"I wanted to capture a younger side to Jamaica, maybe the more modern Jamaica and not the typical images you might see of Rastafari smoking a spliff,” says Scarlett Carlos Clarke. The London-based photographer (and co-founder of Hate Zine) has just returned from a trip to Jamaica where she fell deeply in love with the beauty of the country.
Driving in the dark of night from Kingston to Fairy Hill, Portland – a four hour journey full of potholes – she recalls, "Every time we drifted off to sleep we would be jolted awake by the sound of a huge truck horn followed the brightest headlights coming towards us at full speed and our stoned taxi driver swerving to one side.” On arrival, she found herself on top of a hill, surrounded by shacks, families, goats and “ALOT of wild dogs...I didn’t see one tourist the entire time we were there, it felt very local.”
Sleeping under a full moon in the jungle as dogs howled in the background, making jerk chicken and playing dominoes with locals made her feel “like I had finally arrived in Jamaica”, and helped ignite an appreciation for the country that had long been running in her family.
“My uncle used to go every year, he loved reggae music and I guess he wanted to experience that first hand. I think he loved the slower pace of life, he liked the people and the different characters he met... I guess it’s one of the only islands in the Caribbean which isn’t totally Americanised yet. It still feels quite real.”