[Interview] Photographer Of The Month: Toronto’s Drew Yorke Loves Taking Photos & More

These days Toronto is the new hot topic for many of your favorite magazines. On one end they have a handful of young artists that are breaking into the American music scene and then they have these new generation creative heads and taste-makers that are setting new standards for many. Among those meet Drew Yorke, a young talented photographer that has viewed the world through his lens for a minute now and is ready to share his side of the story as a versatile photographer and what are his next big plans.

RESPECT: Your portfolio is very impressive. How long have you been taking photos for?
Drew Yorke: I’ve always been interested in photography and how cameras work, but I only began to take it seriously when I started doing music photography about a year ago. I haven’t been in the game for very long but I think my portfolio speaks for my hustle. It began as a way to see my favourite artists for free but it quickly turned into a way for me to work with musicians and tell their stories.

What was your best and worse photoshoot experience?
DY: It’s hard to choose one because I’m constantly photographing new artists and hearing new sounds but photographing Drake and Future at Ryerson University in the rain was definitely memorable. There was just a certain energy at that show and in the city at that time. Worst experience was losing all my photos on the last show of Mac Miller’s GO:OD AM tour – but that’s a long story.

What are some of your influences?
DY: Music has always spoken to me much clearer than just words. I feel really privileged to be able to photograph and work with musicians that inspire me. Instagram is probably my biggest influence because being able to connect with every other hip hop photographer on the planet is always making me feel like an amateur. That’s what keeps me working.

Is photography your first passion?
DY: I grew up in a house of musicians so I’ve always been passionate about music. My parents were heavily involved in the local music community so I spent a lot of my childhood in concert halls and theatres. I always played in school bands but eventually I traded that for house parties and drinking. Photography was just something I stumbled upon that connected me back to that part of my life.


Your first photo taking experience ever?
DY: Living in Toronto and being a fan of hip hop can be pretty hard on the wallet. I was broke and really wanted to see Fashawn perform here in Toronto so I emailed every promoter and manager I could find and lied about working for a magazine. I borrowed a camera from my school and walked into the show like I belonged there. I met Fashawn at the bar before he went on stage and that’s when I became addicted. That show got me into my next show and I haven’t turned back since.

How does it feel to view the world through the camera lens?
DY: It’s cool to be able to share my experiences with other people via my camera. I’m always trying to capture energy and personality so people can see what I see. Viewing the world through my lens at sold out all-ages shows can be painful but that’s why I do it. I do it for all people who pass out in hot sweaty concert halls – and for the occasional cheque.

5 goals for 2016:
DY: OVO Fest