Kanye West - Unreleased Album Photography, 2016

While working in the studio for 2 years on Puff Daddy’s unreleased album No Way Out 2 I got an oppurtunity to document a rare Kanye West session. Everyday for a week or two Kanye came into the studio to work with puff but on this particular day puff was sick and didn’t come in. I asked Kanye if I could document him. He agreed but asked me to “just vibe” for the first hour or so, he wanted me to feel out the room. I really respected that request. Most artist I’d worked with either didnt care if you filmed them or they’d just want you to come in and perform like a robot. The way I filmed was always about feeling out the room, and understanding the energy. It was very important to know what conversations to have my camera off for, and which to make sure I didn’t miss. This session in particular Kanye was starting production for puff. Big Sean, Vic Mensa, Pusha T, Consequence, and Mike Dean all walked in. Big Sean was about to release his album Dark Sky Paradise and he wanted to play it for Kanye. Kanye listened to the entire album giving Sean pointers, advice and more. This was the first time I heard Play no Games with Big Sean and Ty Dolla Sign. This was the session Kanye recorded the blessings verse. He heard the song and asked Sean if he could jump on a verse. Sean said there are already 3 verses, and he wasn’t taking off any of his or drake’s verses. Kanye said “we bout to have 4 verses like mercy” He went in recorded the verse and that was it. I got an oppurtunity to watch and document most of the process. Kanye worked with a few producers who were in other rooms to aid in his process. He was very focused as he chopped samples and talked about the importance of the movie blackfish.