Interview with Larry B
Artist: Photographer, Stylist,Creative Mind
Location: London, UK.
Written by Rivah Kray
Student, Photographer, Stylist and honorary descendent of both Jean-Michel Basquiat and Tupac Shakur, Larry B is one enchanting individual. Larry’s deeply honest and inviting character reflects highly through his street photography, exhibited via his popular tumblr page ‘From The Endz’.
So what is the motivation behind your whole movement?
People are one of the main things that drive me. I like meeting people and learning about people, and not so much creative people but I’m really into average Joe’s and Jolene’s like I mean I take pictures of young kids because I find them the most interesting. I find that when you’re really young you’re are at that point where anything can kind of happen and its quite exciting to see the way kids kind of follow and make do what they have. Its very much people that make me get up. Also teaching is something that I want to get into, I like young people, I just feel like when I was young I didn’t have anyone who was young enough and inspiring enough to kind of look up to.
Name a few people you would like to work with if given the opportunity?
Jamel Shabazz is a photographer who started taking pictures of the people around him in New York in the 80’s and and now he has a body of work, portraits of just street style, portraits of 80’s kids like fly girls and fly boys and they look amazing. He started his stuff just because he didn’t want to be doing all the crap other people were doing and he just picked up his camera and went around taking pictures of his friends and people that he knew. Jamal Shabaz is still alive in New York and I want to go see him and work with him, that would be amazing. Who else is there. If I could I would like to be best friends with Jean – Michel Baquiat, but I cant because he’s died, but he’s amazing. He was a painter, really childish, really scrappy paintings. He looks like me or I look like him (I’ll show you a picture).
Are you down with the whole twitter/ tumblr hoopla? How is this an important outlet for you and others?
I tried to fight it, but this is what we are, this is what we are now. There is so much nostalgia going on right now that its so easy to say “ Oh I’m not really into this now because back in the day we didn’t need it and back in the day’, but back in the day they did what they did at the time. But now things move faster like with Tumblr , Twitter and Facebook and shit like that, I’m kind of into it, I am, I don’t really follow it but I definitely use it for my work. I find some of the most inspirational images on Tumblr. I think its made us lazy because its so easy, like if I’m writing an essay for school I won’t go to the library, the library isn’t the first place I think of to research. But you can just jump onto the Internet and find something in 5 seconds.
Do you feel like what you are doing is important and in what way beneficial to your sector?
I think it is important because its real and its raw and its not in any way pretentious. Street style now is very much a general fashion trend instead of individual style. I see young people although there is a general look, you make it your own, I’ve got my school bag but I got my graffiti on it and there’s different things that different people pay attention to, so I think its showing styling to people who have forgotten what style is. I’m not showing it to the young people I’m showing it to the people in the fashion industry and the people who are interested in style what they don’t see normally, so I think its quite important.
How do you separate yourself from others who are in the same industries as yourself?
A big thing about me is my friends and the people that I’m around. I don’t have many business relationships I have a lot friendships with a lot of people that are doing creative things and its funny because a lot of my friends that do creative stuff, they hardly know what I do and I hardly know what they do and its just because we’re friends. I think that having that kind of frame for me really works. I’m just surrounded by people that are really fun, that is how I separate myself from the industry.
Where is your favourite place to create art?
I do a lot of my work on my laptop so anywhere I am. Anywhere and everywhere. I mean my room isn’t the most amazing place so I wouldn’t say my room because a lot of my work is kind of spontaneous.
The art and party scene have begun to collaborate in recent years, why do you think this has happened and do you agree with such a partnership?
I personally think people go out to creative spots because they think that will make them creative or that will make them ‘it’ and I don’t think that’s the best way to go about it but what ever floats your boat. I just like to go out and listen to some music and dance.
What have you stolen/learned or have been influenced from another artist lately?
Okay so the two Work It girls that I work with, Loren and Sara, have this kind of amazing, amazing, amazing mentality and way of work were It’s all possible. So if anything comes their way, yes they can do it. It’s kind of the ‘Yes! Can-do’ attitude and I have kind of adopted that big time.
How important is it to you that art has a relationship with the rest of the world and why?
When you do something or when you’re interested in something it kind of becomes art by you putting it out and showing people, I think your personal interest in that makes it relevant. There is always someone in the world who wants to hear something. You might be speaking to someone or you might not but when you find someone that you’re speaking to that’s what makes it come back to the world because you’re now attaching yourself to somebody else. I think its possible to do art and not be connected to anybody else and for it to be very much shallow but I think that’s when it’s not honest. Honest opinions are needed in order to change the way people see things.
Describe to us the kind of person a fan of yours would be?
Someone that would like my work is someone who is interested in youth culture, interested in style, would be very much open to anything.
Finally describe your art as if we were blind?
My work is raw, youth based, style based and very dark, well its not very dark actually, happy, fun and young, no sorry, youth-culture that’s my work.