You may not know what photographer Erik Carter looks like, but you definitely know what his work looks like. Nia Long for The Hollywood Reporter, Jeremy Pope, Samuel L. Jackson, and Ava DuVernary for The New York Times, Iman for The Washington Post, Sheryl Lee Ralph for The Cut, Jordan Peele and Keke Palmer for GQ, Jerrod Carmichael for Rolling Stone, the cast of Bel-Air for Teen Vogue, and Daniel Kaluuya for Essence are a few of his highlights from 2022.

The LA based photographer’s work is literally everywhere. His images are intimate, beautifully lit, and cinematic — they have an ethereal, dreamlike quality about them. You can’t unsee them. With a background in theater, this self-taught photographer creates imagery of Black and Brown people which reimagines a visual narrative and gaze that is soft, joyful, and at peace with themselves and the world. Carter has been quoted as saying that his work is created to “explore, uplift and exhibit Black and queer life.” His vision quest is working and creating a renewed photographic legacy for the culture. —E.W.

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