We had the good fortune of connecting with Marcus Lewis and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Marcus, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
We wanted to do something create. Actually use our college degree, ya know? It was an opportunity to just work for ourselves, doing whatever we wanted to do creatively. It’s a graphic design, website development company that organically changes depending on our current goals and inspirations. As of today, slowly transitioning to a more illustrative and photography focus.

My main mindset was, freedom. Freedom to be my own boss, travel wherever, whenever while still being able to do work.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’m just a regular dude, a “creative”, a fake it till ya make it kinda guy. I just don’t really quit. If something doesn’t feel right, I just organically switch focus and change directions. My current path as a photography, I usually tell people … it’s my way of bridging the gap from me to someone else. I come from a mental space of staying away from people as much as I can. Being an introvert was most definitely an understatement. So getting started on this journey was the most intense breaking out of my comfort zone I could possibly do.

I never wanted to burden people or even bother them for a quick second just to say, hi. It felt uncomfortable. I would always think, ” who am I and what’s the point, why would they want to talk with me?” I remember my first days shooting with strangers. I would fiddle with my camera to make it seem like I wasn’t nervous. I would bank on busy hands kept people distracted.

Things started to drastically change when I had sessions with two people, Jess DeJesus (IG: _auramusic. I realized people are, people. They have the same nervous antics as I do, their own mental anxieties, mine weren’t worst than theirs, theirs weren’t worse than mine. We were just regular humans going through life trying out different things every day.

Jess is a dancer /singer at heart, so I asked her if she had music she wanted to listen to. She said, yup, popped her phone in her back pocket and I told her to go have fun. I was the first “stranger” she was photographed by at the time, but she danced. She danced like it was a movie scene. Like we were the only ones in that park and she was in her own world. Movements were so simple and smooth. Smiling from ear to ear, this was it. Allowing people to be themselves in that moment. My mental state fully changed at that point.

Photography wasn’t about me. It was about letting people know they can be and feel however they want without judgement ridicule or weighed down by expectations. Seeing Jess in her natural state of being gave me the motivation to get out of my own head. To learn about the people I interact with. Listen to what makes them tick, find out what they’re afraid of, learn a little something about my life by learning a bit about theirs.

Now I can’t help but poke my nose in people’s lives. See how they’re feeling, try to put a smile on their faces. My internal motto is, make at least one person smile every day. We can learn so much from everyone around the world, I’m just using the excuse of being a photographer to connect on a deeper lever with people.

Photography is such an intimate thing. Something that captures everything. Memories, moments, vulnerab0lities, fears, aspirations, grief, happiness all in a single frame. Once you can have someone open their lives and souls up for you like that, it’s such an incredible feeling.

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.
Ha, once I figure this out for myself, I’ll let ya know lol. I have the worst time planning out fun things to do, so I end up just roaming the streets, people watching, and staring up at the big building, or gazing down the river watching rusty waves splash on each other. That’s the beauty of New York. Wherever you turn there’s always something amazing to experience.

It would be hopping on a bike to maybe sightsee some graffiti in Brooklyn. The Bushwick Collective is phenomenal for stuff like that. Good eats are everywhere you can point your nose and sniff. I have friends that are constantly finding new places and things to go, so I can also just pop open their Instagram and see where the new hot spot things to experience are.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
The list is definitely a long one. At the top, I’d have to say my brother, Marquis. After years of roaming around with my head in the clouds or deep in the dirt, I noticed how much of an impact and effort I was putting in to make him proud of my every move. I’ve looked up to him even in his craziest of times, to his current successes as a human and personal trainer.


Website: vsmarcuslewis.com

Instagram: marcusjuliuslewis

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vsmarcuslewis

Twitter: vsmarcuslewis

Image Credits
Neon Purple – Emily – model/mua Desert Clouds – Divya Sethi – Model Gold Picture – Isebella – Model – Rachna Ahuja – mua Sheer Gown – Revana Rahman – model Purple Orange – Avisha Patel – model

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.