Life through a lens: Camilo Rios White

We talk to the Miami-based creative whose work embodies our new Atlantic Beach edit

Life through a lens: Camilo Rios White

Camilo Rios White is a man comfortable with glamour. It is threaded through all his work. Bright skies, beautiful locations, colours that pop, these are the marks of the 37-year-old photographer and creative director’s images. Over the past 11 years, his singular style has seen him work with everyone from Off White to Stella McCartney; L’Officiel Paris to Grazia magazine.

Although born in Columbia and raised in Fort Worth, Texas, his work has become synonymous with the beautiful sandy beaches of Miami, which he calls his “paradise”. He was, then, the perfect person to shoot the social media campaign for our latest edit, Atlantic Beach, our tribute to those days spent with a cold drink and good friends by the sea. In the edit you will find lots of bright colours and no-fuss detailing, which makes it perfect for a relaxing day of sun and sand.

To mark the launch and celebrate our latest collaboration, we asked Rios White to talk us through 5 images which are important to him and his work. Scroll down to see Rios White’s life through a lens.

Orlebar Brown Beach Shoot

“We chose the location not just because they were on the Atlantic but because of what they represent. Fashion history was made in Miami and everyone used to work here – from Bruce Weber through to Helmut Newton. They all wanted to shoot on South Beach. Photography allows me to go back in time. There’s this strong 1990s visual history to the place that I like to access in my own work. I really think the most colourful beaches in the world are here in Miami. I love it - even though time and tourism has changed it.”

Camilo on location with Julian Rios & Aygemang Clay
South Beach

“I moved back to Miami from New York City because I didn’t like to be restricted by concrete and buildings. I love surfing and everything to do with the water much more. The ocean means everything to me – it is my food. I’m a sea person, without doubt. This image shows you why I like it so much. One thing that never changes is the ocean.”

© Camilo Rios White
Man with fighter jet

“I always love to incorporate scenarios into my work where the unthinkable happens, where the impossible becomes possible – which you can see from this picture with the jet. Also I always take pictures of signs during my road trips and I like to incorporate them into my photos, to layer them on top of one another. I love to play with information in my images, to tell a story – whether it’s fantasy or not – and incorporating a comment about human behaviour. The unexpected is important to me. I mean, you wouldn’t imagine a weapons test on Miami Beach.”

© Camilo Rios White
Woman in car

“I collect photography books. I have first editions of my greatest influences – Helmut Newton, Chris Vaughn, they did ridiculous things that nobody expected. In a way I’m trying to keep that spirit alive. Also what is really important to me is empowering women. For instance, here I think high heels are a statement of power, especially when put with this quite rare pink supercar. It’s transformative. I’ll tell you something, though, I was quite nervous making this image as I didn’t want to scratch a car worth $3 million. I am always looking at the model thinking, I hope her high heels don’t dent the paintwork. But still I love it; I found myself getting bored when I was just doing standard fashion shoots all the time – as a photographer you have to find your style, just like any artist has to find their style. The cars have become part of my style.”

© Camilo Rios White
Woman with fan

“I like to think of my images as if they are going to be posters – that people will want to take them home and put them on their walls. Here what I am doing is playing with sarcasm. I like to play with scenarios and compositions like that. I think it works.”

© Camilo Rios White