Audacious is probably the best word to describe the work of up and coming freelance photographer, Nikki Zakkas. Having recently finished a year studying photography at Vega, and armed with a degree in fashion from LISOF, Nikki decided to pursue fashion photography; not only as a way to combine her two studied interests, but also as a means for exploring local urban identity. Her photographs reflect style as it is seen on the streets of Johannesburg, drawing inspiration from local neighbourhoods and subcultures.
Nikki’s models do more than just showcase clothes; their distinctive styles and personalities form a large part of her photography’s allure. Shot mostly in Joburg CBD, the images convey a sense of rawness and the dynamism of city life. A lot of her fashion photography portfolio was shot for Unlabelled Magazine and styled by the site’s editor, Phendu Kuta. As a team their output mirrors the aim of the fashion publication to showcase South African youth culture.
From an early age, Nikki tells us she was obsessed with fashion imagery, collecting magazines and envisioning her career in the industry. Her plan was always to be involved in image creation, whether as a stylist, photographer or eventual fashion editor or art director. When asked about her passion, Nikki says, “Fashion as a language is what inspires me; the visual elements of clothing and how they can make a statement about the wearer or a brand”. She enjoys the creativity fashion photography allows, especially in terms of post-production, and that one is constantly challenged to learn and develop in the medium. In terms of style, Nikki says she is still experimenting. The same can be said for her subject matter which may expand into nude portraiture and fine art photography.
Follow along at nikkizakkas.tumblr.com.