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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

MARKUS + INDRANI: Back To The Iconic

With a new book available, MARKUS + INDRANI have had some time to reflect on their past while exploring exciting new directions for their future

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Klinko notes that the two have been approached about publishing a volume of their work many times in the past, but they had decided to wait for the right kind of deal rather than settling for a limited-edition run from a specialized book publisher.

"We didn't want to produce a niche book," he says. "We like to bring photography to a much bigger audience."

When asked if he found any introspective moments while reviewing classic imagery from the pair for the book, Klinko says ironically that he feels he has grown the most as a photographer by learning to let go.

"I'm sometimes surprised at some of our early work and at how focused we were on the technical perfection," he says. "I think that back in those early years, we spent a great deal of interest and focus in making pictures as perfect as possible in a technical way. Our evolution is to step away from that and take things a little easier and to be a little bit more relaxed. I think that's also why these images become more applicable to fashion and editorial, they're more spontaneous, but still glamorous.

"I'm very comfortable to go to Central Park," he points out as an example, "with a little generator and a couple assistants and a light that we just wheel around the park, and then combine daylight and maybe a flash or whatever. I think 10 years ago I would have wanted a major army of assistants and huge loads of equipment. And I would really make sure that I got everything being lit under control the way that I want. If the sun was up or down, I wouldn't care. I would want to be able to light that park up right. Today, I would much rather think, 'Oh, the sun is so beautiful; maybe I don't even need a light; maybe I'm just going to use this beautiful sun and maybe a reflector and, you know, let's just see what's going to happen.' It's very liberating to have that confidence."

Indrani holding the RED EPIC; Markus wielding the "Mammoth Cam."
The team is aware of what they bring to the table and aren't too worried about most of the competition. "You can have a $200 camera and be the greatest artist and produce the most beautiful image," Klinko continues, "and you can be equipped with all the high-tech stuff—the best camera and the best lights—and be a hack. Technology is only getting better, but it doesn't get easier, and that's a very important point to make. These high-end cameras and super-high-definition digital backs, they're difficult to use perfectly. They're like a Ferrari. You have to be a pretty good driver to drive a Ferrari well, and I think you have to be a pretty good photographer to use an 80-megapixel back because it's temperamental. It's not very forgiving. That's what I love about it."

Indrani adds that she welcomes the challenge. "We have to do more meaningful work that isn't challenged by simple technological change," she explains. "I think that having the technological opening forces us to push ourselves much further and find things to distinguish ourselves as artists rather than just recording something pretty. I think it's great. I think that we're entering a new era of creative abundance, and that's a wonderful thing."

See more of MARKUS + INDRANI's work at www.markusklinko-indrani.com.


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