Natiah Jones

natiah jones creativeprofile-photo.jpg

Natiah Jones

Photographer

New York, NY

www.natiahjones.com
instagram @natiahjones

 

WHAT DO YOU DO?

By day, I’m a full time marketer, working at an advertising agency on the marketing and business development team.

Every other second that I spend away from marketing pertains to creativity and relationship management. On nights and weekends, you can find me shooting landscapes in New York, capturing my travels in another city, photoshoots with other creatives, and brand consulting with like-minded entrepreneurs.

WHAT STEPS DID YOU TAKE TO GET TO WHERE YOU ARE NOW?

I’d need almost 27 years to answer this question in its entirety but here are a few:

Constant knowledge consumption - Whether I’m listening to a podcast on Black history/culture, at a bookstore studying photo books, or scrolling Instagram for work that inspires me - I’m ALWAYS consuming helpful information to lift my spirits up and get my creative and intellectual juices flowing.

Saying “No” - We get 24 hours in a day and most of which consists of work and commuting to and from there. If someone or something isn’t worth my time, I have to avoid at all costs. Protecting my energy and directing it towards bringing out the best versions of myself and my art play a pivotal part in where I am now.

Self-audits - Understanding how far I’ve come, where I currently am, and where I ultimately want to be serves as my self-audit system. This is a continuous reminder to move through life with a force of passion to reach that end goal.

Michele_Natiah Jones - Tiah Jones .jpg

How do you stand out in your field?

My rare upbringing, education, career, and lifestyle. I grew up in Washington D.C. during the latter years of the Crack Epidemic. My mom dropped me off in New York in 2010 to go to St. John’s with $200 in my bank account. I studied Sociology and held internships at hip hop and fashion magazines while working in the service industry. Somehow I ended up in the agency life. I’ve been documenting this entire experience through poetry, journaling, and most importantly, photography. I stand out because my story is like a movie, and I’m just shooting stills of the beauty of it all.

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON RIGHT NOW?

I pretty much always have my camera on me and when I don’t, I regret not bringing it. Since I’m constantly creating, I’m always working on something.

WHAT'S YOUR STYLE/PERSPECTIVE/TASTE? DO YOU HAVE A PROJECT THAT REPRESENTS THIS?

While I let the character of my photos speak for themselves, I’ve found that there is always a theme of "power" that reflects from my work. Whether another artist is glaring into my lens or I’m on a New York City bridge shooting the sunset, the key for my audience is to feel that this world is ours for the taking through my work.

Downtown Sunrise_Natiah Jones - Tiah Jones.jpg

WE ARE ALL SLASHIES WITH MULTIPLE SKILLS, WHICH ONE DO YOU WISH YOU COULD DO MORE OFTEN?

Focus is all about time and energy put forth towards whatever the goal might be. I’d like more time and energy to perfect my craft, meet new subjects to shoot, and travel for inspiration.

WHAT IS FRUSTRATING YOU RIGHT NOW?

Finding balance has always been challenging. I’ve lived in New York for 8 years now and each year my life gets busier and busier. Having time to schedule shoots, edit photos, learn new skills, build social content, authentically capture my story, eat and call my grandmother are all so hard to do living here.

IF YOU COULD HIRE SOMEONE FOR $20/HR, WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE THEM DO TO MAKE YOUR DAY EASIER?

Well, for starters it would need to be someone young, wise, and innovative. I could use a youthful and sharp eye to help me connect with different audiences. These people could be models, other creatives to build with, or just people that like my work. I consider myself a storyteller over anything else and I’d love to solely focus on creating. If I could have someone to do the administrative and outreach part of things, that’d be great.

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LET'S BRING OUT THE TIME MACHINE. WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU COULD HAVE TOLD YOURSELF, WHEN, AND WHY?

Hm, I like how my life is going. But if I could have constantly whisper to myself, “what would happen if you just move with your heart and do what you love to the fullest”, from ages 21-25 I think it would have made a monumental difference in my progression and productiveness.

IF YOU COULD TALK TO AN EXPERT TO GAIN MORE INSIGHT ON SOMETHING, WHAT WOULD IT BE ABOUT?

Other than geeky camera talk, I love to hear stories about connections. How that expert has made use of the time they have had here, the people they have met, the wisdom they’ve obtained, and how all this connects to their overall story.

WHAT KIND OF OPPORTUNITIES/PROJECTS ARE YOU LOOKING FOR?

I’m looking to connect with like-minded creatives to help them tell their stories through my photography. I’m open to travel and welcome anyone who wants to explore New York when they are around to create with.

DESCRIBE YOUR IDEAL JOB/CLIENT/COLLABORATION.

My life revolves around my next meal and cup of coffee. So my ideal shoot is to be super chill and casual. I usually meet up for brunch on an early afternoon, do a 2 hour photowalk in a scenic neighborhood, maybe stop midway for a drink or coffee. I do all this by chatting about our passions and experiences and taking photos of them. I feed off of hearing stories. This makes me more in tune with how they want to be captured and makes them more comfortable in front of the camera.

Vinales Valley Cuba_Natiah Jones - Tiah Jones.jpg

WHAT IS YOUR HOURLY RATE, RETAINER, OR SALARY RANGE? 

It really depends on the person, location, and project. I prefer to email about the details and then send a contract.

HOW SHOULD SOMEONE APPROACH YOU ABOUT WORKING TOGETHER?

Send me a short “about me”, project details, and availability.

HOW DO YOU STAY CREATIVE?

I bring my camera everywhere.


This member profile was originally published in January 2019.