By David Madawo
From his humble beginnings in highschool photography, Tyrell Kerr Douglas, also known as Kerrtisy, has captured Edmonton’s hip hop scene with expertise.
Kerrtisy’s first foray into digital visual media was taking pictures of architecture and his friends and uploading them to Instagram. When a young Kerrtisy’s Instagram started to blow up, he started pushing the envelope.
Regina based filmmaker Maurice Douglas, Kerrtisy’s mentor and uncle, encouraged his nephew to start using his photography skills towards film. Infact, Maurice Douglas gifted Kerrtisy with his first camera that would ignite his career; a Canon Rebel T3i.
“He was always like ‘Man you need to take it to the next level. You need to try film,’ and I was like ‘No, I’m a photographer,” said Kerrtisy. Sure enough, he would give in and start experimenting with video.
After a short stint at Humber College in Toronto, Kerrtisy came back to Edmonton and made the city his own. He says it started out by befriending local rapper, Axel Muco, who would become a frequent collaborator.
Kerrtisy began by directing for the rap group RSTARZ, which Axel Muco was a part of. In their explosive music video ‘Fire’ which dropped on Kerrtisy’s YouTube Channel on June 1, 2017. After collaborating a few more times, Kerrtisy’s style proved to be infectious to Edmonton, and the artist would find himself working with some of the city’s best talent: Cab’Ral, Visual Bread, Juice Boy, Levi Dane and many more.
Kerrtisy’s skill of bringing his photography to life in film is evident. Mimicking the shadow work, he uses modern tones and styles and often centered subjects and text, a style similar to his photography.
“You definitely wanna make sure your image and your work is ‘on-point’ all the time,” said Kerrtisy.
Having cited Tame Impala and Kanye West as inspirations, Kerrtisy is known to take a serious, dedicated approach to his art just like his muses do with their notable collection of work.
You can find Kerrtisy on YouTube and Instagram @Kertissy.