating photos and the disposable camera became my friend in the early ’90s. I was inspired visually by my culture around me, the vivid colors, my countrymen and women and their fashion, and the music from the sound systems in the neighborhood. Everything I saw was something worth saving and remembering. While I was in high school, I met Jo Ann Clukies, a mentor, a teacher, and a strong woman. She saw something in me that I did not see and she inspired me to keep creating photos. She taught me the fundamentals of “Writing with Light” and I became fascinated with the dark-room process, developing my own negatives, and seeing my images come to life. I was proud and excited - that 4 years went by fast and my hard work allowed me to go to college. I went on to graduate from Brooks Institute of Photography. I have spent over ten years assisting and shooting and building my signature style as a photographer and director. Rather than keeping my head down, as a Black, man I have chosen to allow my light to shine. Photography is the only art that allows me to truly express myself. Photography connects me with people, starting with a conversation, leading to an iconic portrait. I’m a portrait, lifestyle, sports, and advertising photographer. The creative process frees me. I find freedom in photography. Creating portraits frees my soul. I love what I do and respect this medium. I always put in 110 percent effort. My work reflects my passion and personality. When not behind the camera I love to be in the midst of life whether hiking, bowling, running, or just hanging out with friends and family.