Tuesday, 6 September 2011

interview with John Lindquist

Hello John! Would you like to introduce yourself to my readers? And perhaps explain to them the origins of your surname while you’re at it.
Half Swedish-American and half Spanish. Born and raised in London. It’s good to keep things simple...
Isn’t it just, but seriously now who wouldn't want a Spanish twist to their beginnings?? EsplĂ©ndido!
How about you talk us through an average day in the life of you?
Still trying to work that one out myself.
Can you recall the moment when you decided you wanted to become a Photographer?
Not really. I took pictures from the age of seven... all the time... it happened very organically. Out of Art College it seemed the most sensible way to be creative and get paid to carry on making.
How would you describe your style?
I would say I'm anti "style". Prefer to think about it as an evolution of the things that were interesting (or not) to me at the time of producing the work in question.
And if you were to take a step back for a moment and reflect on your body of work, would you be able to pick out a continuous theme or themes that appear in your photographs?
Women, men, animals, colour, graphic, black and white, personality, movement.

A song that makes your heart skip a beat?
Too many songs to pick one... Lately been into listening to 'Little Wing' by Jimi Hendrix, 'Lights' by Interpol, ‘LYF’ by WU LYF and ‘Milk and Honey’ by Jackson C Frank...
Flawless taste.
To quote a little bio I read of you today… ‘Lindquist has already contributed to leading publications such as British Vogue, Russian Vogue, French Vogue, Turkish Vogue [we get it Vogue love you!] and the London Times, as well as capturing portraits of personalities as diverse as Lady Gaga, Carice Van Houten and Gaby Sidibe.’ Not too shabby John, not too shabby at all. But what’s left to do, and what keeps you excited for the next project when you have already achieved what quite a lot of photographers probably never will?
So much creative technology at our disposable seems completely unexplored. Pictures can now move, have sound, be zoomed in on, live streamed etc... I have a lifetime to figure it out and attempt to create meaningful expression from it.

How do YOU measure success in the industry you work in?
If you are doing something new, interesting, and exciting and still managing to pay the rent then you are successful in my opinion... I'm working on it!
You’re doing not bad.
I have to say I love the portraits you shot of Patrick Wolf for his new record, Lupercalia. Would you like to talk a little about the experience? I’d also like to know if you take a different approach to photographing a musician or actor than you might usually when working with an experienced model?
The approach depends on who you’re photographing and what you are photographing them for. With models I usually have control over the direction and then hope they bring something magic to it.
I took on the Lupercalia images and 'audio visual portraits' as a pretty rigid commission, so most of the direction came from early conversations with Patrick and his stylist Anthony Stephenson. In this case I tried to execute their vision as closely as possible.
Untitled from J O H N L I N D Q U I S T on Vimeo.

Speaking of ‘audio visual’ work [see videos above and below] you have shot some insanely superb short films Mr, films that have exhibited at the Louvre no less. GOD YOUR CONTEMPORARIES MUST HATE YOU. Is this something you see yourself spending more time on in the future? I mean, should we cross our fingers for a film longer than 6 minutes? Or god forbid a really good music video?!
So far all my films have been used for projections and things like that as in the Masha Ma AW11 show projection video as well as the Audio Visual Portraits that went on the Patrick Wolf tour. Saying that I'm taking the next 2 months off to shoot my debut short film set on the Amalfi coast in Italia! Look out for it at the start of next year!
Masha Ma from J O H N L I N D Q U I S T on Vimeo.

Date. In. Diary.
A guilty pleasure you can’t seem to quit?
Bourbon and ice cream! Not together... although I should try that...
You really should!
Who or what would you quote as a great source of inspiration for your work?
Stanley Kubrick, Alfred Hitchcock, Michelangelo Antonioni, Richard Avedon, Francis Bacon, The Goonies!
I think you’ve set yourself up for greatness with that shortlist of talent!
And which photographers working today [or no longer with us] are you particularly fond of [and why]?
Richard Avedon and Irving Penn. I like the humanity, beauty and effortless style they bring to what they do.
How do you like to spend your days when you are not working?
In deserted open spaces or with friends or both!

Your go-to song should you find yourself in a trashy karaoke bar?
Has to be 'I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That)' by Meatloaf. Needs a few people to really pull it off.
If I was to gift you a one way ticket to anywhere in the world but you weren’t allowed to return. Where would you choose and why?
No place like home... when you got no return ticket!
Aint that the truth. Been a pleasure featuring your words and photography John. Long may you continue to assault our senses.


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