Photographer Maude Arsenault understands the longevity and presence of printed photography, which is why her online gallery, The Print Atelier, came to be. We got a chance to speak with Maude in Toronto – Read on to check out what The Print Atelier is all about!
Maude Arsenault has been a photographer her whole life. She has mainly done fashion photography, working for publications such as Vogue, Elle, Nylon and Flare. After having stayed in Sydney and Paris, she is not based in her hometown of Montreal. Maude has also been a collector of art photography herself for about 10 years now.
Being a collector of photography kick-started her project of The Print Atelier. Given that she’s also had many ask to buy prints from her, it clicked in her head. Why not put together all these things that she loves, including some artists that she knows, and offer a proposal to buy prints? Hence, The Print Atelier was born. In the beginning she went with her heart, looking for photographers that she admired herself: “Everything in the gallery needs to be something I would personally buy”, adding: “I’m the curator!” The whole idea of an online gallery where you can order prints brings back the anticipation of seeing beautiful images printed out on beautiful paper!
For her, one big difference of this project was the business side of things. Working with artists, finding the right people, programming, meeting people, it’s all an interesting process. And of course, decisions. Especially on how to present and produce an online gallery. The plus side though did include being able to work for herself: “As a photographer, you always wait for people to tell you how they see things, or want things or when to book you…” For Maude, The Print Atelier allowed her to be much more proactive on her own terms.
As a photographer, Maude has noticed that there is more photography today than ever, but also, as little print as ever. Maude wants to change that. Photography is becoming more democratic as everyone can do it. Photography has become so available, and this is good. A sense of loving photography as emerged and people are more and more interested in collecting and displaying on walls, which is what the Print Atelier builds off of.
When asked if she’s familiar with film, Maude answered with enthusiasm: “Yes!” She spent most of her career using film, from medium format to large format. She still uses it today in her personal work and describes that the way she shoots is as if she is shooting with film – no post-production. Do everything as you take the photo. Although she hasn’t used a Lomography camera before, she’s had much experience with the people around her using Lomography cameras. It’s never too late to start, Maude!