Jamal Martin

My name is Jamal Martin, and I am a 24 year old documentary photographer/filmmaker based in Shreveport/Bossier City, Louisiana. I started shooting film and in the style of documenting when I came across the work of Andre Wagner. I had never seen this style of photography let alone a black man thriving while doing it. Instantly I was hooked and my journey began in the summer of 2020.

Old man talking with holding a cigarette

Freeze In the Frame

This set of images has to be one of my favourites from a roll. These images were shot on HP5+ with my Leica M6. Usually I'll go with the M6 and I almost always have a roll of ILFORD HP5+ rated to 800 for more flexibility out on the streets. The M6 just feels light and it's hard to be seen. I also prefer black and white because I love the emotion that it pulls from whatever I freeze in the frame.

Man sat down holding a cigarette

Mr. Anthony Pronnette

On the day of making these images, I was walking downtown when I overheard a voice ask to get their picture taken. Initially I was just looking for a moment to catch my attention and he sure did. His name was Mr. Anthony Pronnette. I remember his name and face so well. As I approached him, a conversation sparked about how he grew up back in the era of segregation and how being black/Italian but passing for a white made him a target on both ends of the spectrum.

Old man smiling with a cigarette in his mouth

The History He Carried

He began to talk more about his experiences, serving our country in such a difficult era, all while smoking cigarette, lighting them faster than I've ever seen. The more he talked, I was amazed at all of the things he went through and the history he carried. Stopping to talk with him and taking these images made his day even brighter than it was. With each photograph I love the details and you can see the history he carries in his eyes. I think it's important to capture stories like this because they only happen every so often and it's history in the making to me.

Old man smoking a cigarette

Captivated My Eye

I made sure to get portraits that embodied him as a person but also those details that captivated my eye. I'm hoping to get into the darkroom and make prints of these images soon. If I could gift him one, that would be ideal.

Man sat down crossed legged holding a cigarette