Wednesday, June 13, 2007
Markus Klinko & Indrani - Galactic Fashion
The collaborative team of Markus Klinko & Indrani does glamour and fashion with a special edge
Partners in life as well as creativity are rare indeed. There are plenty of examples where one person focuses on the creative work while the other half of the team handles the financial and promotional side. Markus Klinko and Indrani are a unique team in which both partners drive the creativity of their projects, culminating in cutting-edge imagery that's evocative and dynamic.
When Markus Klinko was relatively new to the fast-paced world of fashion photography, he met Indrani, who as an established model helped guide him through it. The partnership was strong from the outset and grew stronger. That was some 10 years and countless shoots ago. Like all notable creative partnerships, this one is built on a certain amount of conflict. The process of creativity is seldom smooth and calm. More often, its hallmarks are frenetic leaps forward following periods of contention and reflection. Klinko and Indrani are opposites whose collaborations are full of the kind of positive conflict that builds provocative results.
At a glance, the images created by Klinko and Indrani have both a completely natural and a slightly surreal look to them; the glamour of perfection comes through. The pair has embraced digital technology as a tool that enables them to achieve an ideal flawlessness in their photography. Shooting with Mamiya medium-format bodies and Leaf digital backs, they have extremely high-resolution files to work with, much like a master sculptor works with a large piece of marble.
Klinko and Indrani don't make an attempt to produce images that conceal the use of digital manipulation. On the contrary, the photographs they create idealize their subjects to the degree that they're elevated beyond the look of what's possible in reality. Klinko and Indrani create a stylized and idealized vision of beauty that simply doesn't exist in the real world.
The use of the computer and Photoshop is consistent across the scope of their work. Just about every image now receives some kind of manipulation and that manipulation often creates a similar look at some base level. No matter what the model looks like—black, white or Asian, male or female, young or old—the images have recognizable similarities. Poses seem familiar, the color palette stays consistent, and there's an underlying dynamic quality in all of the photographs. But all of this is achieved without the images looking at all redundant. It's simply a matter of visual style, and Klinko and Indrani's sense of style is beyond reproach.
Although digital manipulation is considerable, it's not the kind of manipulation that draws undue attention to itself. There are no bizarre-world effects created. One of the key aspects to this kind of image creation is the previsualization of the postproduction manipulation. When they're shooting, Klinko and Indrani already have a clear idea of what they will be doing in the computer down the workflow line. Photographs aren't corrected in post. Rather, post is a preconceived aspect of the entire project.
Complete previsualization of a project doesn't mean that they rigidly follow every plan without exception, of course. On the contrary, having the image completely previsualized allows Klinko and Indrani to make adjustments as they go. Like master craftsmen, their intimate knowledge of how to use their tools gives them an ability to make changes as the situation dictates.