Joshua Wilcoxon still gets the chills when he hits the shutter button on his camera.
Perhaps it’s because he sees everyday things in a different light. A light that is considerably darker than the rest.
“I’m not goth[ic] or anything,” laughed Wilcoxon about his dark fascinations.
Wilcoxon, primarily a wedding and senior photographer, definitely has two sides to his craft, which started during a photography class at Dakota State University. Though he went to school for graphic design, he carried out his passion for portraits privately.
His professor and mentor, Tom Jones, saw the talent and passion his former student had, and encouraged him incessantly to pursue it.
“He was a big part of my life, because he is the one who always pushed me when I almost quit or almost didn’t start a business,” said Wilcoxon.
Jones also pushed him to enter an annual contest with “Digital Photo Pro” called “The Face,” which he placed as a finalist out of over 26,000 entries with his photograph entitled “Snow.”
“Snow” stems from one of his “twisted” shoots (on the cover of this month’s 605), in which the character of Snow White is shown in a tormented and shrilling manner. Pieces of the all-mighty mirror consume her features, and the “creeping evil” is slowing engulfing her body.
This is Wilcoxon’s kind of fairytale.
“I really like fairytales and fables,” he said. “I thought how fun it would be to twist them, to show the darker side of people you think are good… It always captivated me to see another personality of a character.”
This fascination started spinning when Wilcoxon fell into creative limbo.
“I was kind of feeling how artists get—I was feeling down on my work, so I wanted do something fun to revive my photography a little bit,” he said.
This envisioned raw version of staple characters people grew up with through bedtime stories and “circle time” was dicey, and had to be done right at the risk of being corny. That is where Angelique Verver of Platinum Imagination Hair and Makeup came in.
“It started with me getting to know Angelique at a wedding [we were both working],” he said.
Verver, who moved to South Dakota from Texas, was also looking for a unique creative outlet.
“I have always enjoyed working on crazy runway looks, avant garde shoots, Halloween makeup… and I did that back in Texas, but I had not been able to work on that very much here,” said Verver. “I was ready to really see how far I could push my skills and creativity.”
Their first shoot was Red Riding Hood, which had the heroine more as a hunter than someone who is walking the forest. This strong feminine character is a reoccurring theme in Wilcoxon’s work.
“I just like that woman character who is really strong or kick ass,” said Wilcoxon, who notes Joss Whedan shows like “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” as inspiration.
After the results came in, it was partnership at first sight. The relationship between the two became monogamous quickly.
To read the entire article, pick up the March issue of 605 today!