I have been given four questions to answer by soulfriend, artist, motivator and curator; Julia Elmore. I never find these things easy but I shall try. Please check out Julia at www.becreativedaily.com
Ok, first question…
How does my creative process work?
You know sometimes it’s just grabbing the camera and getting out there, making a habit of carrying around this very expensive and heavy piece of gear and just shooting something that stands out. If I am on a mission, then other things come into play, generally for the more personal work it is more an emotional thing and automatic, I am looking for shapes or pattern a quick or glitch in the norm. I say “automatic” because I will see something and immediately the picture is taken, unless it proves to be a little tricky and then I am trying to frame it how my brain sees it and sometimes…the two things don’t gel too well. Portraits and people are a completely different process. I do prefer to know a little about the subject and I like to strike up conversation before the shoot, ideally I like to move away from the camera as not to have this barrier between us. That disarming but communicative way of shooting is very much inline with how Richard Avedon worked, I wonder if he would have approved?
How does my work differ from others in this genre?
Hmmm…My work…it’s a bit dark isnt it? I think I have found my” voice” though it is still being refined, still in flux. I am known for my tonal palette, that is the comment I get a lot from my peers. I tend toward the gritty but my influences are from the French classical photographers, so tone and precision have to be strong. I like a little drama too, even if I am shooting the most mundane of things.
What am I working on?
I always have a project or two, currently it is a workshop and studio idea, an amazing addition to the community if it can get off the ground, sadly the public interest isnt terribly high at the moment but you have to keep going when you know something is right! I have been touring around a few of the national trust homes and gardens of late, it is casual stuff so no great masterpieces, too many screaming kids and sightseers for great photography but it is an extraordinary glimpse into the England I care a lot about.
One thing that has come up is the US and UK album covers for The Late Road Lunatics and a new gallery featured on the “Handmade by Zealots” site handmadebyzealots.com, Izzy, Phil South and Brent are putting all of this together and very nice it all looks too. Also this week I will be shooting the Lunatics in Brighton and also the amazing artist Kim Pace (www.kimpace.co.uk) So..always a project. I have several somethings in the midst though nothing I can talk about yet, they sit simmering for the right time.
Why do you do what you do?
I have always taken pictures, whether it was with an instamatic or a large format beast, it has always been there, before the music, before the paint. Formerly I knew that taking senior pictures and weddings were not for me, there had to be a different route, finding the right light, cloud base, scenery and nailing it is always a good feeling. Shooting a portrait and getting more than the customary smile and delving much deeper is always going to top everything else too. It is a cliche but I need to do this and I feel like crap if I dont!
If you read this then I send this out to Kim Pace, Brent Jackson and Kim lone, three tremendous artists…