Glowing Street Portraiture: An Interview with Grégoire Terrier

For some time now, French photographer Grégoire Terrier's moved from digital to analogue with a mission in mind: to photograph like contemporary travel photographer Theo Gosselin. Grégoire Terrier's style is a balance of both planned and candid shots, merging them into unique, neon typographic-portraits. Grégoire does not only shoot in this fashion, though. He approaches the streets with cat-like cautiousness and curiosity, turning simple street shots into voyeuristic yet also non-distubing compositions.

Allow Grégoire to further introduce his artistry with this interview.

Hi Grégoire! How is your creative journey so far in photography?

I am a curious person. I pay attention to everything around me. In photography, movies (Wes Anderson), music (electronic music), architecture (minimalism) or fashion inspire me. Actually, ideas just come up, and I adapt them according to the place, the people with whom I am. Nothing is planned. Spontaneity & Composition first!

When did you start shooting in film? What drew you to the medium?

I’ve been shooting in film for 2-3 years now. I started with my compact Fujifilm X100 and then Nikon D7100. I bought my first and still favorite camera, Nikon F2, just because I wanted to shoot like Theo Gosselin! I wanted something compact, discrete and effective. I love that camera! I do not shoot in Medium Format yet. I think that I am not ready yet. I want to focus more on my composition before this step. Hasselblad 500C, I am coming.

As a street photographer, where do you usually go to 'hunt' those images?

I mainly shoot when I travel with my girlfriend. She is my first inspiration. This is why she is everywhere on my photos! Whatever the place, I only shoot when an idea comes up! It could be toilets, parcs, streets, I do not control my inspirations!

You shoot a lot of nighttime street portraits but stylized with neon elements mostly overlapping the face. May you share with us why you chose this style?

I discovered double-exposure photography on films with Louis Dazy, a French photographer. But it is Toby Harvard who got me into neon obsession. I love this dark/mysterious/dirty side of the neons.

It's a bit tricky to shoot portraits on the streets! How do you do it? What elements you usually look for?

I worked in a casting agency specialized in people with true faces. This is what I try to find. Beauty is interesting but It is more interesting when It is about beauty that disturbs! I am not afraid to stop people in the street if I have an idea. Strangers are more natural, I like it!

What inspires your creative juice?

Chicken nuggets & candies!! I am a child. From here, you can find inspiration and beauty everywhere.

If you could work or collaborate with any photographer, artist or person, dead, alive or fictional, who would it be?

I’d love working with Guy Bourdin (composition & elegance) and Martin Parr (satire). I am available guys!

Describe to us -- what's a day in the life of Grégoire Terrier?

I am still a student, so when I do not have classes, I spend my day listening to music, hanging out and parties. Nothing extraordinary, sorry ...

What do you usually do during your downtime? Any on-going project, or other plans you're keen to work on?

Since I listen to a lot of music nowadays, I started learning to mix music!

Visit Grégoire's website for more of his works.

2018-07-05 #people #street-photography #neon-photography #gregoire-terrier

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