CONVERSE

Converse FW’21 seasonal styes, art directed by Jake Kelley, produced by BK Projects, styled by Zara Mirkin. Thank you again to my guy Jake for making sure I was there for this. I love NY.

CHARLOTTE

Spent a day with Charlotte taking some press photos before her ALPHA rollout, felt like we hadn’t seen each other in a lifetime and of course we picked up right where we left off.

HOW DOES IT LOOK?

An accidental flick of my girlfriend as she took her phone back led to this editorial, ‘How Does It Look?’ is a highlight of that moment before review, spread across numerous outfits, styled by Chiara and I, modelled by Baby Kojo for NOMAD.

SUPERETTE SOUNDS

I made this mix for Superette back in Sept of 2020, while I was taking a leave of absence from my stream, a compilation of songs to start your day with, put on in the background while you work, take with you on a walk or go for a drive. Enjoy.

NOCTA SP21 BTS

BTS from NOCTA for NOMAD. This was such a great day, it was one of my first time seeing friends as the pandemic roared on, I won’t forget how great it felt to be in the company of others again. Thank you to Vince, Chiara, Nam, Kojo, Julian, Michael, Gideon, Mikael, Dave, Kahma and everyone at Nike.

HOUSE OF VANS : GROUP SHOW

Really honoured to have been invited to participate in the House of Vans Group Show (March 2021) a virtual exhibition showcasing 12 Canadian artists in support of the Dillon Ojo Lifeline Foundation and Nations Skate Youth. This was a really great exhibit put on by Vans at the height of the pandemic that brought on artists from a variety of mediums to support two amazing initiatives. Thank you again to Dan Climan (curator of the show) for inviting me and of course Vans.

NOMAD : WEB REDESIGN

Back in March 2021 I redesigned NOMAD‘s website, the previous iteration was solid but after 7 years it had lost functionality and didn’t feel like who we were (I’m the Creative Director / Head of Photography at NOMAD).
With this website I wanted to strip down anything unnecessary and allow it to rest on imagery and also be easily shoppable. Large image columns, hovering menu that’s easily accessible and of course a playlist that we update weekly- coding done by the amazing Mays. Of course the first album we had on there was by one of my favorite artists (and friends) TWEAKS.

Q&A

I did a Q&A on Instagram about maybe a year ago now actually (Feb 2021), I figured having those questions on my website would be easier for people to reference/save. Hope these help you in some way, feel free to DM me or email me at info@othellogrey.com at anytime if you want to ask any questions directly and I’ll try to get back to you.

LOUIS VUITTON X NBA

I’m very blessed to have shot the LV X NBA Collection campaign imagery, I’ll just keep it short and say thank you Virgil for the opportunity, Shai for being A1, Carina for sticking by me through the entire process and to everyone else who helped make this happen. Maybe I should post some BTS pics and elaborate more but I’ll update the post another day, I’m still letting this sink in.

Oh, you can see more photos here.

EBHONI – ‘MIA’

Bobby reached out to me and said he’s been working with Ebhoni and he thinks I’d be a great fit to direct her music video, I’ve been a bit apprehensive about beginning video work on account of idealizing how all my projects would be in my mind and not wanting them to stray away from it at all. And also being a musician I kept making up this narrative about my first I direct should be my own (lol whut?). I decided to put that aside and remind myself that there really isn’t any sort of grandeur way to go about it, whatever I do will be of me and the constructive critiques and growth can come once I actually walk through the door and enter the room.
Long story short, I had the pleasure of directing ‘MIA’ for Ebhoni. She’s magnetic, genuine, funny and such an amazing energy to be around. That’s what we wanted to capture in this video, a very personal take mixed in with her natural star presence. I had my super producer Carina with me, an amazing DP Alim, Mila on MUA, Nick on edit, Ana on colouring and a team of amazing individuals working hard to make the this come to life. Thank you again to everyone involved.

(Try to catch my mini cameo lol)

NADINE MOS

I don’t remember exactly when I met Nadine (as my memory operates on it’s own accord and I can’t access the parts of my life I desire) but over the years we’ve formed a very special friendship. We would speak briefly when she was in Toronto but while she was in London she began releasing her garments, an array of wonderful dresses, tops, hats and more and I was just taken away. We decided we have to shoot when she comes back from London- last summer I took some portraits of her but we couldn’t get the timing right for me to shoot her garments. This past August we finally made it happen. The moon set the scene as the sky cast a whimsical ballad of blues and purples- Yolonda moved across the sand as though they were one. See the rest of her collection here and you can see the full set of photos is here.

i-D Up+Rising, 40th Anniversary Cover

Mere words can’t describe the emotions I felt seeing this for the first time .. I shot a cover of an issue of i-D Magazine. I don’t usually attach my emotions to outcomes but this was different, this is something that me at the beginning of my photography career would fantasize about but never knew if it would or could happen. To share such an accolade with someone as special as Ravyn was the proverbial icing on the cake. Endless thank you’s and gratitude to Alastair and Hazel for trusting me with this and to Ravyn for her time, energy and compassion.

The endless flaws of a society built on the ideals of white supremacy have shaped generations of people- we’re told we have enough, we’re told to go back from where we came, we’re told to obey orders, we’re told to shut up and entertain, we’re told our desire for equity has no place in the world. We’re mocked, mimicked, cosplayed, we’re judged, persecuted, mistreated, murdered. Everyday is suffering, everyday I can hold an object in my hand and witness people that look like me be murdered, everyday I walk into a setting and am believed to be an aggressor, everyday I cry for Black people murdered by those ‘sworn to protect us’, everyday I wish for a new world.

Read Ravyn’s much more articulate dissection of this same system that stifles us and what she envisions for our future here.

GLEEM

I’ve been making music as Thanks for the Tears for around 7 years now, like photography I taught myself everything I know. I’ve always been extremely sensitive when it comes to my music, it’s been too much of an emotional diary to let anyone else in. My early experiments were met with refusal from friends which served as a deterrent and only bolstered my fears. ⁣⁣


⁣One of my best friends Freddy had been working on a graphic novel titled GLEEM and wanted to approach the world as though it was a film – give it a score, do trailers and the like (I shared the trailers a few posts back). I was surprised when he asked me to do the score, as I’d only played him some random fragments of music I’d made at the time. I never imagined it would be the first musical project I ever release. I’ll always be grateful to him for trusting me and allowing me to share something so precious with him. ⁣⁣

With that said I’m excited to share this project with the world and hope it resonates with someone somewhere lol. It’s available now everywhere (Spotify, Apple Music) alongside the release of the 2nd Edition of GLEEM, you can get the physical/digital copy of GLEEM on Peow Studio’s webshop and get the soundtrack + digital booklet companion on Bandcamp.

Technical Difficulties

I’ve resolved any previous issues, if you’re still having trouble viewing the editorial section clear your cache or hard reload you browser (command + R on mac) to view accordingly. Thank you!

I’m having a few technical difficulties with my editorial page that contains the brunt of my work, please bare with me as I sort them out.

For now visit my instagram for comprehensive works.

LAT Magazine

My initial interactions with Vanessa of bLok were special for me to say the very least. I don’t recall a time where my first dialogue leading to a potential working relationship felt as natural and well rounded. Our 20 min video call was a profound sharing of ideologies, I’ve never had my work/philosophy/approach analyzed and told to me in a way so precise by someone I’ve never met.

That initial ideation call led to me coming on to shoot photo’s for an article in LAT magazine (which bLok was designing) about the flaws in the legalization of the weed industry. Vanessa trusted me 100% with creative direction and gave me the room to translate the article visually with only a few pre determined references. A week or so later I brought my friend Justin to the studio for maybe an hour (with a some help from Chiara) and shot portraiture in a style I was honing in on back in 2017. I was grateful to learn that one of the photos was selected as one of the three covers for the issue.

LAT Magazine – THE PITFALLS OF CANADIAN POT PARDONS

“After the legalisation of weed everyone was led to believe their cannabis charges would be removed and they could resume their lives without the burden of a criminal record. Turns out that’s only for the privileged few” – Michelle Bilodeau + Dannielle Piper

This is the photo that became one of the three covers for LAT. I was going to go on tangent about my feelings towards all the flaws surrounding the legalization of weed and its affects on marginalized communities but this article says it all much better than I can. A very insightful and poignant piece – read the full article here.

Exhibition : OCELOT

‘OCELOT’ : a digital exhibition dissecting my career throughout the years, is showing until May 25th at Mirror Mirror Gallery, an initiative by Banded Purple & Studio Brutus.
I’ve felt an overwhelming distance from photography/creative endeavours during this pandemic, (read ‘Creation in Isolation’ below for more on that) so I had inhibitions about doing any form of digital exhibition. After considering it more, I decided that an exhibit that allowed me to highlight what I’ve tried to achieve through my work could be a good reference point for other photographers who are in the current stage of navigating where they fit. I’ve managed to dabble in various stylistic approaches while still maintaining visual synchronicity and a clear intention/pursuit with my work (regardless of how I take the photo it always feels like me). So if this exhibit could help anyone get closer to that understanding of self, I am totally satisfied. The exhibit consists of three sections that I’ve broken down below, view the full exhibit here. Thank you again to everyone who made this possible.

LYCRA

My initial response to breaking free from the ideals I’d been conditioned to adhere to. ‘Lycra’ represents fluidity—breaking from the stillness of existing within predetermined thought process. My observations beginning to take new form through understanding of my sight and learning to translate ephemeral moments.

GUILE

Guile represents the use of new knowledge to my advantage, photography beginning to act as my total outlet, understanding what I wanted to convey, gaining control and that control leading to synchronicity between mind and creative pursuit

VALOUR

Valour indicates the courage to fully succumb to my inhibitions without them becoming a crutch. A state of trust, trusting my capabilities, my intent, my dialogue and entering each project with a pure heart that no longer creates from a place of fear.

The AGO : Artists Talk

This was the biggest milestone of my career- (if I can speak candidly) I’ve found that (in this city) I’m an enigma so to speak- I’m grateful to have carved a path for myself through determination, discipline, relentless work ethic and without handouts but there are times when my resolve waivers and it feels like an endless cycle of being misunderstood.

To be recognized and given this platform, at an institution of this nature was such a blessing and I am forever grateful to Annie for the opportunity. Thank you to Anupa for being the best person I could have had his dialogue with.

For a few hundred people to give their time to share space/exchange energy with me was something I’ll never forget. Seeing my mother, step father and sister sitting front row warmed my heart in ways I can’t explain (they’ve never been to any exhibitions or lectures I’ve done). Having most of my friends check off the time and date to make sure they were there for me to show support (and the countless messages from friends who couldn’t be there) was a gift I didn’t know I needed. Before ‘breaking through’ in photography/really knowing anything about the art world, I was a courier and would deliver paper to the AGO in awe- I never thought I would be on a stage in the building doing an artists talk.

Oh lastly, thank you to my dear friend Akua who talked me out of a mini spiral I had in the uber on the way to the AGO. I’m quite sure of myself overall but suddenly in third person the very burden of ‘being’ became a weight I didn’t think I could bare and my old anxiety returned in an attempt to cripple me. Thank you Andrew, you know why and thank you Chiara for giving me lip balm before I went on stage lol, I desperately needed it.
Thank you to every single person who sent an email, a DM, greetings after the talk or well wishes from afar. As dark as it’s been I never thought I could be a light for others.

The AGO : Capturing the Ephemeral

On the heels of my Artist’s Talk at the Art Gallery of Ontario (!), I did a photo essay dissecting a few pieces of my work. Matthew had the idea to skip the formal interview and instead approach this from a point introspection. I’ve found that I don’t enjoy talking about myself very much, so this was a welcomed change of pace. You can read the photo essay here.

Salomon Advanced

It’s about 1PM on Monday and I get a text from Liam asking if I want to go the desert in two days for a project he’s doing for Salomon, I answer yes, move around some other shoots I had planned and text back asking ‘what does one wear to the desert?’. I’ve been before but being in LA for a month under the notion of ‘vacation’ I was severely under packed lol.

Liam used thermal imaging to track Ryan as he navigated the terrain while Dom manned the drone (click above for the video scored by Jiin). I took a bunch of BTS throughout the day and assisted where necessary- I took these photos sheerly to have tangible memories I could hold on to.

A bit of context – Liam is one of my closest friends, he moved to LA a couple years ago and every time I’m there we make a point to hang out. We’ve been unsuccessful for the most part tbh, we’ve had momentary joy but this trip we were able to have a plethora of experiences together (I’ll probably do a full trip recap soon).
We spent the entire day in the desert, I watched the sun glisten against rocks soaked from day old rain and the moon bathe silhouettes in blue.

Interview : Camera Buyer ITALIA

‘Othello Grey & Fashion as an Element to Realize Oneself‘ glowed across my screen- the only source of light at 1 AM, as google translate finished reconfiguring words. I smirked, admiring how the title summarized my thoughts. Intrigue.. various levels of intrigue, always take centre stage when I read interviews I’ve done. I mean- to be in a position of having a voice that people desire to hear is something I couldn’t have ever imagined for myself. But the idea of someone else processing that information and ‘labelling’ it with an intro line/title is quite thrilling. Sharing myself and giving someone else the room to give it context is quite a unique experience.

With all that said – read the interview I did with Camera Buyer Italia here. I don’t recall a time that I answered so many fashion related questions, as I operate inside the world of fashion but never view it as the guiding force. This also may be my first international interview, I’ve been doing this for so long now I can’t remember anymore lol… ~aging~

i-D – Bambii “NITEVISION” Video

Following the single came the video(!!), which premiered on i-D – along with an in depth interview. I don’t know if I need to say that I took that photo, I guess its obvious lol (?).
Tbh Bambii’s interviews are always extremely insightful, adding Hazel as the interviewer created the perfect marriage. Read it here and watch the video above.
Oh I was also on set, adding whatever bits of guidance I could while documenting the club scene. This also led to me making an unexpected cameo- I had no intention of being in the video but Bambii (seeing the vision more clearly) insisted I did. I naturally oppose presenting myself over my body of work- so I’m happy she encouraged me to be in the video, I would have regretted if I didn’t.
Here are some of the photos from the day- it was a pleasure to capture this energy in a contained space, many times over the course of my life I’ve felt this euphoric freedom at parties- this may be one of the first times I’ve photographed it (The first set of photos is a shoot Bambii and I did a couple days before the video- we’ve done a lot of shoots lol) .

The Fader – Bambii “NITEVISION”

First thing I want to say is, I love Bambii. I’m sure I said that in previous posts and I guarantee I will express that again.

Alright, so Bambii put out her first(!!) amazing single- (NITEVISION) and it premiered on The Fader. We shot the press images (with MUA by the phenomenal Rahnell) in maybe 2 hours in studio on a sun soaked afternoon. We laughed, joked about things that I can’t remember and she roasted me for licking my lips too much, as usual.

Read the article and listen to the song (or above) which she produced and features Pamputtae.

FLEET – Craig Green SS2020

Component, Simile, Persuasion and this editorial relieved an urge I had to do more studio shoots. I didn’t have any specific direction for this shoot beforehand- I knew two things – 1 : the garments spoke to me in forms 2: they would look wonderful on Tré. The shoot turned into Tré and I examining small moments in between immediate instinctive actions. Both of us doing the poses and pausing to find the actions that felt best on camera.
After reviewing the shoot, I had a thought – ‘in regards to what I felt – it was a fleet of emotions, many which I could not describe in words, a rather peculiar state to exist in, I mean to say -the ability to feel but not to explain what I feel“.
I was analyzing what these small actions transcribe emotionally, what do these instinctive actions say about us? I thought about the awareness to understand what our bodies are saying when they move outside of our conscious will. I’m always in an investigative role when I’m taking photos, through my work with Nomad I’m able to attach that investigation to different designers.

A.P.C. X Carhartt WIP

When I hear the name A.P.C. I think ‘timeless’. Through all my various interactions with the brand over the years – whether that was seeing Paolo Roldan wearing the most insane aged pair, being too thick to fit my legs in Petite Standards (lol) or cursing the brands very existence after seeing a picture Jene standing in front of a group of white models with a sign that read “Last Ni***s In Paris”- that thought ‘timeless’ remained true. 5 Years later- the machine that is fashion moves on, apologies are made, people forget/forgive and here I am shooting an A.P.C. x Carhartt capsule collection.

As soon as I saw the collection all I thought about was shooting it in the most relatable way- no set design, no dramatic lighting, nothing over the top or overtly extravagant. ‘Sell it’ without ‘selling it’, allow the viewer to understand how the pieces fit into their lives without them having to overthink it.

So that was us (Micheal, Moya, Chiara) at Michaels house for an hour and a half hanging out and shooting a few rolls. Easy enough, right?