... so photographer Benoit Vandenkieboom, who is based near Liège in Belgium.
Already a while ago we discovered his photos on Flickr. And now we had the pleasure to get an interview with him and the possibility to show you some of his beautiful pictures.
Waow ! When I received the contact message I tought it was a joke. But no I’m there! My name is Benoit Vandenkieboom. I was born in Liège (Belgium) 48 years ago. I spent my early years in the beautiful Herve plateau. In the countryside among the fruit trees and animals especially cows ... I left these beautiful landscapes for the city to make my computer studies. The Job I made then 28 years now. Just a few years ago I left the city to return to the quiet of the countryside and have a daughter, now 12 years old.
Now I live near Liège Airport in an old renovated farmhouse in the small village of Roloux. I started table tennis because we must keep the form lol
My other passion is the theater. I am an actor (as amateur too) for over 20 years. I play comedy, street theater, cabaret ... An other form of art in some kind…
Have you been involved in the arts in some form other than photography?
After my studies I needed to express ideas, perhaps to leave a record of my passage on earth as prehistoric men (we can dream no ?). At this time I had hesitated between photography and illustration (artistic design). I chosed the second but quickly my friends sent me to the theater. They felt that my place was on stage to make humorous show. I did it and had a lot of fun all around the world, playing in many countries meeting a lot of interesting people of different cultures.
Seeing your remarkable work, I am curious where your creativity comes from?
I would like to thank you for contacting me in relation to my work. It is an honor because for a beginner like me it is a great motivation to continue working even more to achieve the goal I set myself, make good pictures. For now, the inspiration is more related to the moment, but I have in my head images which I hope to leave one day, when I know more about photographic techniques and editing. In fact, just look around to see lots of beautiful things and images.
As I said earlier, it tempted me for a while but I got finally got there a year and a half. I took the basics with training on the net. After that, I joined the groups and did some workshops. I started at my computer, watching youtube for hours. I posted the photos, received criticism (good or bad) and then tried to apply them ... again and again. Now I joined a club with good photographers, it’ll help I hope.
What equipment are you using now and with what did you get started? what is your favorite lens?
I replaced my canon 1000d that I bought when my daughter was born, for a 70D. I wanted a reflex with a value for money, because I did not know if I would use it or not. I did it ! After I bought the Canon 50mm 1.4 and a Sigma 105mm macro 2.8, because initially I thought to do macro photography only but ! Just a few months ago I bought a Tamron 24-70 2.8. I prefer the fixed lens as this will make me move around to find the desired image.
Can you tell us about your work flow from the point until you showcase the developed picture?
I do not prepare much to tell the truth and that's where I'd like to change. As I said above is intuitive, by chance if I can say ... inspired by the model. The main thing is to have fun !
After I work on my computer, a lot with Affinity photo and try to have the best result. I'm almost never satisfied but I try to do my best and hope that future will be better ;-)
Do you see a particular influence, be it a photographer or school on your work? Any subject that attracts you?
Not especially. There are a lot of beautiful photos circulating on networks. Obviously some are references but for me the work is still long. This is certainly due to lack of experience but I am not discouraged.
What would you say characterizes your work in comparison to other photographers?
What differentiates my work is probably that I'm in search of what I would be in your photography. I have not yet found a particular style. I have some ideas and I’m working on.
Among your works, which is your favorite and why?
At the studio, I like the chiaroscuro. This light that reveals details such as curves, lines and this in black and white. I also like the boudoir session because I think these pictures are very sensual. A woman in lingerie is something very sexy. I love black and white for its strength, contrast, simplicity and also because I'm colorblind too lol.
Tell us your funniest or most awkward photography story.
The most unpleasant, as I often work with amateur models, are the withdrawals. As I do not have much time available, it is always complicated to replace models at the last moment. So I can not always do as much as I would like ...
What would you tell a newcomer who asks for your advice on how to start?
Being a newcomer myself it's difficult to give advice. That said, I could tell you must observe, try, take slaps, try again. Sometimes you get discouraged and one day a better picture comes and goes again until the next slap. ;-) Just take pictures and pictures again…