Under Cover Artist: Curtis Powell

Interview: LeftLion
Thursday 04 November 2021
reading time: min, words

He’s been at LeftLion for bloody ages, but our Jason Williamson cover is Curtis Powell’s first. We chat to our Head of Photography and Video about how he approached it...


Tell us a bit about yourself…
I’m Curtis, the Head of Photography and Video at LeftLion. I’ve worked here for four (glorious) years. I’m also a DJ and music producer who goes by the name LVNDLXRD.

What was the inspiration behind the cover? 
I just wanted to capture Jason from Sleaford Mods in a natural setting. It's the first time I’ve done a LeftLion cover so I wanted to make it as striking as possible. Jason is famed for his expressions in photos and video throughout his career so I thought capturing that would be most relatable to anyone that knows his style and personality.

I love taking photos and filming local artists and talented people, being from Nottingham myself it always feels so rewarding and, of course, looks great for the portfolio.

How does it compare with some other projects you’ve worked on?
It’s quite different taking a picture for a magazine cover compared to just shooting a series of video clips and editing them in post. I generally take photos for the mag on a weekly basis, however there's quite a few things to think about for this kind of shoot: leaving headroom above the artist to fit the title in, lighting and focal point. 

What was the biggest challenge that you faced in creating the piece?
I really wanted to use the outdoor shots in the drizzle as I thought that would capture the mood a little better. With Jason coming from a working class Nottingham background, a bit of British rain always looks good when trying to capture emotions, innit?

Tell us about some projects you’ve worked on in the past…
We’ve recently done a couple of video pieces for the Rebel City series that is currently being shown in Nottingham Castle. In this job I’ve had the chance to meet some amazing people, famous and not famous. The interview I directed with the musical Kanneh-Mason family was really special as we got a deep look into their upbringing and what motivates them to be great musicians. Also the interview with paralympian Richard Whitehead was really inspiring as he proves that you can really do anything you put your mind to, not just your body.

What have you got planned for the future?
As well as working for LeftLion, I currently run my own freelance animation and video service called Loud Planet. We’ve worked on videos for local artists such as Bru-C, Snowy, Vandull, Smedz, Jimmy Rocket just to name a few. We specialise in full-length music videos and animation for social media and advertisements. The plan is to keep hammering away and provide great content to whoever needs it.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell the LeftLion readers?
Check out my Loud Planet and music accounts and look out for me on a DJ lineup near you soon!


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