Pamela Reed and Matthew Rader enjoy cats, stuffed animals, pizza, outer space, augmented reality and lots of other modern things. Despite being a couple of very talented and avant garde New Yorkers who have countless impressive strings to their bow, their principal pride and joy appear to be their (albeit very sophisticated looking) garden (two flat wooden boxes) on the roof of their apartment block. Your ‘realness’ is very engaging, Reed + Rader!
Volt Café: When, where and why did you start working together?
Reed + Rader: We met while attending The Art Institute of Pittsburgh. We originally met because Pamela had a first generation iPod, which was unheard of at the time, and I wanted to test it out. It’s funny that technology actually brought us together, and now continues to inspire us. We have been working together for over 7 years.
VC: What made you decide to work together?
R + R: Even in the beginning when we worked under separate names, one person would invariably be at the other’s shoots or helping out on projects. Eventually we realized that we should just work together officially to strengthen productions and ideas.
I don’t know how, but things just click when we’re together. Maybe it’s because we spend every minute together, or maybe it’s just generally we like the same subjects, but working together it’s as if we are of one mind. Something can happen on set and we just look at each other and one is already saying what the other is thinking. We usually don’t have a whole lot of different opinions on general direction or what we want to create in our body of work.
VC: What is your background?
R + R: After the Art Institute of Pittsburgh for Photography we went to the School of Visual Arts (NYC), again to study Photography. Matthew is currently going to NYU ITP in order to explore the imaginative use of communications technologies. We both come from smalltown America. Matthew is from Ohio and Pamela is from Pennsylvania. Our families are both blue collar hard working families; growing up we didn’t have many artists in our family or anyone remotely doing what we do.
VC: Who are your clients?
R + R: Dazed & Confused, V, Pop, Spiral, Neo2, SSENSE and various other magazines, online stores and designers.
VC: Have you always wanted to do fashion?
R + R: I think we use fashion in a less traditional manner of what the mainstream does. We don’t use fashion in our work to show the ‘everyday’, we use fashion to show characters that only exist for a limited time. The ability to create characters using costumes as well as by using various postproduction tools is very exciting to us. In fashion we like the more ‘outside of the box’ designers; they seem to have a more tech advanced and structural aesthetic.
VC: Where do you see yourself in the future?
R + R: Augmented reality and interactivity are two large subjects that we hope to continue to work on and progress with. The idea of augmented reality and being able to transform your world and everything you see is mind blowing; the possibilities are endless.
VC: What has been the highlight of your career so far?
R + R: I think just having the ability to work on projects with your best friend, as well as alongside a team that is excited and creative is the main highlight. It’s getting all these different people together who all have the same idea in mind and bringing something to life that initially only existed in our minds.
VC: Inspiring designers, bloggers, photographers, artists? Share with us!
R + R: Inspiration comes from futurists such as Ray Kurzweil, Friends With You, Brody Condon, 0100101110101101.org and Anthony Goicolea. A great new online magazine/platform is Spiral. And we love the work of Stylist: Aki Maesato and Hair Artist Saya Hughes.
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