Shingi Rice: An Inspiring Creative of Our Generation
Shingi Rice discusses representation, open-heart surgery, and her captivating photography.
Written by Maya Minhas
Growing up in Spain and the Southern U.K. was just part of Shingi Rice’s journey to becoming a photographer. While the experience remains largely influential in how the artist sees the world, Rice initially began fashion photography at eighteen years old with her friends. “As soon as I moved back to the U.K. and London, I wanted to photograph people like me, people that were not seen in the media as I would like to, people who would be happy to pick up a magazine and see someone who looks like them.” Seven years later, Rice is far from foreign to the world of misrepresentation, and her life experiences continue to shape the very intentional work she creates.
Her images are diverse, vibrant and thoughtful.
Although Shingi Rice got an early start to photography, it wasn’t until 2013 when she underwent open heart surgery that she decided to pursue her passion full time.
“I had open heart surgery at 20 years old, and even though my parents fully supported me, they didn’t really understand the idea of me taking pictures for a living. After having lived such a life-changing experience, I decided I wanted to spend the rest of my life photographing people and capturing moments.”
Today, Rice recalls her decision to disobey her mother’s wishes and pursue photography as the biggest failure that led her to her success today. It was that necessary leap of faith that led Rice to have exhibitions in Los Angeles and Copenhagen during her first year at London’s University of the Arts, a reality she could not have imagined five years ago. Fortunately, her parents have since jumped on board with her career choice and become her biggest fans.
Rice’s work is trailblazing and unlike that of many of her peers. As a recent B.A. graduate, her client list already includes names such as Warby Parker and Puma. Nevertheless, at only 25 years old Shingi Rice struggles to recognize her work as just that, “All of it to me is photography and it isn’t work to me, it’s my passion.”
Listing yoga and meditation as fundamental contributors to her happiness and success, Rice describes her brand and identity as unique, opinionated, honest, loud and tolerant. Just returning from a whirlwind of a three states and five-city U.S. tour, Rice continues to hit the ground running as she progresses throughout her career.
Before the end of the year, Rice is eager to share her most recent work and get started on setting up her own studio. As she follows the evolution of her own career, Shingi advises young artists to take the same leap and pursue what they love. “If you can feel it in your bones, you have to [do it]. Art is deeply rooted in every individual. You just have to have that one thought or sign telling you to do it. You should follow that dream.”