noun || yəNG ˈhefā

Nathan James is a photographer and manager currently based in California. 

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YJ: What’s your current hustle?

NJ: I'm a photographer and an manger.

YJ: Has what you’re doing now been a life-long interest?

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NJ: No — not at all. I played basketball and had an understanding that I'd pursue that. Unfortunately, I had to transition my career goals because of a knee industry. After working in different art forms, I eventually found myself heavily involved in concert photograph. The first artist I shot was Mac Miller, then went on tour with Tory Lanze. 

After working in photography, I noticed how important content was and decided to pursue managing an artist. And now I help him shape his following (Youtube, Instagram etc.) and we have record label offer — 1 yr and 4 months later. 

YJ: Where do you find inspiration, when needing it?

NJ: That really comes down to me being a perfectionist. When it comes to creativity, I love creative control because the hardest thing about being in the creative industry is trying to communicate your vision.  So I've found, that if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. I find my inspiration from, my own ideas execute whatever vision myself. 

YJ: If you could tell your younger self one thing about life, what would it be?

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NJ: “Live tired.” 

YJ: What do you think is different about your creative process? 

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NJ: As a photographer, what I feel is different — I try to get my models to truly learn how to "pro-model" without being a pro. With that, they’re constantly moving and I'm looking to capture their movement. Allowing a model to reach his or her personal comfortability level with the photographer, and with the atmosphere, they are in is important when getting the best shot. 

The management side, A big part of our success if putting stuff in the world that will last forever. We like to remain consistent with the music, photography, and videography.

That’s what sets us apart. And understanding it's not just about the creative. There’s a business side to it too. You’ve got to have a plan. OR a business model. People have to see to your work. 

YJ: What would you say to someone who may think that their talent is not an ideal career path?

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NJ: Fall on your face a million and one times. Until you get it right or find a new solution. There’s a lot of stuff that’s not the ideal career path, that’s the most exciting thing about a non-traditional career path — the uncertainty.

YJ: What don't people do in your industry that you’d like to see them do? 

NJ: I would love to see more photographers getting paid for the work they do. Being compensated and appreciated for what they do. Most photographers undervalue themselves, but that’s art as a whole. Art is underappreciated. 

For more of Nathan, follow him here