I’m stumped. I’m not sure how to describe my own photography. My assistant Thomas Schäfer has begun a new project, and I seem to have inspired the guy… he built a set, rented a lot of furniture, and worked with actors to create some highly narrative images. We were talking about this style today, and even though I can think of plenty of photographers who inspire me, who have gone before me, or who I consider contemporaries… I wish I could find a quick phrase to sum up this style.
The great masters of this are Gregory Crewdson and David LeChapelle, but there are guys like Erwin Olaf and Eugenio Recuenco who are doing technically inspiring work.
Maybe it’s a good thing that there isn’t a phrase yet. On some level, it’s a very deliberate process, much more like painting than it is photography. Every item gets carefully placed, and is vested with some meaning… why put a pomegranate there? Why aren’t they looking at each other? Should the light be coming from slightly below the main character? What I do isn’t simply taking a picture, it’s making an image. And that is very distinct and specific way to stage a shot.
…here’s another teaser from my new series, tentatively entitled the Dark Project. Obviously a lot of Caravaggio, but also some Füssli in the mix.
EDIT: I’m just going with “Narrative Photography” for now. It’s kinda what I do …