Interview: Photographer Alexandre Souêtre
What sparked your journey into photography? How did you decide to invest in it?
It all started with illustration as a kid; inspired by the genius talent of 1970’s French artists such as Marcel Gottlieb & André Franquin. I then discovered, in high school, that I enjoyed filming and editing videos. It wasn’t until college, when I was studying marketing & communications that I found a passion for design & branding.
I pursued filmmaking and photography more seriously when moving to Los Angeles 4 years ago.
I now try and keep a balance between all formats.
Really, as far as I can remember, I have always been attracted to all forms of visual art - or art in general for that matter.
What do you do with your self criticism?
We have make-up sex, then we create together.
How would you describe your evolution through photography, from beginning to now?
I think, as a pragmatic way to explore the medium and play it safe, I started by aiming to capture grandiose moments and/or the single frame of a movement; convinced these were ingredients for objectively “good” photography.
I later realized that I was, in fact, truly drawn to the still, the calm, the non-happening, the intimate, the subtle, the lost, the minimal, the ever-so-slightly off & odd.
I feel a lot more comfortable with my style as a photographer now.
Anything that you wish people understood better about you and your work?
Well, I’d rather keep my work misunderstood; or cryptic. I think I like it better that way, as it leaves more room for the observer to do their part.
But if there was one foundation to my work that I would like to encode, it is innocence.
I try to feel like a kid when shooting; I’d like to maintain a certain fascination and lack of understanding of my subject and play off of that to communicate a purer emotion. As if forced to capture and translate a moment life hasn’t taught me yet.
What kinds of concepts and themes do you celebrate with your work the most?
A certain sadness, contemplation, reflection, simplicity.
I have a fascination for the tiny moments and feelings that bring small doses of hope and melancholy in our lives. I don’t think I can capture that intricacy but I use it as an inspiration for my work, to the best of my ability to translate my intuitions.
What kind of mindset and perspective do you go about life with?
Happiness lies within the small things.
Humans are violent but beautiful.
Nothing is ever black or white - Nothing fits in a box.
Art is the most important historical record.
What do you do to kick a creative block to the curb?
I cuddle with my dog / I eat bread and cheese
If peanut butter wasn’t called peanut butter, what would it be called?
Any significant or favorite experiences that being a photographer has brought you?
The quiet moments of interaction with a subject / The artistic collaborations.
Is there anything we didn't ask you about that you'd like to share?
So many things but no one truly cares - and that’s okay.
We would like to thank Alexandre for devoting his time throughout his busy schedule for this interview. If you’d like to stay updated with him you can follow him on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/axlsouetre/