Posts Tagged ‘T.I.’
2008 was the Year of Hip-Hop for me, with artists such as Nas, The Game, Birdman, and Omarion stepping in front of my lens. So when T.I. walked into SlickforceStudio in October of that same year, I was ready for anything. “Whatever You Like” and “Live Your Life” were on the radio, and he couldn’t have been more popular. As with any artist, sometimes that comes with it’s share of drama or difficulty, but not with King of the South Tip Harris.
T.I. was joking with the models the entire time, probably to ease the tension (they were, after all, in their underwear), and when his song coincidentally starting playing on our streaming internet radio feed, he sang along and even got a bit goofy with the video camera. When my stylist suggested a shirt to him that he clearly hated, he looked at her, and in classic southern gentleman fashion, replied, “If you really want me to wear that, I will, but I won’t be happy in it.” That was a welcome relief to the last artist I shot who said “F*ck no.”
With high-profile celebs, you don’t have much time. Their people keep them on a tight schedule. I had about two hours with T.I., including make-up and grooming. And as with the majority of magazine work, your art must be compromised with what they need to sell mags. So this certainly wasn’t the most creative shoot I’d ever done, but I tried to get a few character shots that were different from the “tough as nails” look you always see in rapper pics. So I asked him to hold the coffee cup and choke on his coffee, as if the girls making out on the couch were distracting him. All in all, I’m not sure this editorial had any coherence or even made sense, but it’s always a dice roll. I was, however, happy with the shot of T.I. and model Daphne Joy above. In hindsight, I wish I had cheated him a bit more to camera, since some people just look at Daphne’s boobs and don’t even know that’s T.I.