Originators: Terence Price
See the grittier side of Miami through Terence Price's lens.
Pick up Issue 52 or 53, flip it around and understand that we have a deep appreciation for art here. It’s why we let artists design our back cover. We began as a graffiti zine, and as our scope widened to other art forms, so did our interest in art itself. In line with that sentiment, we bring you Originators, an ongoing series that profiles visual artists working behind the scenes to produce the art, television, and work we can only describe as dope.
Urban photography is essentially a visual art that captures the very essence of the ghetto. It documents the grit of the streets, usually capturing the struggle in its beautiful, robust form. There aren’t many people who can handle this craft, being that most ghettos aren’t exactly safe places. Some folks just can’t shoot subjects who represent hard realism or urban issues.
Enter Terence Price: a photographer who deals with said craft in Miami. His photos depict the southern cities of Florida, representing the woes and beauties of the concrete jungles. He aims to bring awareness to his city and aid in telling the story around most of his city’s life. He is the tour guide of southern Florida, showing locals in the city that their streets can be beautiful once again, and telling others the state of his sometimes gloomy hometown.
Mass Appeal: Who are you and what do you do?
Terence Price: Konichiwa! I’m Terence Price, a 23-year-old full time South Florida adventurer, equipped with a bag full of film and an obsession with street photography. I take photos to change the future and inspire the masses. I was born and raised in Miami, Florida; currently living in Miami Gardens, better known as Carol City.
MA: How’d you get into photography?
TP: It just randomly happened one day… My mom saw something in one of my photos. I was in my junior year in high school back in 2006, and my mother brought this little cheap digital camera. It was a Kodak Easyshare, and it came with a printer.
One sunny afternoon, I set up a few toys to do a theme photo shoot, or something like that. I just started playing with shadows until I was able to get a decent image. I showed my mom, and she said something like, “Wow you should get into photography, you could be a photographer.” So after that, I took my mom’s camera and started shooting all my friends when we would go out and skate. It wasn’t ’till after I graduated that I realized that this is what I wanted to do forever. I learned about using film, the art of street photography, and stepped out into the city as a newborn.
MA: Why photography as opposed to any other medium?
TP: Well, to me, photography is everything. There’s so much proof in having a photograph, it tells a story. I know that Photoshop exists and it can bend the truth of a photograph, which sucks in my opinion, but a camera is an object that can literally stop time. That means so much to our lives in this day and era.
I’m not saying photography is the best, especially because realism/portraiture paintings, all the way down to hieroglyphics, were mainly the way to document things back in the day. Photography just allows me to express my feelings and introduce my life and self to people. It’s the one medium that I’m really good at. [Laughs] I can draw up an epic battle of stick figures though.
MA: How do you choose subjects to photograph?
TP: Usually, before I step out of the door to walk through the streets, I think to myself about certain subjects or places I want to capture. Whether it’s people or a bunch of miscellaneous objects laying around that are simply overlooked.
As of lately, I’ve been trying to capture photos of a lot more people. I have a slight fear of speaking to random people and asking for a photograph… It’s one of the things that is holding me back in my photos, but I’m slowly coming out of my shell, one day at a time.
MA: Is there a certain type of message you’re trying to convey in your photography?
TP: Yes and no. It’s hard for me to really know what the message is. One part of me wants to just introduce the viewers to something they’ve never seen before. Or something they have seen before, but now in a different light from another perspective. It’s a little confusing, but I do want my photos to be able to tell a story, and hopefully change things or bring people together. I want to make people feel.
For the past year and a half I’ve been working on a photo series in Carol City. The city’s been going through some rough times lately with all types of crime, and it’s sad because it’s really a dope town to me. I want to capture the good times of the city with it’s rough times, to portray a place that’s extremely strong. I’m doing this in hopes to bridge the gaps, make its residents see that the crimes need to cease and the city needs to rise together, to become better as a whole.
Getting inspired by photographers from the early ages of photography showed me that I too can make a change. I’m simply documenting life in Carol City. Tough question, I think about this all the time. The message is there though.
MA: What’s your favorite part about photography?
TP: The places it can take you. Doing photography can open up all types of doors, allowing you to see things that you would’ve never paid much attention to.
I’ve seen a lot and I’m still pretty young. One day I see myself as an old man telling some great stories about my life as a photographer and seeing the wow factor in people’s faces. Or even being seen as hero with a camera. [Laughs] But in all seriousness, it can introduce you to a lot of great people, good or bad. Being a photographer is a journey, and I’m happy to be on it.