A chat with Patrick Fraser

If you get a chance to talk with famed photographer Patrick Fraser, you can ask him about his Vanity Fair work or his upcoming trip to Cannes to photograph Javier Bardem for a magazine out of Paris.

But to see him really light up, ask him about his personal work. While he clearly loves his job and will gladly chat about his recent shoots or album covers, he is working his way into the art world by expressing his deeper side. A newcomer to the Venice Art Walk & Auctions this year, Fraser let me invade his studio for a morning, peer into folders, watch upcoming video projects unfold, and pepper him with questions.

I asked him about the balance between his more personal art, which is currently focused on “slices of life,” and his commercial side.

“My dad had a darkroom when I was growing up,” he explains in his distinctly British accent.  “As a 12-year old kid, my hobby was to develop black-and-white photographs.”

To him, photography — whether commercial or personal — is always art. He tries to stay true to the subjects and lately has been fascinated with the more abstract line between artificial and natural.

This is definitely a studio to see this year. It’s just a one-room space with a skylight,  but Fraser is plotting some ways to make it an interactive experience. Plus he’ll be selling limited-edition prints of his work.

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