The Art of Culture


Part Two

A good photograph is one that communicates a fact, touches the heart and leaves the viewer a changed person for having seen it.


Irving Penn

LESSONS FROM JULES VERNE

Jules Verne satisfied my want of adventure as a child. I would be engrossed in his books for days, leaving the real world behind. I vividly remember the excitement that crept up on me as the protagonist made a discovery. As I was sitting in the Himalayas waiting out the storm, it dawned on me that some sort of connection had been forged between my youth and my career – something that started with Verne.

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In my work, I am a storyteller above all else. Instead of the written word, I use still images and film to share a narrative.

By selecting subjects, finding compositions, and through fashion and cultural references, my camera is a paintbrush allowing me to shape images with meaningful intention. Since much of my practice involves a focused look at a culture or location, the style becomes part of the story as well.

My work in Africa is especially indicative of this because I consider these images, such as those featuring the Rendille or Omo people, to be ethnographic portraits. They highlight the ornamentation and traditions of these culturally important areas that are in the midst of irrevocable change to their traditional ways of life.

By selecting subjects, finding compositions, and through fashion and cultural references, my camera is a paintbrush allowing me to shape images with meaningful intention.

Drew Doggett

BRINGING FASHION INTO THE FIELD

In the studios of NY I loved the details that went into each shoot. From the drape of the fabric on a dress to the angle of light that hit the model’s face, each photographer I worked with had their own style perfected by the most minute of adjustments. I appreciated learning the nuances and foundations of each.

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Today, my telling of any story is mediated by style and the tools I learned in fashion photography. Whether exhibited through the highly-designed scarification across a woman’s breast in Ethiopia or a calm and focused Icelandic horse galloping alone across a volcanic black sand expanse, I use tone, texture, form, negative space, and composition to harness the perspectives I have in mind.

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Read on to learn more about how I choose my subjects.


Read Part 3: Seeking What Counts