My name is Jamell Tate; I am a photographer who was born and raised in New Orleans. I love this city so much, and it has so many beautiful, wonderful and ugly moments, and I felt like the best way to document some of those moments was to capture them and freeze them in time literally. Here you will find everything from street musicians and second lines to weekly floods and 18th-century Spanish architecture.
Artist + Jamell Tate
Describe your art in three words. Cultural, Emotional, and Vivid
Describe yourself in one word. Zealous
What do you love the most about creating art in New Orleans? What particular part of your immediate environment, in your neighborhood specifically influences your work? I love creating art in this city because I believe it is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and it has many stories to tell. I currently live in the historic Treme neighborhood, there are still so many gems around every corner.
Describe your creative process. Are there any rituals or rites of passage you exercise before you begin a new piece? I usually meditate for a few minutes to clear my head. I do a lot of candid photography so it's important to be in the moment.
Where do you draw inspiration? I am inspired by the joy and pain of everyday life in New Orleans. That's why I love second lines so much, they celebrate life and morn death at the same time.
Who are your artistic influences or gurus? The biggest influence in my life is a photographer by name of Pableax Johnson. He's been working with Mardi Gars Indians and social aid & pleasure clubs for over a decade. The rest can be contributed to the city, the need to create and maintain the culture is undeniable and downright contagious.
In New Orleans, art and music go hand in hand. What type of music, band or song lyric best describes your work? If you put your ear up to my work you would most likely hear bounce music, it's bold and vibrant. It's so New Orleans, for the people, by the people.
Where can we find you when you are not creating art? I love live music, you can find me on Frenchmen St., at Bacchanal, or following a second line band anywhere.
What is your favorite time of day/day of the week/month of the year? Mardi Gras, hands down. I usually end up taking photos from sun up to sun down. Starting with the Skull and Bones gang at 5 am, then Indian meetups around 6 pm.
What is something people don’t know about you? A fun fact. I have a Shihtzu named Suga, she's perfect.
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