Interviews / Stories
Photographer Rudy Lamboray (Belgium)
Tell us something about yourself :
I am a single father of a young eight yo superhero. I’m 41 and i’m married with several cameras for more than 25 years. I never studied photography, I learned what I know by myself with tons of books, tutorials and mistakes.
How and when did you get into photography?
I was twelve, my father gave me a little Kodak Ektralite 400 for a vacation week with my school. My first film was not bad at all, I realized that I could show how I see the world with this tool. As I couldn’t (and still can’t) write, sing, sculpt or paint, it was a good solution for me.
What does photography mean to you?
A lot. It’s more than a passion, it’s even tattooed on my skin, I think about it almost every hours, I translate everything I see or hear in possible photos, just like a composer could be inspired by the voice of a bird or a sound in the street I guess.
Please briefly describe your photography style for our readers.
For years, anger was running in my veins so I did a lot of very tough things with huge contrast and clarity. Two years ago I made a book of portraits with Belgian comedians titled “The Dirty Fifty” (http://www.rudylamboray.com/dirtyfiftyproject).
After a heart attack, the anger is almost gone and I try to come back to something more sweet. I work more and more with analog cameras like a Yashicaflex ASII of 1954. The 6x6 format inspire me a lot. To me digital photography became too clean, too perfect, I rarely see something interesting in this. As Asian people say “Wabi Sabi” which means perfection is in the imperfection that’s why I love Polaroids and photos with a texture, almost a soul.
Where do you get inspiration from?
From everywhere. I feed my brain with tons of ideas from books, nature, mixing things which were not supposed to meet. I understand your question and I suppose you’re waiting names of great photographers from me so let’s say Lindbergh, Jonvelle, Demarchelier, Stern, Lagrange and many others.
I must say I meet a lot of photographers who has no ideas who these guys are, it’s insane. They buy a 5k camera and they pretend to be photographers. It’s like someone saying he loves Rock’n Roll but has no idea of who the f*** is Elvis Presley. So funny.
Think you in advance what you want in the picture?
I try to prepare a few but I prefer to let the door open for magic moments to come. I also worked as a press photographer and I learned to react really fast to the situations coming to me.
Studio, on location or both?
I think studio is perfect for commercial things like pack shots. Location is the second most important character on a portrait picture. Great portraits are made in studio I don’t discuss about that but the environment also helps your model to feel things, air, a perfume, the heat of the sun or the impact of the rain and you can see that on his/her face which is good for the photo.
Would you consider yourself a hobbyist or a paid professional?
Ahahahaha I love this question. I’ll answer with a simple idea : I have a VAT number (TVA for French readers and BTW for Flemish readers) which means I’m a pro.
What has been your most memorable session and why?
A session with Benoit Poelvoorde a famous Belgian comedian for my book. Everybody told me he was unreachable. I met him on set and he gave me forty seconds for his portrait but during that very short moment it seems that the time stopped. I think I entered the Twilight zone…
What has been the biggest source of inspiration in your work?
I can’t give a unique source. For the moment I really appreciate the work of Fabrice Mabillot and Sacha Rovinski.
Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?
I really don’t give a f*** of the brand. It’s a sterile war. I have a Nikon FE, a D800E, a Polaroid sx70, an I-1 and a Yashicaflex… Never in the history of photography someone recognized the brand of the camera seeing a photo coming from it.
What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business?
Be patient, buy books and practice. Hard working is the only way. Someone told me once : “Never compare your work with the work of someone else if you don’t give the same time to your passion than he does”.
What do you think of our new magazine?
Your made something about Laurence a wonderful Belgian model and one of my photos was in your magazine that’s how I know you and probably how you know me now as well. I’m really curious to know more so let’s following you! And wish you the best!