• 7.28.11

    Kareem Black Photographs Aziz Ansari for Complex

    Kareem Black photographs Aziz Ansari for the August/September 2011 cover of Complex. The Parks and Recreation actor and comedian covers the Style & Design issue. Ansari hits the big screen later this summer in 30 Minutes or Less and inside the magazine, discusses being in the studio with Kanye West and learning from Judd Apatow.

    The shoot's concept was to create an interactive cover. Ansari painted the issue's cover headlines on the wall over the blue paint while Black photographed the set. The magazine's title was later added in post-production. Black says he is proud and happy with the finished product.

    The August/September issue of Complex is on newsstands this week.

    See more of Black's photography here.

  • 3.11.11

    Kareem Black Photographs Chris Brown for Page Six Magazine

    Chris Brown is promoting his upcoming album "F.A.M.E." with an interview and spread in Page Six Magazine. Kareem Black photographed the R&B singer for the March 10th issue. Inside, Brown discusses his passion for street art, what he's learned in the past two years, and why his new album is dedicated to his fans.

    Black photographed Brown at Opera Gallery in Soho, New York City. Two of Brown's favorite street artists, Ron English and Mr. Brainwash, are currently showing in the gallery. Black captured Brown in front of his favorite pieces including, "The Resuscitation of Immortality," a colorful painting of Casper the friendly ghost by English, seen above. Black found Brown to be very professional and focused and was "very impressed with how self-aware he was and with his knowledge of the new "downtown" art scene."

    The March 10th issue of Page Six Magazine is on newsstands now.

    See more of Kareem Black's photography here.

    Publication: Page Six Magazine
    Story: "The Redemption of Chris Brown"
    Photo Director: Antonella D'Agostino
    Fashion Director: Emma Pritchard
    Photographer: Kareem Black
    Stylist: David Thomas

  • 2.11.11

    Kareem Black Photographs M&Ms for Valentine's Day

    This Valentine's Day M&Ms is giving customers the chance to personalize the candy for their loved ones. Customers can have special messages written or photographs imprinted on a candy piece. Kareem Black photographed a life-like M&M to promote the special. The candy appears reclining on a table with an example of a personalized message written across its back.

    The shoot was the first time Black has worked with a CGI agency. Black shot a model M&M on the table to get the lighting and perspective right. The M&M that appears in the ad was added later using CGI. Instead of creating a humorous setting around the M&M, the ad allows the M&M to bring the humor on its own. The romantic and intimate setting for the shoot was an affluent home in suburban New Jersey.

    Client: M&Ms
    Agency: BBDO
    Photography: Kareem Black
    Art Buyer: Kathy Lando
    Art Buyer: Betsey Jablow

  • 1.19.11

    Kareem Black in Karin + Raoul's Winter Issue

    Karin + Raoul, an online magazine and gallery, explores the subject of addiction in their Winter '10-'11 issue. Kareem Black photographed a spread for the magazine and provided an in-depth interview as well. Black's images are an expansion on work he showed in September 2010 entitled "Exhibit B." Inspired by Guy Bourdin's provocative "Exhibit A", Black's interpretation explores his own long-held "addiction" - legs. The cropped images feature headless legs in what Black calls "questionable situations that leave a lot of question marks."

    In the accompanying interview Black discusses not only his work as a photographer, but also how he's been able to marry a strong sense of business to his art. Calling himself a student of Warholian philosophy, Black believes that being a good artist and being a good businessman must co-exist. He brings attention to his work through social media strategies like Twitter, Tumblr, and a sticker campaign.

    See more of Black's work here.

    Publication- Karin + Raoul
    Photographer- Kareem Black
    Art Director- Hassan Kinley
    Fashion Stylist - Harold Jay Melvin
    Assistant - Kim Lasser

  • 12.6.10

    Kareem Black Photographs Amanda Lepore for VIXEN

    Amanda Lepore graces the latest cover of the Norwegian magazine VIXEN. Kareem Black photographed the transsexual model and fashion icon in a sci-fi themed shoot at Root studio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NYC. Although Lepore can seem larger than life, Black found her "breathtakingly humble, quiet and down to earth".

    Inside the article Lepore describes herself as a self-made women in the same league as Lady Gaga, Dita von Teese, and Marilyn Monroe. She discusses how plastic surgery not only keeps her looking youthful, but feminine as well. Lepore is seen styled as an ice queen with white hair in fetish-inspired latex leggings, tight corsets, and custom harnesses.

    Photographing Lepore has been a long-held dream of Black's. His intent was to show her as she'd never been seen before. Instead of overplaying the synthetic elements to her beauty, Black focuses on showing her as more serious, almost cold. Black says, "This was a dream shoot for me. I had literally seen it in my dreams for years and it turned out just the way I had foreseen, only better."

    See more of Kareem Black's work here.

    Publication: VIXEN
    Story: Gaga Who?
    Photographer - Kareem Black
    Art Director - Sophy Holland
    Model - Amanda Lepore
    Fashion Stylist - Harold Jay Melvin
    Hair - Elsa for Elnett
    Makeup - Roshar for Make Up For Ever
    Nails - Naomi
    Set Design - Brian Byrne
    Fashion Assistant - Prince Franco
    Retoucher - Jason Leiva

  • 8.24.10

    Kareem Black - Your Rules, Your Republic

    Republic, a retail brand based in the United Kingdom, debuts its first above-the-line campaign for fall/winter 2010. The chain currently has 100 stores across the United Kingdom and Ireland with plans to more than double its stores in the next five years. Ad agency Propaganda drives Republic into the forefront of its audience, the free-spirited 16-24 year olds, with a print and digital campaign that uses various social media channels. The "YOUR RULES YOUR REPUBLIC" campaign features lithe, young party-goers with shiny hair and glowing skin shimmying through the night.

    Who better to capture the campaign's carefree attitude than Kareem Black? His New York nightlife chronicles can be seen on his website /life. For the Republic campaign, he turned his attention to the London scene. Says Black, "I wanted the Republic campaign to look like the characters were having the time of their lives." Models clad in the latest Republic looks danced all day and night to music picks by Black, listening to music by Girl Talk and Lord Easy and mixes by DJs Valissa Yoe, Atrak, and The Rub.

    Behind the Scenes Video

    Client: Republic
    Agency: Propaganda
    Creative Director: Mark Williams
    Art Director: Ben Bateson
    Photographer: Kareem Black
    Production: Pure Creative Management
  • 7.16.10

    Kareem Black Lives Life with New York Magazine

    For the past few months Kareem Black has been documenting his nightlife escapades with a special section on his website entitled /LIFE. Whereas his commercial work is what he shoots during the day, /LIFE is Kareem Black uncut and unbridled in the evening - dirty Chinatown toilets, flowing Champagne in dingy dive bars, and girls riding inflatable fish balloons.

    When New York Magazine approached Black to photograph a story on the hotel nightlife scene in New York, the extension of his /LIFE project in a new environment was only natural. Jackie Ladner of New York Magazine explains, "I could see from the free style of Kareem's 'Life' section on his site that he had a positive spirit and a strength. Though this shoot was a slight challenge (July 4th weekend and the hottest day), his way with people made him perfect for an assignment that required him to step into a room, capture people unguarded having a great time as if they all knew each other, and with an amazing eye for details, found moments that were so familiar yet still alluring."

    Black toured The Standard, Hotel Gansevoort, The Bowery Hotel, Gramercy Park Hotel, and Ace Hotel for the story "Checkout Time is 4A.M.". Says Jonathan Van Meter in New York Magazine, "After decades of irrelevancy-the last place on Earth most New Yorkers would go to be at the center of it all-hotels have become, for better or worse, a cultural force in the city again."

    Whether it be rooftop bar, a lounge on the 18th floor, or a lobby, hotel impresarios Andr'e Balazs, Ian Schrager, Michael Achenbaum, and partners Eric Goode and Sean MacPherson have crafted a nightlife market that calls to New Yorkers with their stylish design and sense of escapism. However, the saturation of boutique hotels is in danger of putting themselves out of business. Comments Schrager to Van Meter, "The risk is that these unique hotels that we did become the rule rather than the exception."

    Kareem Black: /LIFE

    Trends come and go but Kareem Black will always be there to capture the scene. Notes Black, "Life happens. I always have my camera ready so as not to miss it, or let it pass me by as it were. I find myself asking to hang out with and document total strangers. The project is endless because at the end of the day its a document of my life. /Life is how I have fun now and I never want to forget this time."

    -Helen Shih

    Read the full story at New York Magazine
    View more work by Kareem Black

  • 5.24.10

    Heart Art for Haiti Art Auction

    Heart Art Productions holds an art auction to raise funds for Haiti earthquake relief efforts. All proceeds benefit Doctors Without Borders/M'edecins Sans Fronti`eres. Artwork from Tatiana Arocha, Kareem Black, Tristan Eaton, Yuko Shimizu, Michael Turek, Stephen Wilkes, and more are up for auction. Begin your bidding here. Auction closes June 17th at 11:59pm.

    Pictured above: Kareem Black: Untitled and Untitled
    Learn more about Kareem Black's time in Haiti.

    Michael Turek: Yorkshire

    Stephen Wilkes: Horse in Meadow

    L: Tristan Eaton x Filth: Untitled
    R: Yuko Shimizu: Untitled

    Tatiana Arocha: Red Yellow Sun
  • 3.17.10

    Kareem Black Returns from Haiti

    Kareem Black was in Haiti March 5th - 11th, 2010 with six other creatives from New York City on behalf of Healing Haiti and Print for Change. Their trip was made possible thanks to a generous donation from BBDO. The group calls themselves "The Sept," or "The Seven," and consists of photographers Wyatt Gallery and Alessandro Simonetti, writer Adam Reeves, writer and director Eugene Fuller, and illustrator and EVP of DesignWorks at BBDO, Craig Duffney.

    The group visited orphanages, helped deliver water, and documented their time in Haiti - taking photos, shooting video, and talking to locals. Black was candid about life in Haiti, stating, "There's no garbage disposal, no local police force or army, they burn garbage and bodies, there's sewage in the streets, pigs eating the sewage, and children playing with the pigs."

    In the midst of volunteering, Black and the others quickly became aware that there was no easy nor permanent solution to the current situation in Haiti. Without money or passports, it is difficult to leave the stricken island. The lack of infrastructure exacerbates problems and housing solutions are still meager as many people camp out in tents.

    And yet, "I don't want to record death and destruction - everybody knows that story," says Black. Instead, Black chose to focus on the people, especially children, because "[they] are the hope and future of the nation." He furthers, "I want to give the culture some sort of dignity."

    In Black's photos and videos taken by the group, one can see that people are still able to smile and dance and enjoy themselves. In a small nation that has born the brunt of a natural disaster, there is still beauty and joy to be held. Children, especially, reacted energetically to Black's camera, overjoyed at seeing their image displayed on the screen of his digital camera.

    The group aims to take all of their footage, photos, and experiences and assemble a book and/or show with all proceeds going to charity. They want to tell their story and inspire others to give back to Haiti, whether that's writing a check, volunteering, or donating tools for growth and learning such as cameras and personal computers. Reflects Black, "It's very easy to lose hope - I almost did, but this is our way of helping Haiti one day at a time."

    -Helen Shih

  • 1.7.10

    Kareem Black Captures "The Scent of Seduction" for Burger King

    The Communication Arts 50th anniversary Advertising Annual is out! Juror Paul Little, Creative Director at TBWA/Vancouver, said "...the most innovative work is in the online and integrated categories." One of the big winners in the integrated categories is Crispin Porter + Bogusky's "The Flame" body-spray campaign for Burger King. The campaign was accompanied by wild postings, online banners, live TV commercials and an online and mobile tool at firemeetsdesire.com, a site designed to help you get your game on once you got your "flame on."

    B&A is proud to announce that Kareem Black has recently joined the agency. New artist Kareem Black shot the print component of CP+B's Burger King campaign, capturing Burger King's spokesperson "The King" in various alluring tableaus where he beckons the viewer to experience "The Flame" body spray scent. With a hint of flame broiled meat, the scent is sure to drive some people to the point of salivation.

    During the initial creative talks with CP+B, Black was incredulous about the entire concept. "They asked me to shoot an ad for a beef-scented body spray, I figured that they were just joking around," says Black. Putting his disbelief aside, Black flew out to Boulder, Colorado to shoot "The King." Since this was the debut of "The King's" bare chest, a special casting was done in order to find a model with the right mixture of chest hair and muscles. Explains Black, "We were trying to design the scene like the Burt Reynolds Playgirl spread from the 70's. The story was that this was The King's love den and he was inviting the viewer to come-hither."

    The image of The King scantily strewn along a bearskin rug against a warm fire in a rustic cabin was posted all over cities at the beginning of 2009. Black followed up the advertisement with an image that further boosted The King's virile image. This time, Black shot on location in the honeymoon suite of a couple's resort in the Poconos, NY. The King sits in a heart-shaped tub with lit candles and rose petal accents. The second advertisement debuted in time for Valentine's Day.

    The absurdity of the situation stayed with Black until he saw the final advertisements running. "Why is the Burger King mascot selling body spray? For the same reason he's playing football," said Black, referring to another of Crispin's subversive ads for Burger King where The King nonchalantly runs down the football field. "Crispin's Burger King ads are hilarious, innovative, strange, scary, and unique... they leave you with a question mark, but you always remember them."

    -Helen Shih


    Bernstein & Andriulli is excited to welcome Kareem Black to the agency, check back for more news about Kareem! View more of his work here.

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