I am very happy to report shooting with Franz Szony for the Spring Slick It Up ads was a total blast. I discovered his work on Instagram, I also discovered my personal assistant on Instagram its a better/bigger social medium than expected, and I was really captivated. His work felt very modern and fantastical and creative and clever with the usage of paper, paint, and digital mediums used in ways that fool your eye and force you to ask "Wait a minute what exactly is "real" in this image?". I always like that, Im a curious semi control freak type person so I like to try and decipher the process and like it when I'm tricked and learn new things. I like to see the "magic" behind photography and like Jean Paul Goudes or Tim Palens work I like it when they sometimes reveal the process or incorporate HANDS ON elements to the photos as opposed to just doing things all in photoshop. I find the usage of hands on tricks admirable and respectable. Its like the difference of being a WIZARD or a PERSON ON STAR TREK. Im not crazy about Star Trek (id say I'm 70/30 split between fantasy and technology) because its just people using technology, they themselves aren't necessarily clever where as a "wizard" has the ability to call upon knowledge and channel it themselves, very different things. YES I just broke down the art of photography into WIZARD or STAR TREK, both have merits but Im more into wizardry than technology but technology most certainly has its place. Im from the 80s and the 80s was the last "hands on" era but ALSO eagerly devoured and celebrated new technology with a flair that I don't wed seen since the 20s, well maybe the 50s? (ew why do I sorta hate the 50s especially being the 80s were so 50s) so thats why Im into both. I hope the children of today appreciate a hands on approach because its soo much more admirable, artistic, and REAL and the personal exaggeration that comes through with the "hand" or apparent/deliberate LACK of the hand "Patrick Nagel" is INTEGRAL to the ART of story telling. The flawless removal of this element used in art that is purely computer generated seems far more empty and charmless.
Like many of my friends Franz is an OLDE SCHOOL QUEEN, he wore a kaftan and fishnets while shooting. Lit like a museum his studio was a true super villains lair complete with Glen closes costume from 101 Dalmatians. I was pleasantly surprised and felt very at home. Its good to see nice lighting when you walk into a photographers studio/home because as a photographer lighting is obviously THE THING so its a good sign when you see they're aware of the importance of it in their own home. He worked very differently then most photographers because he didn't shoot very many photos it was more of a get the pose totally right and then CLICK, one picture. I was thrown at first as Im used to 2087 photos per look but this was refreshing and kind of easy as Im very wooden so this kind of method works really well for me. I am NOT FLUID and NOTHING comes by casually gesturing to and fro. I am a MANNEQUIN and prefer having an idea for a pose and doing that pose and then moving to the next shot. Im too self aware and don't have a good enough body to be shot from any angle. I know how I want to be shot and thats it, don't shoot me straight on because my pelvis is wide and my neck is too thin. I need to be in profile with the torso TWISTED and the limbs have to be EXTENDED. Im a praying mantis, don't ask me to be a golden retriever. Franz got this and I think we got the shot. I can't show you the two selects I made for the ads of course but my concept was "Unbothered bitchy powerful god reclining in the heavens with neoclassical and modern elements"… a no brainer.
All the work pictured in this article is of course the work of Franz Szony. I purchased the Raja print, I fell in love when I saw it and its was caused me to contact him.