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Shooting hip hop
Kim Malkowski documents local artists in exhibit

Kim Malkowski is a full-time student at the Savannah College of Art and Design and a part-time photographer from Chicago. She enjoys reading (especially comic books) and cooking in her spare time, and is a “big nutrition fanatic.”

She’s vegan and works at Brighter Day Natural Foods. She has a great passion for music, particularly hip hop, and most of her photography is centered on capturing the spirit of the music she loves.

Malkowski hosts a free upcoming gallery show called “Urbanity,” running March 16-27 at the Dimension Gallery on MLK Jr. Boulevard, which will feature several of her pieces.

We spoke to Kim last week about the upcoming show.

Did you always want to be a photographer?

Kim Malkowsi: No. I always knew I wanted to be an artist, but I actually came to SCAD for sequential art. I became interested in photography through the classes I took at SCAD. I have now been photographing for three years, and I will graduate from SCAD in the spring.

What about music inspires your work?

Kim Malkowsi: I’m impressed by the feelings and emotions in music, how musicians can put them out through sound and words, just take everything inside and pull it out. So much about music inspires me.

Who are the three bands that you usually photograph?

Kim Malkowsi: Dinko’s Bones (an experimental/hip hop band), Dope Sandwich Productions (a combination of indie, hip hop, and freestyle), and Street Circus Symphony (a mixture of freestyle, psychedelic, and roots music). They’re local bands in Savannah.

What is your favorite thing about photography?

Kim Malkowsi: Knowing when to snap the shutter to capture the essence of the moment.

Do you have a favorite piece?

Kim Malkowsi: It’s like choosing between your children! (laughs) I really like the pieces I did of the break dancers. It’s difficult to capture the rhythm, movement, and flow of them without making them look weird. I finally got a technique down that I’m happy with.

What kind of work can we expect to see in the upcoming gallery exhibit?

Kim Malkowsi: It’s mostly all parts of hip hop... Graffiti, djs, as well as portraiture and documentary pieces. It’s got a lot of color and a lot of heart.

What are your future goals?

Kim Malkowsi: I would like to go into editorial work. I’m thinking about moving to San Francisco and working for a hip hop magazine.

Do you have any advice for aspiring photographers?

Kim Malkowsi: Keep shooting, all of the time. Shoot what you love, shoot what you love doing in your regular life. You will love what you do more.