Cleveland native Photographer Derek Jerome has realized he can touch lives through making a positive impact on art.
Jerome describes his photography as encompassing anything from what a client wants to presenting visuals that make him feel unstoppable. Due to creating his own lane.
His development as a creative can be attributed to being in a collective space with other creatives, such as photographer Specs giving him his first camera and driving him to be better.
However, he also pulls inspiration from those who didn’t have as much time to support him. His mother passed when he was young, his aunt who passed more recently, and his late friend Tracy “Zuu” Buggs Jr. who consistently motivated him to do more.
“Find a support system, but don’t beg anyone to support you. If you’re dope than you’re dope. Don’t let anyone tell you that you aren’t. No else can tell you how to do your craft because it’s your craft and your vision,” said Jerome.
Jerome has found his niche and is working to prosper through fashion, beauty and editorial style photography and advises other photographers to find their lane that best suits their niche.
“Just like a poet when they hit a dark place they pick up a pen. I find the same with photography,” said Jerome. “When I hit a dark place, I pick up a camera because in a way photography is my poetry.”
His current focus is growing his nonprofit idea because of the people in need of a creative outlet. He believes access to a creative outlet is beneficial to feeding positive development especially in the youth. His nonprofit will use art to help rehabilitate children primarily for the black community but not limited to the black community.
“I want people to remember my brand because I stood for helping others and doing for others while creating a quality product,” said Jerome.