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ゆめ - Un rêve de Paris by Lionel Samain

A summer ago, I started this portraits project with journalist Ludmilla Intravaia, mesmerized by Japan. We are both from Belgium and moved together  to live in Paris. That’s not a huge cultural gap but it’s yet big enough to make us sensitive to the adventure our subjects are experiencing when leaving their thousand of miles far away island to meet the stunning  cultural shock of parisian streets. Chasing a dream of Paris, what do they catch?

Yuki's dream: "I was looking for something beyond my reach."

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Prints in Magazine by Lionel Samain

Fresh from the box, here are 3 recent collaborations for belgian magazine Victoire I received by mail today.

Juliette Greco, french singer and actress.

Juliette Greco, french singer and actress.

Four words for Juliette Greco: french variety music legend. She probably made my grand parents danced. The shooting took place in the "argentique suite" of the Lutetia hotel,  just few days before it closed for 3 or 4 years of remodeling. Maybe it will reopen as a "digital room".

André, street artist

André, street artist

This guy is a street artist who rides his scooter by night to paint his Mr A drawings all over the city walls. He is also the owner of several night clubs and a hotel in Paris. I took the liberty to place a graffiti of my own on his face. No skin armed in the process, though.

rwann & Ronan Bouroullec, designers

rwann & Ronan Bouroullec, designers

One of them is Erwan. And there is also a Ronan in the picture. And they design stuffs together as brothers should do. 

About substantial photographic skills by Lionel Samain

Toshiaki Komura, film director, Paris 2014

Toshiaki Komura, film director, Paris 2014

I've probably shot hundred of portraits on assignment for magazines and various clients. This particular area of my work feels fabulous as it's always a wonder to face up actual situation with improvised creativity. Although, once in a while, a portrait photographer will be challenged to reveal the core of his essential skills. Let me clarify this one for you. It's not about pure techniques but more about a photographer's ability to express himself with only the very heart of his potential. He's got to act quickly with the substantial part of his art and trade. What's in the way? Surprise. It's not  necessarily a challenge coming from the person the photographer is assigned to shoot. It may also derive from the timing or the nature of the location. Usually, I'm given three basic informations on an assignment: who, where and when. "Where" and "when" may be subject to negociation but rarely. Sometimes tension comes out of nowhere. For exemple, I remember that time when I was sent to an exotic location for five days, flying business and accomodated in a luxurious hotel, only to be given, last minute,  90 seconds to shoot the portrait I was there for. You need to be zen and focus on the present event if you want to go back home with a picture. 

Recently, I went to shoot some portraits in a hyper timed context. I definitively couldn't bargain over where and when. It was taking place in a palace in Paris. But as I was showed the location for the photoshoot, I walked from luxurious lobby to pompous halls to modest staircases and finally to a dissapointing tiny conference room. And my first appointment was to arrive in 5 minutes. That's the kind of situation that monitors where stands your substantial photographic skills. Five minutes to think about something else than the unphotogenic room you are in and to set the lights and camera. Well, I'm glad this test happened early this year and here are the results.

Kôzô Morishita,  film director, producer and Vice president of TOEI ANIMATION

Kôzô Morishita,  film director, producer and Vice president of TOEI ANIMATION