Last year, NYC’s daredevils—also known as Instagram’s outlaws—rose to fame by taking photos from restricted and risky locations. Among them was Humza Deas, the 18-year-old photographer whose camerawork from unbelievable heights will put your Instagram game to shame. From the Brooklyn Bridge in NYC to the top of the Princess Tower in Dubai, Deas has no qualms of climbing to the top of these massive structures.
Apart from having more than 130K+ followers on Instagram, the young photographer has been featured in multiple publications, including New York Magazine (which even used one of Deas’ most popular shots on its 10th edition cover), Maxim, Business Insider, and the Daily Mail. Deas also appeared in a video to promote the super tough G-Shock watch(. We caught up with him during his first trip to Dubai to talk about aerial photography and his experience in the Middle East.
OLIVE SEVILLA: How did you develop an interest in aerial photography?
HUMZA DEAS: I realized that I wanted to start taking aerial photographs when I asked myself, “How can I separate myself from the average photographer?” I try to show the viewers that as human beings, we can achieve anything as long as we truly desire it.
Considering the nature of your photography, do you follow any safety precautions?
I have health insurance in case I get injured. I don’t use any equipment as it gets in the way, and I prefer to work alone so that I don’t have to worry about others.
How did you choose Dubai as your first international location outside New York City?
My friend made me choose Dubai; he told me that it would change the way I see the world, and I agree completely. After experiencing the culture in the UAE, I want to see the rest of the world. Visiting the Middle East has been great; it made me realize that the region isn’t how people portray it—they made it seem like it was a terrible place.
Was taking pictures in Dubai different from New York?
There’s a lot less pressure when taking photos in New York; I grew up in that city so I know almost everything about it and I’m comfortable there. When visiting the UAE, I felt uncomfortable, but that’s a feeling I welcome as curiosity helps me fulfill my desires.
Do you have other interests apart from photography? What’s next for Humza Deas?
Skateboarding was my first love; I’ve been skateboarding for the last eight years. As for what’s next, I would have to say I have no idea what’s in store for me and I think that’s amazing.
Any advice for people who also want to be daredevils?
As artists, we’re capable of doing what we want, so don’t spend your life trying to follow someone else’s footsteps. You’ll just end up nowhere in the long run.
The Dubai Metro
Strolling around Dubai Marina
Sheikh Zayed Road
See more of Humza Deas’ photography on his Instagram.