We are excited to welcome the ever talented Charles de Vaivre to ArtStar!  

This French born photographer has a knack for capturing the momentous in the seemingly mundane.  From french animals with attitude to precise architecture aesthetics, Charles captures the compelling and the beautiful in every frame. 
We sat down with Charles to discuss his evolution as a photographer and unique style.

AS:  You were a graphic design artist before a photographer, what made you switch to focusing on photography?

CV:  I have indeed been a designer for years, I was doing global design, graphic design, installation design and some photography as well. I love design and I've just put a hold on it for now as I’m focusing on photography, as some photographers did before me like Carlo Mollino or Willy Rizzo.

I’ve always wanted to do photography, I think it started when my grandfather, a movie director, offered me my first camera. It was great to learn the basics with him. I choose to study design though, but I always knew that I’ll come back to photography. I think I became a photographer not even realizing it, it has always been in me, it’s my passion, it’s the way I express myself the best and I just decided to make it my life, and to mix pleasure and business. Design was a step in my artistic history, and it deeply influenced the way I work as a photographer.

Photography also allowed me to have the lifestyle I love, travel the world, meet people but more importantly fill my endless curiosity for difference and taste for beautiful.

AS:  What is your favorite subject to photograph?
CV:  Architecture and Animal Kingdom are my favorite topics, for now... Architecture is something I have been photographing since I'm 8 years old. Cities are moving constantly and I love to catch this evolution from the old to the new. Also Architecture photography is very demanding on the composition, there is a long and rigorous process to achieve the perfect balance of masses, of plain and empty,… it’s not that far from design when you think about it.
Animal because there are so majestic and we don’t often have the time or the opportunity to look at them closely and see how magic and magnificient they can be. But they also are so unpredictable to photograph! You always have to find many tricks to shoot them like you want because it never goes like you wish and you need a lot of patience. 

AS:  Where do you get the inspiration for your photographs?
CV:  Depending on the subject, it can come from many old Painting Masters: Canaletto, Raphael, van Dyck and Turner, or from Master photographers like Helmut Newton, Guy Bourdin or Paolo Roversi. I see a painting or a photo that trig my imagination, and I try to translate what I feel in a picture.

AS:  Where is your favorite place to travel? 
CV:  I love being in the Nature: in the mountains because you it make you realize what and where is your place on Earth: you have to be humble and understand that you don’t have to fight against the elements, but that you should better respect and love them and make them sublime. I feel the same about seas and oceans.

AS:  When not photographing, what do you enjoy doing?
CV:  I’m always photographing! Whether I have my camera or not, my eyes are never quiet, they are always at work! More seriously, I try to travel a lot and I also spend a considerable amount of time doing research for new projects.

AS:  If you could be any animal what would it be and why?
CV:  I’m happy to be a human being, I wouldn’t be an animal, but I dream to be able, one day to photograph a white tiger, because they are so sumptuous and rare.

AS:  The cows in your photographs appear to have attitudes and to be challenging the photographer. What are you trying to convey to the viewer?
CV:  Before I start any photography with any animal I spend time with them, it’s the protocol, to see if they accept me like part of them. I often spend several hours in a pasture so that they are used to see me and let me come very close. Cows love socializing and are very peaceful, but I have to admit that some photo shoots have been quite challenging! Cows have such stunning expressions that I love to catch. I love thinking of them as models, and actually many of them love to be photographed and some even pose.




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