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|zoe,nyc feb 2011.
|untitled sky ,2010
|Charlie, London 2010
|Jazz Jamieson, East London
|NYC Jan 2011
|Hudson River,NYC July 2011
|Moby,NYC Jan 2011.
|NYC Hawk 2011
|Canyon Dan, Topanga CA,June 2009.
|David,Topanga CA Aug 2009
|Thomas Hetherington-Mint Model Mgmt
|I take pictures because it’s fun. There was no grand plan
for it, no expensive art school degrees or strategy. People have
always been fascinating to me and I started drawing faces at seven
years old, mainly copied from magazines and Richard Avedon photo
until I developed enough of a technique to do my own stuff. Painting I
see as solitary and as a source of meditation. Shooting brings me
right into the
physical present and conscious interaction with my environment.
Watching for which moment to capture. I love both expressions and
feed each other.
|Two years ago , I bought a little Canon G9 to catalogue
artwork and to take pictures to use as source material
I shot some pictures for a commissioned portrait and
realized that I
loved the process of shooting someone’s picture. So I
the camera with me everywhere I went and my life
opened up. I have
had the priveledge of photographing some amazing , ,
people and situations in such a short time with such an
camera that I know I’m being led by some magical hand
|My dad makes
documentary films and my mom was a model and painter so
been attracted to the intimate , raw minimal image but with a
painterly composition and glamour. No big photo crews,
or huge productions. Just me, the subject, natural light and
curiosity; learning something about them , life, love , art and
every single time.
Isn’t that what it’s all about?
|I was born in New York City into a family of
artists. My father , Jean is an Emmy winning documentary film maker ,
mother Chantal is a painter and both my grandfathers were
photographers. There are also classical musicians, chefs that have
cooked for US Presidents, writers, and dad’s cousin was the painter
Jean-Michel Basquiat. Drawing began at seven years old and painting
began at the age of eleven.
Donna Karan gave me my first professional
creative gig when she created a position for me at her Menswear
Collection as a junior designer. It was a job that consisted of
vintage clothing sourcing , sketching , creating seasonal inspiration
boards, assisting with fashion show casting and production , and
photographing street trends. It was during this two year period that
creation of the photographic portrait image , from clothing, to
texture ,to light ,to composition, to subject matter, began to
subconsciously seep into my brain. It was here that I was featured in
some DKNY promotional videos , photographed for DKNY’s ad campaign and
began to realize that the artists life was never a straight line. I
left DK Menswear , as clothing design was never my passion , and
armed with Donna’s blessing , a cool wardrobe and a headshot by master
fashion photographer Peter Lindbergh , off I went to study acting
and film .
After a pretty successful couple of years
doing TV commercials , I found that all of my down time , and there
is way too much of that as an actor , was spent drawing , taking
pictures and painting portraits. It was another chapter where what I
was learning and absorbing and truly connecting with, was indirect.
Three or four days of work acting in commercials covered all my
expenses for a year. Out of all of this free time came the creation
of my first solo show of paintings , and the real beginning of my
life as an artist under my own terms. I certainly didn’t become an
overnight art star , but as a result of that show ,I began mentoring
child artists in risky inner city neighborhoods in and around NYC .
More shows, private collectors and commissions soon followed , many of
them film and fashion world players.
The turning point came when I was
commissioned to paint the three sons of “Twilight” producer Wyck
Godfrey in Los Angeles and I needed to photograph them first. I had
never photographed complete strangers before and everything I knew as
visual artist , and learned as an actor , fell right into place. My
eye for composition, atmosphere, color, light, clothing , grooming
,and as importantly, my actor’s ability to quickly and authentically
connect with a subject, turned out some good photographic source
material for those paintings. The pictures caught the eye of a fashion
model friend who needed photos . Her agent loved the pictures and I
haven’t looked back. I have since photographed new faces for several
modeling agencies in NY and London, shot a large series of fine art
yoga portraits for Jivamukti Yoga NYC, the City Lights Ballet of
Boston, behind the scenes photographs on film sets as well as many
celebrity private sittings . I live in New York ,but the world is my
|Bella Oledan NYC 2011