Back in November of 2017, he attended his first ever Chris Travis show and that night sparked a flame of inspiration for Zupreme. He had already been involved in photography for a while now and it was until a Ghostmane show in Dallas that he began shooting at shows. He recalls having to sneak in his camera at that show, as he was only in the show through general admission. Later on that December, he captured moments from a show headlined by Warhol.SS, Thouxanbanfauni and Uno the Activist. His images soon caught the eye of many of local artists in Dallas and they began reaching out to him. It was all a chain reaction for Zupreme and he was hungry for more.
He recalls the Rebirth show – featuring Pyrex Pirates and Emotional Xan – as the one that really popped things off for him. He went on to capture more moments at other shows for artists such as Joule$, Jay Thomas and SadFaceThuggin. Little by little, show to show, he began getting recognized and praised for his works. Within the past months, Zupreme has gotten to really exploit his talent and have the opportunity to shoot for out of state artists such as Yung Bans, idontknowjeffery, Big Baby Scumbag, Lil Tracy and the GothBoiClique. A crazy story he shared is how he came about to shoot for Yung Bans. Tommy Activity – Owner of Activity Clothing – called him at four in the morning and told him about the opportunity. He did not hesitate for a moment and went for it. The “1of1” rhinestone hoodie collection was later released and Zupreme was responsible for the shots.
As far as inspiration goes, he cites Gunner Stahl and Playboi Carti as his major influences. Carti was a gateway for him as he was introduced to the underground rap scene through him. During our interview, we discussed how all of the moments captured by Gunner will be legendary ten years from now as we look back at history. The same can be said for Zupreme ten years from now. The moments he has captured within the Dallas scene will be crazy memories as we look back. We mutually agreed that Dallas is in the cusp of something great and the hip-hop world will soon be turning heads on the city.
For those that have seen Zupreme’s photography before, one could see how distinct his shots are. Surprisingly he uses the simplest of methods possible when he’s shooting. To get his signature shot, he sets his camera to portrait mode, raises the flash and gets up close. Once they’re taken into the editing process, just a touch of brightness and a few other things get the job done. A big part that goes into the photos beforehand is having a genuine conversation with the artist. He describes his creative process as being as natural as possible. During a show, he likes to get shots of the crowd interaction with the performers. Nothing too complicated or staged, just going with the flow.
Many don’t know the story of how he got his name ZupremeTrash. Way before photography, he was a soccer superstar growing up. He played consistently up until high school, where things took a different turn. After breaking up with his girlfriend at the time, he went through a dark time in his life. It wasn’t until the end of his sophomore year that he went on to try new things. He made an attempt at becoming a rapper, uploading a freestyle over Future’s “Mask Off”. He had dubbed himself as Zupreme Z but in the comment section a girl reacted to him saying “more like zupreme trash”. He took the name and ran with it since then.
The process wasn’t easy for him, he remembers how no one would respond to him or even acknowledge him for his photos. Nowadays artists consistently reach out and show love to him. Zupreme will be everywhere this upcoming summer as he has been booked for multiple tours and many other shows/festivals in Dallas. He’s managing to do all of this and more, at only 17. To this day he is one of the youngest photographers around and there’s no sign of him slowing down.
Follow him on Twitter & Instagram: @ZupremeTrash
Written By Roland Rivera