“A free, really high quality photo-essay magazine. Fabulous!”Stephen Fry. British actor, writer and film maker
by Wendy Paton
“Don’t try to explain the photograph; let it keep it’s mystery”Édouard BoubatVISAGES DE NUIT is a collection of 51 black and white candid night portraits, shot over a six-year span beginning in 2006 in a myriad of international urban locales. I created this series of nocturnal images to explore the mystery of the night and to bring the viewer into my subject’s nighttime world. Intrigued by the mysterious and ever-changing nature of human personalities and their individual choices of expression, I choose to photograph at night, when I believe people feel the freedom to be as they wish, take on a personality that they imagine or simply be themselves, striping down any false face. It is this freedom of expression at night that I search for in my subjects. My fascination with the darkness allows me to document with truth and clarity what I see in the people of the night.
My interpretation of these candid moments is further emphasized by the deep contrast and dynamic printing style for this work. The images’ dark, gritty characteristics purposely convey the surreal quality of life at night, and what I feel is hiding behind what we normally view as reality. Using only available light, I shot these images both indoors and outside at night with manual, analog cameras, affording me both optimal control of my camera and film choices. Insisting with this series to only shoot candid images, allows the real premise of this work to project itself without any artificial set-ups. Viewers may at times question the candid nature of several of the images, having difficulty believing that the subjects have not been posed by me to look into my camera lens. In reality they are all true candid shots and in that complexity, will force the curious viewer to look further to figure it out. It is my intention as the artist, to leave the questions unanswered.