STYLE & BEAUTY
01/18/2012 09:14 am ET Updated Oct 11, 2012

Damon Baker, 20-Year-Old Fashion Photographer, Talks Coffee, Cigarettes and Andrej Pejic

What were you doing when you were 20-years-old? Probably not shooting supermodels for top fashion magazines and campaigns, unless your name is Damon Baker that is.

The UK-native photographer first made a splash on the fashion scene in 2008 when he started working with modeling agencies and has since worked for such magazines as Bullett, Blackbook and InStyle. Baker, who currently lives in London, has worked with such up and coming models as Tali Lennox, Heather Marks, Jourdan Dunn and even our favorite, Andrej Pejic.

Where are you from?
I'm from the deepest darkest most fabulous part of my mind. This is where I began.

Since you started your career how has your personal style changed?
Style is very important to me. The best thing about waking up is dressing up. My style has never changed, just grew. I'll always be in head to toe black, platforms and sunnies, making a statement. I'm a little bit of a bad boy, and I don't really have any boundaries.

How did you first get started in photography?
There was never a point where I picked up a camera and thought I would have a career as a photographer. It has always been natural for me to create and capture. I would always be that child at school who would rebel a little with school uniform, I enjoyed being different from everybody else. I remember dressing up with friends and capturing the moment, it was exciting for me to invent something so far from the truth, to capture elements of glamour, to create images and have them forever. Creating a photo is a very personal and intimate process, like sex.

How do you think your age factors into the way you are perceived?
I don't think age should be a factor at all when it comes to the industry, if people enjoy and feel your photos then that is all that matters. I haven't been on any other photo shoots apart from my own, so I can't say how another photographer works, but I can tell you that I work with an open mind. I never assisted and I never studied photography, everything just comes from my mind and that's where I stay most of the time, that's my reality.

What was the first big shoot that you did?
Honestly, I haven't been doing this very long at all so every shoot for me is 'big', I'm enjoying every single second, it's the most incredible experience and I find everyone I meet extremely interesting.

What’s the strangest location you have ever done a shoot at?
I'm always stranger than the locations!

What’s the most surprising thing you have seen on set?
No coffee!

How did you first meet Andrej Pejic?
Oh my, Andrej and I first met at a strip club in London. I was on the pole and he was my audience.

You have shot Pejic many times, what is it like to work together on set?
Andrej and I have been with each other from pretty much the beginning, I remember shooting him in a park for our first time. We combined our clothes and played dress up. We would put on clothes and explore London, watch trash TV and he would make me potato smilies. Being on set with him is magical, of course, he's everything I live for and I'm so proud of him. My girl is breaking boundaries!

How does he compare to working with female models?
I don't think it's about gender with Andrej and I don't think it should be about gender with anybody. We are who we are and we should be proud of that. The special thing about Andrej isn't his looks, but more about that he is confident with who he is.

Have you ever worked with someone who was a complete diva?
Yes, but I can't say who!

How did you handle it?
I fell in love! It's showbiz.

A lot of your photographs feature cigarettes, what is it about cigarettes that is appealing aesthetically?
Emotion and movement to me is extremely beautiful, I think the shapes, dimensions and movement in smoke is interesting. Smoking makes a still photo almost seem less static, it adds action and an element of realism. It's personal and natural.

Are you a smoker yourself?
My caffeine intake is more worrying.

What is your current inspiration?
I'm constantly being inspired, possibly every second. I will sit and drown in my own ideas. My own mind inspires me, it's constantly feeding my addiction, I believe I am a creation of my own mind. I don't reference others work. I enjoy approaching a photo shoot with a fresh mind, seeing everything in person and then creating that image, not just capturing it. I am involved in hair, makeup, styling, art direction, every little detail, this is crucial for me, I have to be a part of the entire package.

Where do you see yourself in five years?
I live for the moment, darling. The future is however we create it.

Take a peek in our gallery below for some of Baker's work:

PHOTO GALLERY
CONVERSATIONS