Domo Caldwell | Part-time Sensei, Full-time Photo Lover

by Camille Johnson

We had the opportunity to interview photographer Dominique Caldwell (bka Domo) at his studio/loft. Check out the interview with this talented photog!


Moving Behind The Lens

I started in 2009 and the way I got started is through a close friend of mine, Khloe. She always carried a Nikon and one day she took a picture of me. And I thought “this is good.” I liked looking at myself really, so I started modeling. And that was weak. Modeling was real weak. I ain’t like it. It took me a minute to figure out I just like pictures period. I found a camera through my god-mom – and she gave it to me. So I was just playing around with that and it took off from there.


Unforgettable Shoots

I have 3 favorite studio shoots:

1. The most recent one I did with my friend Rosa.

2. I found a girl from Ann Arbor who never modeled and I had a shoot a month ago with her. That was awesome.

3. I finally did my first nude shoot with my friend Bijan and those came out really good.

This is gonna sound weird, but Des Moines, IA is my favorite city I’ve shot in outside of Detroit. It was really nice. It was a nice, clean city. It was quiet. You could tell they really didn’t have too much local attractions set up. There weren’t many bars, you know, their downtown wasn’t like ours with all this stuff to do. Their downtown is just like a downtown. I was walking around in the middle of the night and there was nobody around. It was like a ghost town at one point. But it was cool. It was peaceful. It felt safe.

Domo’s Dojo

My dream shoot is in Japan, in actual freaking dojo. Temple view. Cherry blossoms. Geisha. Fucking phenomenal. That’s what I got. That’s what I see everytime I think about going to Japan. I’m obsessed with Japanese culture -- I like the whole ninja/samurai thing. Feudal era living, I thought that was pretty dope. And it’s always been my dream to go to Japan. So I’d want to do my dream shoot in my dream city.


The Sensei's Bucketlist

1. Be featured in a magazine.

2. I want to work with more Asian and European models.

3. I really want to be flown out somewhere to do a shoot.

4. I want to shoot in the rainforest in Rio.


Travel, Travel, Travel

I’d like to do some more traveling this year. I’d like to get to NY. I feel like a lot of doors will open for me once I get to NY; I have a lot of friends there. I need to do some more on location shoots and I need to work with more male models in the high fashion industry. Those are the strong 2 things that I really need to do more of this year.

Aside from Japan, I really want to shoot in Manchester, UK. I’ve seen a lot of stylists and designers, and just the area and how it looks is pretty dope. But the UK is a cool place to shoot period. So let’s just chalk it up to any city in the UK lol.


Photog 2 Photog

We had Black Bottom Team Member Rowan and fellow photographer Ieisha asked Domo a series of photog questions.

Dream Lens? “I want that white bitch (70-200 mm). Basically a lens that would let me take a picture of the moon if I wanted to.”

Current Weakness? “Editing. Editing is my biggest weakness.”

Greatest Strength? “Natural lighting is my strong point, to the point where I don’t even need to use strobes no more. I think I’ve found my niche.”

Landscape or Studio? “I like both. I started off with landscape but I like both. Right now I like shooting in studios the best. Probably because I feel like I’ve been missing out for so long. I didn’t have access to a studio before, so I’m just soaking in the privilege of being able to get in the studio whenever I want.”

First picture you took? “My god-mother’s kitchen cabinet. The day she gave me the camera. It felt good.”

Love Domo's work? Want to learn more about the sensei? Follow him on Instagram @DomosDojo and @SenseiDomo. For booking and inquiries email