We had the good fortune of connecting with Marcus Miller and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Marcus, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I didn’t take to sports growing up and didn’t show interest in most subjects in school; art was the field of study that I naturally gravitated in. After spending an early part of my life in The Bronx, NY, I was introduced to many art forms. The city itself was a covered canvas that visually enticed me. Graffiti-covered buildings, billboards, and the occasional train car were the forms of art I would see daily.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Other people tell me more about my work than I could. It invokes an emotional response; those are the words that have been shared with me. When I am shooting, my goal is to capture what I see for those who couldn’t be there; capturing the mood of the spaces consciously and subconsciously. Also, I like telling stories of my culture, people and highlighting the positive where the masses only see a negative.
Being a graphic designer has lent a hand in helping frame my shots, but learning the technical aspects of operating a camera to help me achieve the shot I’m looking for has been my challenge. I’m learning as I go and having fun with the process.
One of the biggest lessons that I’ve learned; have a backup battery and memory card. There are moments when I have forgotten both during an event and I was upset with myself. I didn’t want the fun to stop.
If I had to leave a takeaway for the world to know about me, it would be to find a hobby and see where it takes you. Be curious about how far you can stretch your dreams.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take them to Camp North End, an up-and-coming development that is pretty hip. The grounds feature BLKMRKT’s creative studio, other independent businesses, mural-covered warehouses, new eateries, and a handful of bars. One of the warehouses is running the interactive Van Gogh experience.
Next, I would take them down to Plaza-Midwood for some real low-key vibes. The neighborhood features a brewery, a bunch of landmark bars, and quite a few eateries. The energy is unmatched during the summer.
Should any good music acts come to the city, The Fillmore or The Underground are good places to catch notable concerts. If independent artists come into the city, The Neighborhood Theatre or Snug Harbor provides an intimate live music experience.
Last, I would probably take them to South End. The area is covered with lots of great foods and bars. A good place to bar hop during the summer. Pins Mechanical has a nice rooftop bar with a killer view of the skyline.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My peer group pushes me to be the best creative I can be. Each plays a pivotal role. First, I would like to thank my friends/family over 8910 and Forever FC, a former music group, but they allowed me to run point as a designer and creative director for their earlier music endeavors. I gained confidence within myself as an artist when I realized that people connected with the artwork.
Secondly, I would like to thank my friends over at BLKMRKT CLT; a black-owned creative studio operated by Dammit Wesley, a multimedia artist/painter, and his business partner Will aka Simplisticphobia, a director and photographer. They both push me to create and share my art at a higher level. King Carla and Carey J. King are other creatives apart of the studio that gives me the proper tools to keep creating by sharing documentaries, various photography books, and overall general conversation.
Last, I would like to say my family pushes me to keep creating. They have seen my potential and champion me at every level of my career.
All images were shot by myself. Image 1. Subject is Detroit rapper, Boldy James Image 2. Subject is North Carolina rapper, Deniro Farrar Image 3. Subject is North Carolina rapper, Lute Image 4. Subjects are Atlanta rappers, Earthgang Image 5. Subjects are Dreamville rappers, Bas and J. Cole Image 6. Subjects are BLKMRKT for Social Status x Adidas, Dammit Wesley & Will (Simplisticphobia) Image 7. Subjects BLKMRKT collective for Social Status Image 8. Subjects are BLKMRKT collective for Social Status