EXCLUSIVE: Our Interview with Blaine Ka'akimaka

Photos courtesy of Blaine Ka'akimaka We speak to photographer Blaine Ka'akimaka Honolulu, Hawaii this week.

Photos courtesy of Blaine Ka'akimaka

We speak to photographer Blaine Ka'akimaka Honolulu, Hawaii this week.

Hi Blaine! Tell us a bit about yourself.
Well to start off simply, I'm a photographer who was born and raised in paradise Honolulu, Hawaii. I am currently 20 years old, and I think I have the creativity of Warhol, but the tenacity of a Hoodrat. It's hard to describe yourself without sounding like your completely full of yourself. But I'll try. I'm great and beautiful and I never make mistakes. Obviously not kidding.

I grew up loving the island I was raised in, but learned at a pretty young age that this really isn't the place for me. It'll always be home, but I need a change. One can only see so many palm trees before absolutely despising them. I always knew from my style to my hobbies that I was just different, which I always loved. Still to this day, it's never anything that I wanna take for granted. The dreams and expectations that I have for myself molded me into who I am today, which I can finally say I absolutely love. And my photography gave me that platform. I'm a photographer till the day I die, and nothing will ever change that.

When did you discover a passion for photography?
My passion for photography didn't ever really turn into a serious one until about my freshman year of high school. I've always had a big fascination with images, images of all sorts. I have a photographic memory, so every amount of thought that goes through my brain is created with images. To put it simply, I was one of those kids who would skim through a book and think "what the hell?" if it didn't have pictures in it. In the trash you go. I've always been taking photos, since I could remember. The entire process of capturing a moment in time, and keeping that always blew my mind. So from that idea, it expanded. It turned into something different for me. Instead of capturing moments frozen in time, I could create my own moments. Make each photo a little window into the world that I see. I had control, a full grip on this steering wheel that I could take anywhere that I wanted to. I guess what you could say is, I found my freedom. Photography to me, is so much more than a job or a title of occupation. It's a vessel granted to me, that allows me to be whoever I want to be, create whatever I want to create. And to me, that is the greatest concept alive. So when it actually comes down to it, photography isn't just a passion for me, it's my entire life. It is me. We are completely one. Boom.

Where do you get your ideas and inspirations from?
Wow. That's pretty hard to narrow down. I think that's where my strength lies in my art, I feel lucky enough to say that I find my inspirations in everything. Almost to a strange point to be honest, which didn't really hit me till one day I was in a grocery store, with my eyes completely glazed over staring at this 20 pack of drinking straws... yup, I said drinking straws. I immediately thought of all these different ideas I could use to incorporate these straws into a shoot. Then I woke up from this random day-dream in aisle 7, and realized.. wow, that was weird. But to be honest, I wouldn't have it any other way. It's such a blessing to be able to grab pieces of inspiration from everyday things, simple things. As well as not so simple things, I love grabbing moods and vibes from the style, music, and culture from decades past and utilizing them in modern day settings. Another big inspiration in my work, is duality. The concept of opposites combined is something that I notice in my work, without even purposefully trying to do it. I guess it's just in me somewhere. So I feel that inspiration, is such a wide and unwavering concept that I could go on for pages. So I'll just save that for my tell-all book in thirty years.

What do you have to tell from your photos?
The message that I am trying to portray through my photos, definitely vary throughout each photo, from each shoot. But I will say, that my photos in their entirety are trying to represent a dream. My entire life is based on my dreams, their my everything and so are my photos. I want my photos to say less of a direct message and give you more of just a feeling. I want you to feel each photo, and come up with your own interpretation. I would absolutely hate to have to rip apart every fiber and seam of my photos to explain to you what it means, I want you to feel it. It's like being a comedian, if you have to explain your joke.. it's probably not a good joke. My photos are for everyone. I want you to look forward to seeing my photos because they make you feel good, because it puts you in a place where you feel safe, where you feel like anything is possible. And YOUR dreams are in the forefront. I would rather you to not look at me, and how beautiful my dreams are, but to re-discover yours. Your passions and your dreams, are such a terrible thing to waste. We all have those crazy, un-realistic things that we wish we had the strength to do, or even become. And to deny that, is denying yourself. Which is the biggest human injustice, if you ask me. And, I'd hope that, that is what my photos are going to be telling you.

What is your favourite equipment to work with?
To be honest, my favorite "equipment" to work with, wouldn't really be classified as equipment. It's working with someone who is absolutely, and undeniably fearless. For me, to work with a model who has absolutely no inhibitions when it comes to the art is all that could ever ask for. Someone who isn't afraid of looking weird, or looking dumb, or who isn't afraid of not looking "pretty". I need a model who's completely down for anything, for the good of the shot. To be able to have the trust, that I have their back makes everything flow like music. It truly is the most artistic part of the entire process. The creation. I need a down-ass b*tch.

If you could only work with one colour, which one would it be and why?
That just might be the hardest thing I've ever had to answer. I don't think I would be able to do that. Colours work in such a fluid way with each other, I need them all. Colours play such a big part in my photos, they have one of the biggest parts in setting the mood. I base almost all of my shoots around the colours in them. If I can't have them all, I won't have any at all!

To be honest, I would probably just shoot black & whites.
But that's not even one colour. I quit.

Where is the one place on Earth you'd love to visit?
There are so many places that I would love to visit, and I notice that it always differs from time to time. So at this point in time I will say, I would love to visit Egypt. I recently stumbled upon my Grandma's old travel photos, and she had photos from Paris, Italy, Sydney, San Francisco, Tokyo, and Egypt. And once I saw the geometric dreams that are the Egyptian pyramids, I fell in love. The valleys and valleys of sand are so beautiful it's almost like you're in a completely different universe. It's absolutely mind-blowing, and if I ever got the opportunity to go there, I'd probably seizure out before even getting there.

What would you do if you win a million dollars?
That's pretty hard to say, to be completely honest.. I don't think I would do anything with it, I would completely save it because I would be too afraid of losing it. But come ask me again once we start talking two million dollars. $$$

Blaine Ka'akimaka's official site
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