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Rising Stars: Meet Kevin Hammond II

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kevin Hammond II.

Hi Kevin, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I grew up in a household around a lot of creativity. My mother was a singer, and my father was a bass player and he could also draw really well, so naturally just anything creatively was instilled in me at an early age. In school I was always the kid that was drumming on my desk, daydreaming about futuristic things and sometimes I would get in trouble for it lol. I also grew up in a household where we would have movie nights a lot, and I always loved how movies were put together, from the lighting to the set design, the music score and really just how everything came together to tell a story (I’m partial to period pieces). Fast forward many years later lol, I was always good at computers so I decided to go to college for computer science but I remember on my way to where my computer class was, I would always walk pass the art room. You would see sculptures, painting and all types of photography posted on the wall, and I would just spend my free time learning about the artists and read books about them.

As for many of us, life happens, and I stopped going to school due to a working conflict. I always knew I wanted to go back to school but wasn’t sure for what I attempted to go back just taking courses here and there, but nothing really resonated with me, and I felt like I was just doing it to be doing it. Now I was always a person that had a camera on me to record or take pictures (even back in the day when camera phones weren’t that great lol) but I always thought that I had an eye for certain moments. I never forget when my parents bought me my first professional camera which was a Canon Powershot and you couldn’t tell me nothing! I took that camera everywhere with me and one of my very first set of pictures down in D.C. at every place you can think of, Washington Monument, the White House, Smithsonian Museum or just random people on the street. It was then that I really started to grow deeper in my passion for photography. It still never occurred to me to pursue photography outside of it being a hobby until about 2017. I upgraded and bought myself a Canon Rebel T6! I started taking that camera everywhere also lol. I would take it to the jazz festivals, any type of event that I would hear about, I would just show up and take pictures and then post them on my social media.

From there, people would hit me up and ask me to take their pictures. I remember my first paid gig was to take photos for this conference. I was nervous as all get out but after it was done, I actually surprised myself at some of the moments that I was able to capture and from that particular point I was sold! I was convinced that I need to make this thing work and make it more than just a hobby and from that moment on “Think Snap” was birthed. I was so hungry and excited that I finally found something that really rejuvenated my creativity. Now fast forward to when the pandemic hit, I decided to go back to school again and this time for something I knew that I was excited about and wanted to do. I enrolled at Wilmington University (which I currently attend) into their film/video production program. I had been doing photography for three years at that point but I knew I wanted something to push me further and help grow and make me better at telling stories. It was the best decision I ever made! So when the pandemic first hit, I started getting all these ideas for movies in my head and I wrote my very first script (which I am in the process of casting) I am currently in piecing together my first art show to showcase some pieces that are special to me. I want to continue to tell stories through the lens of my camera and create memories for anyone who trusts me! I do weddings, corporate events, baby showers, headshots, you name it!

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
It has not always been a smooth road, I would be lying if I said it was. Some of the struggles at least for me are always the battles internally. Even though I knew that I had a certain eye for capturing things differently and even with people believing in me, I always second-guessed myself. In this world there are a lot of creatives geniuses sometimes, especially early on in my journey, I wouldn’t really put myself in certain spaces or take certain gigs just for the fear of someone not liking it. Also there was the fear of success. What I mean by that is sometimes when you know you can do something well, that fear to keep up and always outdo what you have done before can hinder you sometimes. I had to really take a step and remember that If God gave me the talent and provided the opportunities that everything will work out just fine!

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I do work a corporate job. Photography is my real passion as I mentioned previously. I specialize in landscape photography, fashion photography & portrait photography. I’d like to think that what I am known for is my attention to detail. My job as a photographer is to evoke emotion. I want you to be able to look at my art and connect with everything that is going on inside a photo. One of my favorite movies is Do the Right Thing by Spike Lee and if you watch the movie and look at the way its shot, you can understand and feel every emotion. His camera placement is impeccable and that’s something that I try and bring with me to every shoot that I do. What I am most proud of is the fact that I actually am now doing something that I love and that inspires other people. Capturing a maternity shoot, a wedding, a birthday, special moments like that make me proud that people would choose me to help capture a life-changing moment.

What sets me apart from others, I believe is my heart. I love to connect with people and meet them where they are. A lot of times, people are too afraid to have conversations with people to find out who they are first. I like to have conversations and see what people are all about. I bring a professionalism and certain level of confidence that puts people at ease.

Are there any important lessons you’ve learned that you can share with us?
The most important lesson that I have learned is that we are put on this earth to do good. No matter how many times we get knocked down, we have to keep pushing. The gift/talent that we have inside of us isn’t for ourselves, but it is for the next person. We are all here to be servants to the next person. Whatever we go through in life is to inspire and help change the world.

Pricing:

  • Head Shots- $50 per hour
  • Weddings $100 per hour
  • Maternity Shoots- $75 per hour
  • Fall Mini Shoots -$50
  • Portraits – $75 per hour

Contact Info:

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