RECAP: West Coast Hip Hop A History In Pictures With Mike Miller at Known Gallery

By | February 9, 2012 at 4:27 pm | No comments | Featured Post, PHOTOGRAPHY, Recaps

The new book, West Coast Hip Hop, A History in Pictures, documents Mike Miller’s work in the 1990′s with artists like 2Pac, Cypress Hill, Snoop Dogg and Easy-E. To support the release, Known Gallery displayed 43 never before seen images and kicked off opening night with old school rap, a Chevy Impala and Colt 45. We had a chance to speak with Miller, the photographer responsible for the iconic images of some of Hip Hops biggest legends.

You grew up in Santa Monica, learned photography in Paris and worked in Barcelona. How did you get to this place working with these guys?

I know, right? Everyone asks me that! It’s crazy but It was just a series of events, and being at the right place at the right time. It was Paris to Spain, then back to LA. I was working with different companies, I did a Lynyrd Skynyrd cover, worked with jazz artists and then Arabian Prince was my first rap job. When I was shooting for Stussy I hooked up with Muggs,(Cypress Hill) and it went from there. When we did the first cover I didn’t realize how influential it would become for Hip Hop, or even on my career.

One of the things I love about your work is that it seems that you are really capturing a moment, like the image with 2Pac walking down the sidewalk in front of the hubcaps, that’s a great photo. What was that like and how was it working with him?

Thank you. Thank you. Yah, he was a really good guy, we did a lot and liked working together. When I would photograph him I tried to make it like a movie, he was natural so I would kind of just set up in the background and watch. Those were some of the best shots

Yah, they are amazing.The whole show is great. I love the one with Easy-E and the skateboard.

That was my skateboard! I had it with me and he liked it so I took some shots. No one had seen those before.

You can get info about West Coast Hip Hop, A History in Rap and see more images at

-Erin Mitchell

Photos by Jenny B.

© 2011 ILLSOCIETY Media Group LLC. All rights reserved.