“Photography is a blast. I don’t shoot anything that doesn’t make me smile – including people. The end result typically makes me smiles. And, if you ever get to be on set with me, I never stop laughing, joking and fooling around” – Calvin Brockington
Calvin Brockington is an editorial-fashion photographer, based out of Dallas – one of the Lone Star State’s thriving metropolises. Calvin is an inspiration to us all – pushing through adversity, Calvin’s zest for life and fun has served him well. He is the inspiration for us all to pick up a camera and never put it down.
“I was a novice photographer in Florida around 2002. I worked at a Wolf Camera store in the heart of Fort Lauderdale and one of my dearest friends ran an agency in Miami. So I would shoot for her, here and there, learning along the way. And then digital came about. I was so immersed in film and processing that, for me, to start all over in digital format would have cost me a fortune. Again though, I was only a novice not anywhere close to being considered a professional so, I sold my equipment and began following another passion that I had which was makeup artistry. About 2005, the company that I work for expanded into Texas and I was offered a position there. So I moved. About 2010, my health was pretty bad and I had already fought cancer twice. Well, here I was again on an operating table. This one was bad, they were removing organs. All I remember, before I was put to sleep, was me looking up to the light above me and saying, “If you get me out of this one, I promise I will go back to doing what I love.” As soon as I got home and out of the hospital, I went online and bought a camera I could afford at the time. And the rest is where we are now. Of course I’ve changed equipment since then. [smiles]
“For me, it’s been an extreme learning curve. Dallas is a fashion capital. But it’s still a very conservative and commercial business city. I started my career in Dallas not really thinking of what type of work I need to be shooting in order to enter the market here. I started out like a lot of male-focused photographers – shooting body work. After all, the blogs liked it and the magazines liked it. But it wasn’t what Dallas liked. I love fashion, in fact, that’s what my degree’s in. But no one knew that, because all I ever shot was half-naked guys in underwear. So as I worked more and more, with stylists, models and agencies here, I really have taken the opportunity to show my love for fashion and fashion photography.
“I had great parents once I was adopted. I grew up in very bad circumstances until about 8 years old. My mom and dad couldn’t be more opposite. So as kids we got a lot of knowledge through two different ways of learning. The great thing though is that we weren’t told we couldn’t do anything. My mom and dad always told us we could do whatever it was we wanted to. I got a lot of my early inspiration from my middle school art teacher. She would give me old fashion magazines and she even got me a free pass to a summer photography camp. I think she saw it long before I did?
“I didn’t go to college for photography. I went for ‘The Science of Fashion Design and Textile’. In my head I was always going to be a fashion designer…Continue reading our exclusive interview with Calvin Brockington in HUF Magazine issue 40.