PHOTOGRAPHER : Cristóbal Escanilla Severino
For December’s interview session, we have chosen Cristóbal Escanilla. Based in Santiago de Chile, this 25 year old photographer and videographer manages to capture sensuality not only through the subjects he chooses, but also through the delicate, yet perfect lighting that touches them.
TS: How did you get into photography?
CE: I had the chance of having a reflex Zenit 12xp camera at home that belonged to my parents and then they bought me my first digital one right when I started college.
TS: What camera do you use? What do you think/prefer about analogue vs digital?
CE: The truth is that I use both formats ( analog / digital) and I like both. Each one has its advantages and disadvantages, but for personal work (portraits , travel) I prefer to use analog with my Hasselblad 500c and Pentax Spotmatic.
TS: How do you feel and capture sensuality?
CE: Sensuality is “something” that moves sensations. Personally I let myself go by it, especially if you have pure, subtle and romantic characters.
TS: Besides the subjects you work with, and the moments you choose, I feel that the way you use light is what gives that perfect sensual touch to your pictures. What other elements help you make a picture a sensual one?
CE: Mostly I am bound to take pictures with natural light, hoping for it to be direct sunlight from sunrise or sunset. Also, when I’m home, I complement using electric light, fillers, lens filters, among other little things that create subtle effects on the image.
TS: In most of your work you show the bodies of sublime girls, but you rarely show their faces. Is there a special reason for this ?
CE: Usually these images aim to reflect compositions of the body, which would be the main objective of the scene, and then I fill with textures, shapes and tones the final frame. I feel there is a lot of beauty in a detail of skin for example, in which falls just a small ray of light…
TS: Where do you draw the line between erotic photography and pornography?
CE: The line is drawn in the intention of the image: the body composition and in the expression of the portrayed subject. My erotic photography is very light, it does not seek to have many erotic or sexual characteristics, but rather seeks to focus more on emotions and in the composition of the image, that can generate certain feelings in the viewer, from an opening of the senses to excitement triggered by beauty.
TS: What is the relationship you have with your subjects?
CE: Only work relationship and sometimes friendship. Before taking pictures, I like to get to know the person well to be able to bring out their inner beauty and emotions.
TS: What photographers/artists have influenced your work?
CE: Several, but to name one that has consistently had my serious attention: Lukasz Wierzbowski. In general, there are many photographers from different time periods that fill me with creativity and desire to continue.
TS: Are you working on another project at the moment?
CE: I am about to launch a video that covers all the themes I have treated in my photography for about two years. I will also start selling my second Fanzine. Both projects close three years of experimentation in portraits through photography.
Check out more of Cristobal’s work here.