Interviews / Stories
Interview: Photographer Christophe Clovis (France)
Tell us something about yourself
I am a French photographer currently based in Paris. I’m from a small island called Martinique in the French West Indies. I have the luxury to be a professional as it is my only source of income.
I am a press, fashion and beauty photographer. I am part of a photo press agency. And I am specialized in celebrities (singers, actors, fashionistas, tv hosts, etc.). My main missions are public events where PRs need press coverage (movie premieres, brand launch parties, photocalls, interviews, concerts, etc.) and Paris fashion weeks. I also work directly for brands.
How and when did you get into photography?
I got my first DSLR in November 2010. One of my relatives who was a photo amateur wanted to sell his camera on eBay and I proposed myself to sell it which I never did as I fell in love of the object and I decided to learn how to use it.
What does photography mean to you?
Photograph y is my life. Everything I do for pleasure and for work is somehow related to photography. I left my office job (I am an engineer) 5 years ago, to become a professional. So, I am very serious about it. The first 2 years I studied photography technique after work and on weekends…putting aside my social life. I lost some friends in the process. Today I am happy.
Please briefly describe your photography style for our readers.
My photography style...hummm. hard to say. I am not very objective on my work. I have many different styles. But my fiancée, relatives, friends and followers tell me that they feel my imprint in all of them. I mostly try to tell a story even if it is very simple, to catch a moment or to create an aesthetically pleasing picture.
Where do you get inspiration from?
From Everywhere…books, movies, movie posters, songs… from any type of art as I breathe photography all the time
Think you in advance what you want in the picture?
Yes!!! Mostly. The more important for me is to convey an intent. I don’t “take” pictures…I “make” them. Even if my subjects are not aware of me.
Studio, on location or both?
Both. It depends on what I have to say.
Would you consider yourself a paid professional?
As I said earlier, I am a paid professional. It is my one and only activity. But I am also a hobbyist for I sometimes soot only by pleasure. When I work for a client or my agency, I don’t have the liberty to fully express myself. It can be a little bit frustrating. But when I shoot for myself with my team or when I shoot muse (whom I share my life with) I am free.
What has been your most memorable session and why?
I could have mentioned a Chanel or Dior fashion show, or when I shot Steven Spielberg or some internationally known actor (no..Kim Kardashian doesn’t count!!! Lol). But for me it was on January, 11th 2015 on the Place de la République in Paris after the terrorist attacks against Charlie Hebdo. I felt part of an historical moment amongst more than 1 million people demonstrating and marching against terror in the street
What has been the biggest source of inspiration in your work?
It has been photography in movies…hands down!!! I particularly care for the light in my shoots.
Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?
I don’t care! Lol. I own a Canon DSLR because my first camera was a Canon. But I can and have shoot on Nikon too. On some of my shoots I don’t even care to take the picture myself. On those shoots, I am more interested by the creative process. My favorite lens is 135mm f/2.0 L for outdoors and the 70-200mm f/2.8 IS L II. I love to get close and personal and to keep my distances at the same time.
What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business?
You don’t need to be skilled to live from your business. Yes, I mean it!! Of course, if you plan to be a renowned fashion photographer, your talent will be useful to get noticed but what you need most for any type of photography is NETWORKING and to learn to sell yourself. Every one you meet must know than you are a photographer and to know your work. Most jobs are obtained through people you know more than applying blindly to an ad or a casting. Don’t hesitate to make the world know you exist.
What do you think of our new magazine?
I sincerely thank you for the interest in me. The magazine is huge!!! A good directory for models and photographers and an excellent way to showcase our work. If I may…it lacks a clear artistic intent. But it is normal as it is a directory. I’ve seen very excellent work and profiles in it.
You Facebook or website
(older pictures and if you want to see some press work)