Born of Venezuelan & Trinidadian decent and adopted by a Puerto Rican family, Johnny Nuñez has not taken his privilege lightly. From sleeping in his car to standing on tables, pushing more aggressive paparazzi’s out the way to being the only photographer Naomi Campbell hires to photograph her birthday in St. Barts every year, he has earned his tan in the sun (and his spot in the G4).
A photographers job is always to capture the moment, trap it in a two dimensional frame while telling a three dimensional story. Johnny went beyond that, in an industry where “posing” is frowned upon, he got rappers to stop while their eyes sung to us. Hip Hop is an industry fueled by image. Image and honesty don’t always meet, and if you leave it to a record label the truth and reality might as well be two different planets. But Johnny knew the truth. It’s more than just some colorful designer gear and bling, it’s more than a crew of goons from the hood, more than the people in the photo with you, waving microphones and money around like a swag hurricane.
It’s a relationship.
Just like you invest your time & ears to listen to an artist and find a personal connection, a photographer must use his eyes in the same way, scanning everything in his vision to find something we can all relate to while maintaining the integrity of the art. Johnny isn’t showing up to the premier and yelling at celebrities to stop for him, they are yelling at him to be noticed. As a man who has never taken an unflattering photo of a subject, they all know that if someone is going to protect the fragility of art and defend its context down to scraped knuckles and black eyes, it’s him.
Our gang at Lafayette NYC didn’t take it lightly either. Consider Johnny Nunez’s Lafayette collection the Christmas in June you didn’t know you needed but glad it happened. Highly recommended, collect them all, and please act accordingly.