Disney Child Actor Says Discovering Photography Helped Him Cope With Depression

Disney Child Actor Says Discovering Photography Helped Him Cope With Depression

The Disney Channel production “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody” made him a household name while barely a teenager. Now an avid photographer, having shot talent such as Sam Smith and Sophie Turner for magazine covers, Cole Sprouse cites photography as his outlet for coping with depression.

For many, it’s not always straightforward to separate an actor from the character they play on screen. Comedy actors, for example, we expect to always be lively, upbeat, and funny in their day to day life, which makes it all the more surprising when we hear someone so successful has been suffering from depression.

Unlike other celebrities trying their hand at photography, Sprouse’s work feels authentic, and his enthusiasm for it genuine. In fact, he seems to have largely ditched the selfies from his Instagram page in favor of posting his work.

One more snow just for style @adeezia_adhel

A post shared by Cole Sprouse (@colesprouse) on

There’s no denying some of our best work comes from, and is inspired by, negative feelings. “I really used it as an outlet as a way to to create, and feel better, and it took off,” Sprouse said in a recent interview. “Most of my work took place in a landscape, and there was something profoundly serene about those landscapes, and I sort of used those adventures as an attempt to separate from not just the virtual world, but a world I felt paranoid was watching me.”

One more from @luomovogue with @samsmithworld Styling: @rushkabergman

A post shared by Cole Sprouse (@colesprouse) on

He goes on to explain that he was “sad and in a dark place,” which photography helped remove him from. And it seems to be working wonders for his motivation; He bagged some of his recent jobs by walking into the Conde Nast offices and asking upfront “Hey, can I work here?”

Check out some more of Sprouse’s work below. You may be pleasantly surprised.

@sophiet @wmag

A post shared by Cole Sprouse (@colesprouse) on

Once more with the Antelopian angels @dagsen

A post shared by Cole Sprouse (@colesprouse) on

For the palette 🎨

A post shared by Cole Sprouse (@colesprouse) on

Botswana

A post shared by Cole Sprouse (@colesprouse) on

Watch his full interview with Duan Mackenzie on YouTube.

Lead image by Quintin Gellar.

[via Teen Vogue]

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6 Comments

Amazing photos. i am glad he is keeping busy, especially with Riverdale getting even more popular. Like Jim Carey, who paints to cope and both their results are equally impressive.

Jack Alexander's picture

I just started watching Riverdale. So far, albeit a bit teeny, so good.

Anonymous's picture

Riverdale gets even more teeny and cheesy but it’s so hard to stop watching.

Michael Holst's picture

Im impressed with his photos. He is clearly pushing himself creatively with his concepts and besides the potential future of a good career it's good to hear that it's serving a purpose for him and his mental health.

I can't imagine the life of a child star. They often times seem robbed of their childhood and mental/social development. Fame at such a young age forces them to grow up so fast. I hope he keeps on finding peace in his work.

Anonymous's picture

Been following Cole for a while. He’s such an impressive photographer and his account trolling people that try to take pictures of him is hilarious. He’s also pretty good on Riverdale

I hear he can also wipe his own ass!

(If you don’t get the joke Cole and his brother Dylan played the kid in Big Daddy)

Jack Alexander's picture

I'm enjoying the Cole love on here. Nice to know I'm not the only one who rates his work!