Let's think about Madonna, Rhianna, Prince, Banksy, and (obviously) Beyonce - all of these awesome one-named creatives. Then, there's Roon! This is not just a nickname that he goes by, but also his Instagram handle under which he has grown an immense fan base. Roon began as a simple cityscape photographer, posting iPhone only photos to his feed. Now, he has evolved into a professional who shoots cityscapes, fashion, and portraiture. He does everything from look books for fashion brands (including Social Decay!) to pairing with NY On Air, a global aerial content company. However, like many photographers, he's camera shy himself. Don't be expecting to see any selfies on his feed. But trust us, he's a handsome fellow!
SOCIAL DECAY: What made you decide to get into photography more seriously?
ROON: I grew up taking pictures. My friends and I would snowboard and take pictures of each other going off jumps and doing tricks. I began to really appreciate how much different angles and composition really mattered. Then in high school, a photography class was offered and I enrolled and began to learn the inner workings of the camera and spent a lot of time developing my own film and working in the darkroom. After moving to NYC, I got a Camera and got back into it, remembering the love of photography and of course NYC is a great subject to do that with.
SD: What do you think made you blow up on Instagram and the New York photography scene so quickly?
R: The Instagram community in NYC is really big… When I first joined Instagram I would always go out shooting by myself - I soon started getting invited out to go shoot with people in the Instagram community and every time I would do that, I got to know more people… and learn from them. That's really how you grow in the beginning by getting out there. I think after that, it's all about taking really solid pictures. New York City is beautiful and people love looking at pictures of it.
SD: What was the transition like going from cityscape photography to portrait and fashion photography?
R: It was a lot of trial and error, I look back at some of the pictures I took in the beginning compared to the ones I am doing now and it is fun to see the growth. I really just enjoy new challenges and continuing to push myself in photography.
SD: Which do you prefer doing, cityscape photography or fashion photography?
R: I like both, I love telling a story with my pictures. Whether it be a model telling a story or a picture of the streets of NYC… I want people to feel something.
SD: What's the coolest photography project you've done to date?
R: I am part of the team at NYonAir, they are an aerial photography company. I get to go up in a helicopter over NYC and shoot. It is incredible!
SD: Who are some photographers that you admire?
R: There isn't one individual that stands out more than another, but I really like to explore lots of photographers because there is a lot to be gained from all them. Finding that one thing from each photographer that resonates with you and in that is the inspiration.
SD: What do you want people to take away from your photography?
R: I try to create a cinematic feel to my images bringing the real life and everyday out in an artistic and interesting way. I like to create a story and make you feel like you are there with the person. Photography is the power to create and connect and my camera is my tool to create that.