Myles Loftin is a twenty-year-old freelance photographer whose vibrant colorful work spans from portraiture to fashion photography while exploring themes such as the black experience, identity, and representation of marginalized individuals. Myles recognizes the power that images hold in our society and seeks to use that power for positive change. Art is an important part of his life and, as an artist of color, he works to inspire other artists of color to pursue successful careers in the creative industry.

DRECK: Since this is the Beautiful issue, and you seem to have photographed so many different beautiful people, what would you say makes someone beautiful to you?

Myles: would say that individuality and confidence are two things I find beautiful and I see those things in all the people that I photograph. 

DRECK: Do you think that there are certain qualities that can make someone”ugly” or “unattractive” to you?

Myles: Having a negative personality is pretty much the main way for you to be unattractive to me. 

DRECK: Who is the most beautiful creature in the world? And why?

Myles: I wouldn’t say that there’s one particular thing that’s the most beautiful. I think that there’s beauty to be found in most things and its not something you can really rank. 

DRECK: How and when did you know you have to take pictures? Has your work changed over the years or has it?

Myles: I started taking pictures when I was in middle school because I was really into tumblr and fashion photography at the time, and I had a cousin who was getting into photography. I remember being so fascinated scrolling through tumblr fashion blogs back in 2011 [when I first started using the app], and thinking that I wanted to create images that made people feel the same way I felt looking at old i-D spreads or Urban Outfitters ads. My initial approach to photography was more concerned with just making pretty pictures; I wasn’t as focused on the concept behind my work or what it was saying. Towards the end of High School I began to think more deeply about my work, and what I could use it to say. Now I have a much better idea of what I want to do and say as a photographer. 

DRECK:   What are your experiences regarding representation of queer people of color in the past few years?

Myles: There has been a growing number of queer POC represented in mainstream media, but that number is still small. And even within the representation that we get our stories are often mistold or censored. 

DRECK: You and your work appear to be one. How much does your daily life shape your work and ideas?

Myles: A lot of my daily life shapes the work that I do. My work is very personal to me, and it is formed by everything from what I’m seeing on the internet, who I’m talking to, to who I see on the street. 

DRECK: What are you working on at the moment? What is your ultimate dream project?

Myles: Right now I’m working on a personal project that focuses on using photography as a safe space but also as a means for representation for queer people. As far as dream projects, I have too many!