Between organicity and brand image, the harmony of Studio Valentin Abad
Luxury products, flowers and fruits come together in the images of the french photographer Valentin Abad. His brand works, for cosmetics, jewelry and magazine, are inspired by his personal artistic experiments. Sculpture and installation give him the necessary space to test the possibilities of the organic elements that he mixes, like a common thread, with his commissioned works. For Valentin Abad, the vitality of flowers and fruits make, for sure, brand images more sensitive and more palpable to the viewer.
What event marks the birth of Studio Valentin Abad?
My departure from Akatre, the creative studio that I have co-founded and developed through photography for over ten years. I felt the need to move on, to get back into difficulty, to find the freshness and spontaneity of my beginnings, while being able to sign my own images. Today it’s like starting over from scratch but with a solid background in photography, a vision of what I want to do and how I want to do it. And at the start, I tell myself that I did well.
You specialized in luxury branding. What does your photographic sensitivity look like?
My sensitivity to the still image comes from both my personal history and my hobbies. I was immersed in creation through my family who also practice art forms, which has its good and its bad sides. I also practice sculpture and installations apart from commissioned photography. These two sections allow me to reveal more of my intimacy and to continually explore new forms. The sculpture favors in me a certain letting go. Thank to that, I’m never frustrated when I answer commands.
Today, the photographic universes that I develop are more and more sensitive. Before, I had a tendency to justify things too much. Now, even if I place a framework for creation, spontaneity takes the predominant place of the image.
The organic, whether it is the fruits, but also the flowers, hold a very particular importance in your images. Why ?
Fruits and flowers are such photogenic elements that are hard to resist. The history of still life proves it. Each flower or fruit is a testament to something unique that I have no control over. I have the feeling that the flowers humanize the brand images. They first add sensitivity, then warm the image by removing the distance between the viewer and the object.
For your personal project Les Liants, you play with a dangerous balance of the organic.
Les Liants is a personal photographic series that I have been making for several years. I try through still life to forge links, interaction and dialogue. I illustrate this thought by comparing elements, especially organic ones, which I assimilate to a living form, and by extension to human beings.
In floral composition you give a unique balance to the flowers to sublimate the product without surpassing it by their beauty. How do you do it?
It’s a lot of practice. It is a balance which is done here with flowers but which is also done when composing an image. The flower captures a lot of light and attention. Like a color in paint, you just have to succeed in dosing it. I don’t prefer one flower over another. They all have a very specific interest in being photographed. I tend to like fresh flowers and, right now, specifically, parrot tulips.
What is your dream project ?
Shoot Johnny Halliday on a pony surrounded by flowers, unfortunately I will never do it. More seriously, even though I would have genuinely loved to photograph Johnny, my dream project would be more of a dream career, meaning having the opportunity to shoot regularly in good conditions. This longevity that I seek in my practice is essential for me to refine my words and my senses.
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