What better way to start the year than to shed light on black creatives? At only 23 years old, Terrance B is making his way on a list of the best photographers in Chicago. TB is self-taught and is determined to combine his creativity with his eye for success in the media industry. Photography is just one part of Terrance B’s ability to tell a story through his work of arts. In high school, he enrolled in a Career and Technical Education Course called Television Broadcasting where TB excelled in media production. From there, he took his talents to Western Illinois University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in 2019. I was able to talk to Terrance B about his plans for this year and the meanings behind his art.

Give us a little insight on your works of art. What made you want to become a photographer? Are you involved in any other aspect of media?

Photography did not cross my mind until my last year of college. I knew, that after graduating, I would be returning home to my family. In Chicago, obtaining a media-related job as an “entry level” college grad is challenging.  I like to create, produce, and direct. I knew I needed an outlet to preoccupy my passion, so I bought a camera and lens. I worked as a tourist photographer at the Willis Tower Skydeck in the meantime. That job helped expand my creativity and put me on course to explore street photography. Honestly, it’s street-nature-landscape-architectural photography. But my interests are still much broader. 

“Reaching for The Sky”

What do you hope to accomplish with your photography? What messages are you trying to send and how are you incorporating them in your photos?

What I am continuing to I accomplish through my use of photography is exploration. I use Street photography to take control of my camera and explore the big City around me. I pack my camera bag, park my car, and walk about downtown scouting for angles. I hope my photos can assert some sort of professionalism being that my composition skills are mostly based on internet research and practice.  I made a list of 60+ locations and addresses around Chicago that can probably promise a nice capture. I use this list every time I shoot. Whenever I learn something new or buy new equipment, I add it to the list and I try to utilize in my very next shoot. It’s how I keep my creativity recirculating like blood. Though, most of all, I’d hope that my photo art can be taken seriously. This is why most of my work goes into preproduction. 

“Chicago henge 2020”

What motivates you to keep going? Where do you see yourself/your photography in five years? Any plans for this year?

More experience or practice behind your camera gives you access to the different aspects of photography. I am motivated by my photo community. My friends and followers on social media are supportive. I get advice from professionals who don’t even know me sometimes, but they are willing to help, share, and teach. At times, it can be distracting. My own website motivates me to separate myself from the pressure of social media and stay true to my own brand. In five years, if photography is still at the forefront of my career, I’d hope to have a studio, a better-established website or portfolio, and an online market. This year I plan to take more portraits, sell my first prints, and continue to go out in the field as much as possible. 

“Welcome to the CHI”

For more information about Terrance B, visit his website.


All images courtesy of TCGB Media