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Paul Giggle is an award-winning photographer and artist from England. Born in 1968, Giggle began his artistic career in the fashion industry, gaining experience in a range of roles from photography… Read more
Background Information about Paul Giggle
Paul Giggle is an award-winning photographer and artist from England. Born in 1968, Giggle began his artistic career in the fashion industry, gaining experience in a range of roles from photography to art direction. In recent years, Giggle has achieved renown as a fine art photographer. Preferring to shoot on film, he eschews post-production and digital editing techniques in favor of analog equipment and the alchemical nature of film.
Giggle’s vintage methodology and monochrome color palette are reflected in the timeless, refined aesthetic of his images, notable for their combination of composed grace and raw emotion. As an artist, Giggle draws influence both from the staged elegance of his fashion background and the immediate, unfiltered power of his documentary photographer idols Patrick Demarchelier and Peter Lindbergh. Giggle exhibits a rare ability to merge these disparate schools of photography in his powerful artworks.
Africa is a series of fine art photographs that were borne from Giggle’s lifelong fascination with the continent, and his desire to create a series of works with a direct conservational message. The works depict the beauty and grace of endangered animal species including elephants, cheetahs and snakes. By including human models alongside the animals, the artist underscores the inseparable bond between the human and animal kingdom and our own environmental responsibilities.
Despite the vintage aesthetic, the works are defiantly progressive in their outlook and intent. Giggle’s expertise in the fashion world is clear in the elegance that fills each frame. The resulting photographs are the culmination of months of planning, research, casting and shooting. As a technical and artistic undertaking, Africa is a considerable achievement and a stunning realization of Giggle’s vision.
Art for me lies within. I find my art through telling a story through my imagery. But first you must meticulously plan for your idea and then be prepared to throw your ideas away. Now that’s exciting!
From an idea to its materialization: How do you approach your work?
I approach my work quite systematically. The concept or idea usually starts with an image or idea that inspires me. Then I collate lots of reference pictures of landscapes, cities, buildings and the local culture. Once I have established my mood board, I try to work on reducing the imagery down to a firm look, feel and narrative that connects the images.
The next process is pre-production. This is the hardest part for me. My ideas can sometimes become very challenging to execute. With Africa, I needed to find models that were willing to ride elephants and walk with lions and cheetahs and then also find the animals that were tame enough to reduce the risks of injury, as well as finding trained people to control the animals.
What is your favorite book?
My favourite book is Sumo by Helmut Newton. I collect photography books that inspire me and Sumo is a collection of Helmut Newton’s remarkable work over the years. I love large-format books as they allow me to absorb every detail.
Which artist would you like to have coffee with and what would you discuss?
If I could, I would love to have a coffee with Peter Lindbergh - his purity and simplicity has always inspired me. I love that his pictures remain timeless, raw and true to his vision. He was a true master of simplicity and elegance.
How did you get into art?
My love of drawing from an early age ignited a passion for aesthetics and trying to perfect each drawing to look as real as possible. I bought my first professional camera at the age of 17. I didn’t quite know what I was doing and was mostly disappointed how the camera didn’t capture what I had hoped for. As a creative director, I had the pleasure of witnessing many photographers work, observing their lighting and processes. After several years, I was confident enough to create my first commercial photo shoot - A 10-page fashion editorial with a fabulous and experienced model from Paris.
Who are the people in your surroundings that influence you?
I am influenced constantly, whether from film, nature, Instagram feeds or other imagery.
As a film director I am always looking at commercials and films. This usually provides the seed for my inspiration. Masters of film like Bruno Aviellan creates stunning imagery by skewing the perspective of reality - a perfect image with imperfections.
Imagine you have a time machine. Where would you go?
I would go forwards 100 years to witness how people have changed and been influenced by the likes of AI and robots. Although it is important to embrace change, I feel the next 50 to 100 years will be extremely challenging. And I fear not for the better.
Other than art, what are you most passionate about?
My other passions in life are film, travel and architecture. I am currently in pre-production for my first feature film and am working on a 6-star resort concept in Botswana.
What are you working on right now?
My first feature film is occupying a lot of my time as well as my commercial film work.
I am currently working on a new photographic series, possibly in Iceland.