Car Fire, Detroit Fire Department Detroit MI

Amy Nicole ACRONYM Headshot

Model & MUA: Amber Rose

Las Vegas Desert Abandoned Waterpark

Model & MUA: Adriana Villanueva

Model: Lauren J. Williams

Model & MUA: Syd Vicious

Model & Stylist: Laura Cor

Model & MUA: Samantha Cullen

Model: Colin Matthew MUA:Jamie Gasper

November 21st, 2018
Jesse Gussow

Photographer Amy Nicole (aka ACRONYM) does an impeccable job of catching your attention with colour. She’s the kind of photographer who doesn’t shy away from all styles of photography, including shooting concerts and bands, macro photography and landscapes. You can see all these styles finding their way into her work, by using shapes and landscapes as the backgrounds to her shots. Using this skill compliments the decaying sceneries she shoots so well. Her work has a brilliant dark, macabre and post-apocalyptic vibe that reminds viewers of their own urban decay.


Where are you from?

I hail from Detroit, Michigan!


How did you get interested in Photography?
My dad was always into photography and had a camera in his hand constantly. He died when I was young, but it made a lasting impression on me. I started taking photos of my friends in middle school and then learned darkroom photography in high school. From then on, I started pursuing digital photography and journalism.


What inspires your work?
Everything around me. My friends, movies, comic books, and Detroit. It varies from style to style of photography.


How would you describe your photography style?
Most people tell me to gravitate toward a niche, but I am not good at doing that. Too many things around me interest me, so I work with models, non-models, shoot concerts, photograph cityscapes, do macro-styles in nature, and even stop for protests occasionally. When I boil it down, I do portraiture and urban exploring mostly, and people find that my work has dramatic darks contrasting with extreme lights. I find that the contrast has become a signature of my work, as well as certain angles that I tend to use, but I don't know how to describe it other than that. I'm like the Joker; I just "do things."


Who are some of your biggest influences?
The people around me tend to influence me the most. A lot of my portraiture is drawn from the person's personality that I'm working with. That is a very important thing to me. I know a lot of talented, inspirational people, so I try to capture who they are in my photograph. As far as any influential photographers, Peter Lindbergh is one of my favorites, as is photographer/videographer Peter McKinnon.


What brand camera do you use? Why did you chose that brand?
I have used multiple brands. Canon, Nikon, and Sony, as well as lenses from Rokinon and Tamaron. Canon was always my go to, and I found it produces better warm tones (good for portraiture). Nikon tends to produce more green tones (more of a landscape photographer's camera). Sony is great for all types, and it's currently what I'm using, both for photo and video. The only issue I have with Sony is their lenses are few and far between and are WAY more expensive, which is why I use an adapter and have lenses from Sony, Tamaron, and Canon.


When doing a shoot what do you do to prepare?
I've made it a habit to go through my bag and make sure that I have everything I typically use and organize it to make sure I have my cards, lenses, flashes, whatever I need. A lot of my shoots require some interesting wardrobe choices as well (like my 'Detroit Gotham' set), and a lot of the things that are in those shoots I created by hand (Enchantress's Headpiece, Two-Face's Blazer, etc). I took drawing & painting, jewelry, ceramics and digital art in high school in addition to tech classes, and all of that helps me add additional pieces of my shoots that people may not even know about or realize that I created.


What feeling do you experience when doing a photo shoot?
If it's a shoot that I created a concept for with a friend/client, typically it's a euphoric experience. We're creating something unique that people haven't seen, or putting our own spin on something that people will love. I won't lie, I'm totally a people pleaser, so I try to create things that will invigorate my friends and fan base with excitement.


If you had a time machine, what would you do with it?
Go back in time to photograph some great concerts like Queen performing at Live Aid in London in 1985, or Woodstock. Historical moments as well, like MLK delivering his 'I Have A Dream' Speech.


Do you edit your own photos? If so, how heavily edited is your work?
I do edit my own photos, and some of it is heavily edited. When it comes to portraiture, there are two modes: there's Standard Portraiture, and there's Fashion Photography. Most of the Fashion Photography, (ones that we try to get published) are up to industry standards as far as smoothing and sharpening. If there is a concept that my friends have, or if they want to maintain their "real life" look, then I don't remove any heritage on their person. As far as landscapes and urban exploring, a lot of it is color correction or color editing.


What do you want the viewer to experience when they see your work?
I want them to see the hard work that we've poured into producing a piece (me and my model) and I hope that they feel emotions when they look at my work and think "Wow, this person has a vision," or feel as if they're seeing something for the first time when seeing it in a new light.


How have you grown as a photographer, from when you first started, to now?
Oh God, yes, haha. Amber Rose and I actually did a photoshoot recently that was a skeleton. She did the makeup both times, and I photographed both times. The first set was done in 2011, and the second in 2018. Putting them side-by-side, I can see the growth in both of us. Her in particular; I have been photographing her since she was 15, and we've grown together for years. It blows my mind to see the difference in my work. I still have some soft spots for some of my old stuff, but I've been trying to retrace my steps and do new versions of landscapes with my better equipment and more fine-tuned eye.


Is there an aspect of photography that you would like to get more proficient at?
Studio Lighting. That is my blind spot! I'm so used to using Natural Light for EVERYTHING. I have a friend that is planning to work with me on lighting in exchange for editing help. I do a lot of trades with my creative friends that way - we help each other out!


What kind of dreams do you have when you’re sleeping?
Scary ones. A lot of my nightmares are trauma-based for the most part. Then sometimes I dream about WWE Wrestlers being in my daily life. Which is honestly weirder than the scary dreams.


If you could shoot anywhere in the world with anyone, where would it be, and with whom?
I would absolutely love to photograph Jack White and Eminem. Both of them are Detroit artists; both of them are very interesting to me. I also wouldn't ever pass up an opportunity to photograph Jeff Goldblum. The man is a national treasure! It's honestly funny considering I typically photograph females that all the people I want to photograph are these males, but hey, what can I say, I like what I like!


Do you prefer Oreo or Fudgee-O cookies?

I have never had a Fudgee-O cookie. I don't know what they are, and I'm not sure we have those here! Gimmie all the Oreos though. And Trader Joe's Peppermint Joe Joe's (which are exactly like Oreos).

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