Since the start of Yeah Nah Yeah we have had a strong tie with Melvin Berzamina. He takes photos that show what is really going on at parties. He does it so well, by being apart of the fun. He isn’t the kind of photographer who asks you if you want a photo and gets a shot of you and your friends arm in arm smiling. That’s what your mums for. Melvin gets a photo of you and you don’t even know until you see it on your screen the next day. The shot of you and your mates dancing with your eyes closed, your arms in the air, smiles on your lips because you haven’t felt so good from the music you’re hearing in your life. The shot of two people hooking up while someone else is throwing up behind them. Real shots, of real people, doing real things. Andy caught up with Melvin ahead of Yeah Nah Yeah number five to get some insight into his style and what he’s about.
Why do you do photography?
Ever since I was a kid I’d enjoy documenting everything my friends and I would do, either through video or photos, making sure that the memories will never be lost. I guess the reasons for doing photography today still stands consistent to the reason I had when I was younger.
You have a really good mix of travel, event and everyday shots which really highlight that. What exactly would you say your style is? Do you hope to see this style heading in any particular direction in the future?
I am a pretty messy photographer. I wouldn’t say my photos are traditionally beautiful but I would like to say my style would be more into the documentary/street photography category.
I would really like to stick with a documentary photography style in the future, improving with techniques. In order to continue pursuing that doco style I’ll have to wait till I finish my uni degree. As soon as I finish I want to get some cash and travel so I’ll have more interesting content to shoot.
What is your favourite thing to shoot?
There are a lot of things that I like to shoot and I couldn’t just pick one. I love taking photos of my friends getting smashed at parties and benders. I love how raw and authentic it can be. It may sound heaps lazy, but I really enjoy shooting anything that is memorable to me. Whether it be a specific moment or just something that pleases my eye.
What is your favourite Camera at the moment?
My favourite camera right now is the one I’m using now. It’s the Yashica T3 35mm film camera. It’s a sweet point and shoot with a Carl Zeiss lens. That may mean shit to you but any camera with a Carl Zeiss lens is tasty.
If you could be invisible for one day. What would you shoot? And you can’t go for the sleazy girls change room option. Well you can if you want. Is that what you want Melvin? Naked girls unaware of you being there? Cause that’s creepy.
Funny that you ask me that question. I recently saw a photo series on Vice Magazine of a photographer shooting organised motel orgies in Manchester UK. And no, I’m offended that you thought I would be keen to creep in female change rooms.
If I were to be invisible for one day, I would like to take photos of gangs in ghettos like Compton or the favelas. Documenting their ‘day in life’ taking photos of them doing gangster shit like putting rubber bands around fat stacks of money, cutting up kilos of coke or doing drive bys . It would be pretty cool to document and present considering how taboo it is.
CATCH MELVIN AND HIS PHOTOS AT YEAH NAH YEAH #5 ON APRIL 8. TICKETS ARE SELLING FAST
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