Photographer Cam Kirk was on the road with Rae Sremmurd and Lil Wayne we he learned about the death of the Atlanta rapper Bankroll Fresh. When Kirk finally returned home, trying to think of a way to memorialize his friend, he came back to a concept he had around the time of The Trap God, a 2015 pop-up gallery show of his Gucci Mane photos held inside a church. Originally he wanted to showcase his photography on billboards throughout Atlanta, but it wasn’t possible for financial and logistical reasons. “I didn’t know how I was going to do it,” he says. “It was just too big of an idea.”
For Bankroll Fresh, Kirk scaled it down and leased a single billboard on Northside Drive and 10th St, near all the city’s recording studios, and put up a somber black and white image of the rapper. It’s now been up for about a month and has quickly become a local landmark. The Bankroll Fresh billboard is the first installment of Kirk’s Day 4 project where he plans to take over a different one around the city every month, featuring a newly shot image each time. He’s recently launched a Kickstarter project to help make it happen.
Kirk only took up photography in 2012 after graduating from Morehouse, though his father has been a professional photographer for more than 30 years. This was around the time that rappers began hiring their own cameramen to document their lives and Kirk soon began doing a lot of work with Young Jeezy, as well as Schoolboy Q whenever he came to Atlanta. He soon became a local fixture, working with talent from all over the city and hitting the road with them.
But the Day 4 project also recalls another moment in Atlanta’s history, back in the ’90s before everything went digital and the city’s skylines were filled with billboards for both the So So Def label the Black Mafia Family. “They were something that was big part of the culture,” says Kirk. “It is pretty dope that I can put up a billboard, something that hasn’t been done in a minute. It is creating that old feeling, that nostalgia.”
Images courtesy of Cam Kirk