Today we’d like to introduce you to Dae Howerton.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I was born in Newark, New Jersey. I grew up in the projects (Prince Street Projects). It was rough but it was some of the best times of my life. I grew up fortunately poor. I watched my mom work hard and constantly progress. She was an icon to me. Everything that she would set out to do she did it. She wanted to be an EMT and she was. I remember her saying she wanted to be a corrections officer and she set out to do it. I remember her studying days in and days out to pass the test and she passed it. She was my role model and still is today. My mom gave me and my sister everything she could. She noticed as a kid, I was really talented. I was into dance and drawing and she nurtured those talents and put me in classes. Which lead me into getting into one of Newark NJ’s top schools called Arts High School.
Arts High was a performing art high school that house some of the tristate’s most talented kids. We had majors that we studied. I was an art major where I studied Visual arts, Ceramics, Painting, Sculpting, Art History, and PHOTOGRAPHY. That’s when the art bug bit me. I fell in love with film photography and the darkroom. During that time, I also began to produce music. I’ve always had that duality of music and photography. I use to shoot my production team The Klasix and do graphics and began to shoot rappers for mixtape covers.
Knowing the mixtape/rap world wasn’t where I wanted to be, I began looking for opportunities to work with magazines, fashion, and beauty. I had this amazing opportunity to do some design and retouch work for magazines like Vibe magazine and The Source. This was my way into music and photography, although it wasn’t under the capacity that I wanted. I was eager to be in the building. At that time, I was assisting and 2nd shooting with amazing photographers like Karl Fergison and Ben Foster. A close photographer friend who I had been asking a million questions about photography introduced me to a photographer by the name of Dallas J. Logan.
Dallas brought me on as an assistant. I assisted him for about three years until we decided to be a photography duo. He introduced me to the beauty and fashion world. I studied for years. Over the years, we’ve had the opportunity to shoot for brands like Oribe, Superdry, Target, Makeup Geek, Revlon, Ebony Magazine…
About five years ago, I had the opportunity to produce for Bryson Tiller with my partner Black Mic and I was living in Brooklyn at the time and had to fly to LA where he was recording. Dallas said find us an apartment and I’ll get us there. I found us an apartment and we moved. Since I’ve been here, I’ve been living my dream.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It was not at all. I’ve always been the outsider, I’m the only person in my family who was into the arts. I had to make my way. I didn’t have any mentors or help until I was 27. I’m self-taught and I work for everything I got. Coming from the projects, my mom taught me I can have everything I want I just have to work for it.
Alright – so let’s talk business. What else should we know about your work?
Dae Howerton Photography is my business, I’m an editorial, commercial, fashion, beauty and advertising photographer. I specialize in beauty, fashion and since I’ve been in LA Celebrities.
I’m known for my clean beauty and fashion work. I definitely have a perspective. I’m most proud of being able to work in this industry that I set out to work in. I think me building my business as a young black photographer makes me super excited and happy.
What sets me apart from others is my work. It looks expensive it looks cinematic and otherworldly beautiful. You wouldn’t expect that when you meet me.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Ummmm, I’m not lucky. I’m not one of those people who had things given to them. I work really hard for everything that I have. I wish I had luck. I think not being lucky helped me be who I am today. Knowing that I can have everything I want, I just have to work for it. I guess thank you for having no luck at all.
All the photos were shot and retouched by myself, (Double photo with big hair) Model: Lola Declet, Makeup and Hair Damion Gerardo Stylist: Butch Johnson, (Girl in car) Model: Jessica Morrow Makeup: Hendra Nasril, Hair: Shelli Mosley Stylist Monica Cargile, (Guy holding camera ) Model Broderick Hunger, (Girl hair blowing) Model: Magdelina. Hairstylist Brandy Michele Makeup artist: Reginal Rafael, (model with hood) Model: Alex Erickson, (model with flowers) Model : Juliette Perkins, Hairstylist Shelli Mosely Makeup Artist Joseph AdaAdivari, (model in hallway) Jessica Morrow Makeup: Hendra Nasril, Hair: Shelli Mosley Stylist Monica Cargile, (model with bob cut) Model: Atika Hair and Makeup Swiney Monique, (model with red lip) Model: Taylor Howard makeup artist Lakeesha “LB”Charles