Snapping at eternity and capturing life in small pixels is the fastest most efficient way to lie the truth.

 

Vadukul's style is more than photographic esthetics or professional fashion shooting.

 

 

You cant sell news stories that have data and cautious predictions. Where is the panic? Where is the impending doom? C'mon people , give me something to work with here…

    Opinions / Science / Theory of Relative Ignorance  
 

..and as I was a yuppy marketing and advertising executive for the better part
of a decade, I am not really impressed with stories of selling your soul to the devil...

    Art & Culture / Music / Blues / Robert Johnson  
Max Vadukol - Fashion fun fiend


Max Vadukul is a free spirit. Working in a commercial world, but still as free as you can get.

When I was doing a series of documentary projections in a photojournalist bar, showing dozens of documentaries about photographers for almost a year, the film about Vadukul was one of the few I had to screen twice, for the request of some of the people who missed it.

He is not a household name, and you will rarely find him on the top list on the side of photographers as Avedon, Leibovitz and the like, but there are very few photographers, especially anyone who is close to the fashion world that is not in awe at vadukul's portfolio and extensive body of work.

The word photographer is very different from fashion photographer. I consider myself a photographer. It’s my life."

 

He is most known from his work in Vogue Italy. For those of you who don’t know, the Italian version of vogues is the 'artistic' one. Italians always have that extra flare when it comes to design and visual creativity, and the Italian vogue is the heaven of fashion photographers, where budgets meet creative freedom.

Vadukul's style is more than photographic esthetics or professional fashion shooting. In all my shoots I follow an explanation that Vadukol gave in that movie, describing his shoots as dada experiments of action and life. I always thought that was something exceptional in a world where most professionals know exactly how they want the final product to look like, and for someone, anyone to make a good living in the commercial work with this attitude is nothing less than remarkable.

And his work is always so not perfect it makes you wonder what does he have that photo editors all over the world give him what seems like a free hand to do what he does best. Shoot. Like he does. Center the image? Why? It looks so much better like that, with all that tension in the empty part and half a model 'popping' from one side into the frame, like she is just stepping in for a visit. The top of the head cut off? Great. Half is out of focus? Wonderful.

And he managed to build a career on this imperfection in his perception of the job. It is like he doesn’t get these are commercial shoots and just does whatever feels right, and for some reason the clients always go with it. (well, I am sure there were frictions along the way. I know clients, but in the end Vadukul shows his true colors and not just coming to 'work'.

If you open stings album 'dream of the blue turtle' (wonderful album. Remember albums? Remember when sting was wonderful ? unfortunately both are now just a memory…) you will find a series of shots of sting just , well, the only word would be frolicking.

It wasn’t your normal portrait shots, it wasn’t even the 'musician at work' kind of shoots that you find so often on the back of albums or cds. It was sting playing around being silly. And it looks so real, so right, so sting (before he became a tantric lute playing sack of hot air)

The same goes for most of his work, be it portraits, fashion magazine work and even pure commercial work like the Yohji people campaign.

That is Vadukuls talent. Finding out what the person is REALLY  about and shooting that. Not the persona, not the normal masks you see on the surface. Essence. In my humble way I have adopted that approach in all my shoots.
Thank you max !