Todays 2 Cents Profile is the lovely and talented Joel Devereux - a local photographer here in Brisbane Australia.
Joel is wonderfully talented and has exhibited here in Brisbane. His photography spans everything from the hot nude male through to the glamorous and gorgeous world of cabaret and burlesque.
Please make Joel feel welcome and enjoy his profile and awesome art.
(2CW) Welcome to 2CWDU Joel. For the benefit of our readers please introduce yourself and what you do.
Hello! I am 22 years of age and I currently operate as a freelance photographer, visual artist, and burlesque producer in Brisbane, Australia. I’m highly interested in the world of creative portraiture and burlesque, which form most of my personal portfolio.
(2CW) What first sparked your interest in photography?
I used to be a painter, and then I moved onto more sculptural works and wearable art. To document these, I needed to photograph them, so that’s when I first started shooting with purpose. In 2012 I studied a photomedia unit at university that re-ignited that interest, and then started to move amongst the burlesque circles around that time too, then as a producer in the scene. That lead me to start photographing local burlesque dancers and it’s very busy for me ever since!
(2CW) What is it about the medium of photography that excites you?
I always painted in a realistic style, so I like the realism aspect of photography. I always painted people, never landscapes or still life, much like I always photograph people. My brain tends to work too quickly for its own good, and I like with photography that I can pump out a bunch of concepts in such a relatively short period of time compared to a painting, and that was a huge motivator for changing mediums. I’m impatient when it comes to my own creative process.
(2CW) You have a pretty broad range of subjects in your photography. Describe some of your subjects for us.
I love working with performers and people with a lot of character, and I have little interest in capturing traditional fashion models as such. I came up through the burlesque scene, which is full of strong and highly inventive women who have inspired my career quite a bit. My subjects range from curvy burlesque artists, to drag queens, bodybuilders, and husky bearded men. I enjoy collaborating with people who are dedicated to their craft and have worked hard to where they are today.
(2CW) Is there a particular genre of shoot that is your favourite?
I enjoy getting messy on a shoot with paint and other textural materials. I’m developing a more cross-media approach to some of my work that I plan on exploring more in the future. I recently did a full body glitter shoot that was insanely messy and difficult to orchestrate, but it was really well received which was pleasant. So at the moment anything textural is my favourite genre to shoot! But it’s forever changing when I discover new things.
(2CW) How do you find your models? Or do models find you?
A lot of my models are friends of friends or through instagram. It’s about 50/50 when it comes to me approaching models, or them coming to me. I don’t have the capacity to photograph everyone who applies to shoot with me, but I can always be hired for personal shoots. Models can come from anywhere!
(2CW) Any experiences of models behaving badly? J
Mostly my models I work with (well, continually work with) are very well behaved and we are often friends behind the lens. I haven’t had any real horror stories apart from a few models who have shown up to a shoot drunk & disorientated, or one who just had an awful and unreasonably mistrusting attitude about the whole thing. For the most part I only like to work with lovely people so I’ve developed a pretty good judge of character by now. My pet hate is when anyone uses photo filters on any of my content. That doesn’t make me very happy.
(2CW) Have you had a shoot just implode and did you have to just stop it? Or was it salvageable?
From memory I’ve never cancelled a shoot halfway through. I’ve had shoots where I simply haven’t been feeling the concept and have gone in unprepared though. Everything is salvageable to a degree unless someone is injured, whether I’m happy with the end product is another story!
(2CW) Are models usually well behaved?
Yes as I mentioned before, most people are lovely to work with.
(2CW) How do you plan a shoot? Is it driven by the model or do you have a plan for your shoots before the model shows up?
I often just do basic studio shoots with a lot of models that don’t require a great deal of planning. For anything more conceptual, I do plan it out usually weeks in advance and then scout/select models which suit the specific concept.
(2CW) Who is easier to shoot? Males or females or is this a silly question lol?
It’s very subjective. I think it’s down to experience and attitude, not gender.
(2CW) You have shot nudes. Does a nude shoot differ from others and, if so, how?
I rarely shoot frontal nudes as I have little use for them unless a particular commission or exhibition demands it. However, that being said, I’ve started doing a few more and I can definitely say that my nude work is always the most popular amongst people who follow my networks. Process wise, it’s very much the same as a regular shoot. Between photography and burlesque, most people in my life are naked to some degree all of the time so it’s not really anything out of the blue for me to be around. With Facebook and Instagram’s ridiculous rules regarding female toplessness in particular, I still have to censor a lot of my more revealing work.
(2CW) I imagine that patience is a key thing for photographers, yes?
It can be. I work very quickly when I shoot so other things that take time such as makeup and hair, I’m not particularly phased with. I’m impatient with my creative process, but not at all with my shoot process.
(2CW) You have also done shoots in both Sydney and Melbourne. Are interstate models/customers different from the local models/customers in Brisbane?
If so how?
Not particularly. The vast majority of my interstate work is for burlesque artists. I’m mostly known amongst that community so I’m quite fortunate to have clients in most states that I visit so I can make the trip more worthwhile.
(2CW) Any outrageous request for a shoot and can you share a few?
I haven’t had anything too outrageous unfortunately! People tend to stick with work similar to what I’ve already done in the past. Usually it’s me approaching models with outrageous requests and such.
(2CW) You exhibited this year in Brisbane. Tell me about that showing and how it went.
I was the featured visual artist for the MELT Festival hosted by Brisbane Powerhouse. I presented HYDRA, which was an alternative vision of isolated masculinity. It was very well received which was a nice feeling. I become extremely self-conscious around an exhibition space full of my work, so that was something of a new sensation. I was also presenting work that I had photographed 6-7 months prior as ‘new’ to the public, when I think I was in a completely different creative frame of mind when the exhibition opening came around.
(2CW) How did it differ to previous exhibits?
It was my first solo exhibition so that was an experience for me.
(2CW) How much preparation goes into an exhibit? Do you, for example, plan an exhibit from a group of shots, or do you plan shoots for that particular exhibit?
I accompanied the exhibition with a book, so the exhibition itself didn’t take up that much time in the grand scheme of things. The exhibition idea stemmed from the book concept, so many of the shots omitted from the exhibition can be found in the book. I shoot specifically for individual exhibitions.
(2CW) Anything planned exhibit wise in the future you can tell us about?
At this point, I have no plans for any exhibitions in the near future… but that could change at any point!
(2CW) Some of the men you photograph are just absolutely … um….. gorgeous and delicious and sexy and hot (too much?). Is that ever distracting lol?
My work doesn’t really come from a place of sexual desire and I don’t consider the vast majority of my work deliberately sexual. I’m not opposed to people interpreting my work in different ways; I just don’t like it being reduced to coming from a place of sexual intention as such. Photo shoots aren’t very sexy places at all either, but I suppose that’s part of the illusion I allegedly create!
(2CW) You photograph in both colour and B&W. Is there a different technique to photographing the two? Or does it have to do with the look of the shot? Why colour sometimes and why B&W?
I’m a huge fan of B&W it’s no secret. I shoot everything in colour and convert to B&W in post-production. It just gives you more processing options shooting in colour. I tend to enjoy more shadows in my B&W work, whereas less so in my colourful work. My work with burlesque tends to be more colourful too, whereas I like my boys in B&W!
(2CW) You also are a photographer on the gay scene here in Brisbane. What’s that like?
I’m enjoying it! I’ve only very recently started doing social photography and it’s a good experience so far. You get to know the people who are there every week and it becomes a little sober party for me, as I don’t like to drink when I have my gear.
(2CW) Okay – for the photography keen readers I have – and I have a few – can you tell them what your camera currently is?
I currently shoot with a Nikon d610 and I’m potentially looking to make a small upgrade in the future. I also tend to shoot with prime lenses over zooms. I love the Sigma Art Series.
(2CW) If people wanted to purchase any of your photos, how would they do that and do you have art for sale?
I can be booked for personal shoots via www.joeldevereux.com and my book HYDRA is also available there. I currently do not have any prints for sale.
(2CW) Now for the 2 Cents Quickies……
I’m a big white wine boy. New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc or Pino Grigio!
Anything Japanese. In particular Okonomiyaki or ramen.
Favourite style of music/artist…
I’m very into Björk, Lana Del Rey, Marina & The Diamonds, Lady Gaga, Janelle Monae, Robyn, and other popular alternative pop artists.
La Vie En Rose is my favourite film.
Day or Night person…
I’m far more creative at night.
Fave Sunday Morning Activity…
I’m usually working or asleep! If I’m not, I’m photographing.
Sweet or Savoury…
Definitely sweet, but I love all food.
What sort of man do you like…
Someone with interests and ambition, who can hold their own in a social setting. Otherwise, no real other criteria... that I’m wiling to share… ;)
(2CW) Joel thank you so much for your time. This was a spur of the moment request and I’m so grateful for you for spending some time here at 2CWDU with us.
I wish you all the success with your career.
Thank you very much for having me!
OK Folks. I hope you enjoyed this as much as I did.
Enjoy Joel's amazing art and watch this space for more of it.