Gifted African American cinematographer who established himself on financially modest but artistically ambitious independent features before shifting to major motion pictures as a d. p. and genre films as a director. Dickerson became known as the ace director of photography for fellow NYU alumnus Spike Lee. His vibrant painterly camerawork enhanced Lee's student film "Joe's Bed-Stuy Barbershop: We Cut Heads" (1980) and his subsequent first six features. His first feature credit was John Sayles' "The Brother From Another Planet" (1984), an engaging social parable about a mute alien stranded in Harlem, which benefited greatly from Dickerson's soulful portraits of the faces and places of Black folks. He has achieved great success in conveying the full spectrum of African American coloring by utilizing various tinted lights and colored backdrops. Dickerson has also shot films by Michael Schultz ("Krush Groove" 1985), Robert Townsend ("Eddie Murphy Raw" 1987) and John McNaughton ("Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll" 1991).