"Matthew, " 2015.
"I first met David when he photographed me for his book 615 Jefferson Ave," Green said of the late photographer David Armstrong, whose influence is evident in Green's own portraiture. "For the first time I had found someone I wanted to be like," Green recalled of visits with Armstrong that weren't just for photo shoots, but "just to see each other and talk."
It's not hard to see why Armstrong and Green hit it off: Armstrong was, after all, the New York Times-anointed "photographer of subcultures," and shared Green's penchant for capturing the models, artists, and LGBT people that made up his downtown crew (which in Armstrong's case included Steven Meisel, Patti Astor, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Philip-Lorca diCorcia and, of course, Nan Goldin.) "I truly cannot imagine where I would be without him," Green said, adding that his biggest lesson from Armstrong was the importance of integrity.
"Rivkah and Amanda," 2016.
Armstrong passed away in 2014, but at that point Green had already been shooting for years, having moved to New York for modeling—including gigs like a much buzzed about Calvin Klein campaign, and shoots for one of Armstrong's buddies, Steven Meisel. Increasingly, though, Green was finding himself more comfortable behind the camera instead.
Nef was hardly the only emerging talent Green seems to have discovered: last year, he also photographed the single-named model Dara, who may be unsigned but made her runway debut at Marc Jacobs's equally inclusive Fall 2017 show just this past Fashion Week.
Still, it's clear fame is hardly what drives Green in scouting those he eventually casts, whom he chooses in an attempt to "to illustrate what I see out in the world," rather than those typically showcased in editorials and on the runways.
For "Supreme Court," then, his new editorial in W's April issue, James was just involved in the casting as ever—even though the shoot included no less than 18 models. "I was in heaven," Green said of working with Edward Enninful, Jimmy Paul, Dick Page, and Piergiorgio Del Moro, who've not only inspired him through "countless images," but also ended up sharing his vision.
As for what's next for Green? "I'm currently working on three different projects," the photographer said. There's finishing up his "Young New Yorkers" series, a section of which we're showcasing here; continuing shooting "of the minute" portraits at anti-Trump protests in New York; and heading to LGBTQI senior centers to document their dances—in case you had any doubt Green was limited when it came to sticking with youth.