'“Artists can” pretty much covers it for me.'
Stephen Levey of LeveyAngeles, is a professional photographer. He documents aspects of Los Angeles in a way which speaks of his love for his city. His images are unashamedly truthful, often achieved in hours when streets are empty. Many of his photos are black and white- these are striking in their capture of shapes, patterns and textures, and at the same time somehow convey an emotive quality. The works are engaging, moody, and embody a timelessness.
Stephen is also known for Projection Project LA, for which he uses his own work and also extends invitations to other artists to realise the artwork on a large mural scale.
Where is your current studio? What would be your dream studio? My city IS my studio, My city devoid of its inhabitants (when I’m shooting at least 😉). Do you prefer to work in silence or does certain music inspire you? I do *normally (* = pre covid) listen to music when I’m out shooting.
Studio life can lead to isolation, how do you address this/ keep a balance? I’m a huge fan of isolationism when working so this is a non issue for me. Describe a moment you had an epiphany concerning your creative life. The day I realized that old adage “If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life” was actually true.
What is your favourite/ least favourite part of the creative process? I love being out, finding new locations or having to track down a specific location, than figuring out how I’m going to get the image I want... and I hate when I can’t. Do you have a personal mantra or quote which serves to motivate you?
Don’t fall, don’t get caught, don’t die 😉🤣
How has your style evolved and what contributed to the changes?
I look back at images I thought were really good when I took them now wanting to punch that younger me in the teeth for not moving an inch to the right or waiting an hour for the light... the more you do something the more you learn... (I’m always going to be learning). Describe an obstacle you have faced and how did you overcome it.
An obstacle is a problem I just haven’t found an resolution for yet... the majority of the time I’m faced with an obstacle my first thought is what will a week from now look like if I... then I work backwards, this removes many obstacles with little work. There have been, are & will be many more and I’ll get past, over or through them as well.
Is there something you regard as essential to your preparation or process?
Relationships and research!!! When I started out I would just show up somewhere having done no research and having no information or contacts then try to figure out how to gain entry (as everyone who knows me knows, most of the time I was able to talk my way in 🤣) or where to go. I quickly learned that in some instances this was not the smartest way to accomplish my goal.
Detail a moment which was the highlight for you, thus far. Hopefully without this making me sound like a douchebag, It’s all been a highlight. I would have never thought that taking a picture 4 years ago would lead to the awesome ridiculousness my life has become since. If you could time travel, what advice would you give the younger you, regarding pursuing your artmaking?
Buy Apple, sorry art stuff... SHOOT EVERYTHING!
How does your work respond to social trends?
FUCK SOCIAL TRENDS.
What do you hope to convey through your work?
I hope is that what I saw, someone else will appreciate being able to see later... as for a specific message, I don’t have one.
Want to follow Stephen?
I don’t really care about this part, if someone wants to find me they will.... I’M FUCK’N EVERYWHERE! 🤣🤣🤣