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Noah Stephens

I purchased my first dSLR in January 2009. In April 2010, I started a photo project called The People of Detroit. Two years after I bought my first “real” camera – a creative director in China saw the project and hired me to shoot an eight-portrait ad campaign for McDonald's China. I've been working full-time on my photo project and as an editorial and commercial photographer ever since.

So, what led me to photography? I grew up in a household that strictly adhered to a religion that forbade photography. According to this religion, as the author of all life, god was the sole copyright owner of images of living things. Since god was apparently not interested in granting licenses, photography of living things was strictly prohibited.

As a result of this stricture, I only have three pictures of myself as a child (all taken before my family converted to this religion). This makes me value a portrait in a way that many people probably do not. I innately appreciate the process of making someone's photograph; the process of creating proof of their existence. On some level I think creating images of other people helps me make peace with not having any of my childhood self.

So, that's the long winding road that has led me to now. Take a look around and leave a comment or two if you please.

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  • Detroit, Michigan, United States