If you’re not familiar with Olivia Jank, you should be. She’s been shooting the culture, with names like Skepta, Jorja Smith, Travi$ Scott, A$AP Nast, and Big Narstie stepping in front of her lens (and that’s a small few, believe me) you can’t help but notice her work. With cosigns like that, it's maad to think she's only been getting her name out there since February. As Liv innocently puts it “I started off by bringing my film camera to gigs with me and shooting street style at London Fashion Week” - from there Liv has popped up in the culture scene and photographed some of your favourite artists. Get to know the photographer below.
What would you like people to know about yourself?
“I've been taking a camera with me to gigs since I've turned 16, so shooting artists performing hasn't been anything new to me and neither is it me ‘jumping on the bandwagon’.”
If you could choose a film and track that describes you, what would they be?
“I'd say ‘Closer’. I like a strong female cast, I feel connected to both characters being played by Natalie Portman and Julia Roberts. One is a badass chick, her character is very complex though and then you have Julia Roberts who plays a photographer and a much mature woman. Somehow relate to both females. Plus who doesn't enjoy a film with Jude Law. (I LOVE LEON: THE PROFESSIONAL TOO. Natalie Portman just fucking kills it in every film). Song that describes me is “Tomboy” by Princess Nokia, mainly because I like my clothes baggy and I prefer how men's clothes fit. I was a tomboy child, and little tight dresses and heels have never been me. Just everything about this song is great, especially when she sings “my little titties be bookin’ cities all around the world” you just have to respect her. I've actually attended her gig last week, never felt so empowered by a female hip-hop artist before. She's been through shit and so have I, it's hard not to connect the dots.”
Why do you create?
“Because academic subjects were never my strong point....joking! I get a buzz off of taking photos, it's just that feeling when you shoot and you get this feeling of excitement when you go home and connect your camera to your laptop and begin to analyse in detail what I've captured. Same goes to working with film, that butterfly feeling every time I get to pick up my developed film roll. It's nice to communicate your vision and what you see with your own eyes through a medium such as photography with the rest of the world. This is one of the main reasons why I create.”
Name the one place where you feel most creative?
“My flat. It's where I have time to think about my ideas and browse through books and magazines to get inspiration.”
What accumulation of influences made you the artist that you are now?
“Creativity runs through my blood, my mum can draw and paint, and my dad was in a rock band. My parents have always influenced me to do what I enjoy and what I believe in, I'm very thankful for it because not all parents are this supportive. My dad was the one who pushed me towards photography, and me and him have a bond in relation to music since I was a kid. Thinking about it, I used to get inspired by his style when going through old photo albums as a child. My interest in documenting the Music scene is no coincidence. Moving on, I've been collecting fashion magazines for years and going through Dazed or i-D always made me think ‘I want to do fashion shoots like this!’. I'm exploring both fields of photography because I prefer being focused on more than one.”
Choose any era you like - what would you bring back from that time?
“Early 2011, I would bring back Amy Winehouse. Most influential and honest female artist of our era. I listen to ‘Frank’ and ‘Back to Black’ every single day. Every song speaks to me and it's just a shame, that's all we have to settle for now.”
What would you like to see next for your career?
“I'm currently working hard to develop my own style, not only as a Music photographer but also as a Editorial and Fashion photographer. I've a few people from the industry who are taking their time to guide me in the right direction and help me to develop my ideas and to be the best version of myself I can be. So I'm really hoping to see my work in print in a few months, that's one thing I haven't achieved yet.”
To see more of Liv's shots head over to her ‘Gram @livjank.