Words by Chelsea Armitage.
We love Garth Badger. One of New Zealand’s most popular and inspiring young photographers has been a longtime friend of Remix, collaborating on some of our most beautiful photoshoots over the years. It’s been a wee while since we caught up with Garth since he’s had so much on the go.
However, we managed to stop him in his tracks to talk about his photoshoot with Lorde, his big plans for 2014 and his latest venture as photographer for the upcoming Bullet Heart Club production Daffodils.
How did 2013 end up for you? What were some of your highlights?
2013 was the best year of my career both personally and commercially. I shot for many great brands in both stills photography and video direction. Highlights would have to be working with Nike, Saatchi & Saatchi, World, Remix and so many more. Shooting musicians like Lorde, Sol3MIO, and Jamie McDell was amazing. I was also able to define further goals for my personal work so watch this space!
Tell us more about how you got into photography as a career.
I came into photography in my mid twenties and chose not to study but instead moved to New York and interned with whoever I could. I then assisted for several years with top New Zealand photographers. The whole time I never stopped taking my own images.
You have taken a lot of young photographers under your wing over the years. Why is this?
I’m extremely thankful for the people who shared their knowledge with me as I progressed through the industry and really want to give back. I also really enjoy being around enthusiastic people and helping out a young photographer that has the motivation to make their passion a career is very rewarding. I think what our industry needs is more communication especially with the business side.
What are your top tips for hopeful photographers to break into the industry?
- Shoot, shoot endlessly.
- Don’t be in a rush to shoot for clients until you are ready.
- Don’t show the world/post on the Internet everything you shoot.
- Edit your images heavily; you don’t need twenty different angles of the same model in the same pose.
- Don’t undercut to get work; you will get a bad name and other photographers will ostracize you. You won’t make much money and won’t be able to afford awesome new cameras.
Your awesome photos of Lorde have had worldwide success. What was she like to work with?
She was amazing. At the time we shot she had no images of herself out anywhere and her management booked me to do the pictures that introduced her to the world. She was fantastic to work with, she really understood that the creative process has parallels between photography and music. Even then it was obvious she would go far, not that I could have predicted how far in just twelve months!
Who has been your favourite model to date?
Model wise its Zippora Seven.
Your style is pretty distinct. What have you drawn inspiration on through the years?
Style is an interesting thing. You spend so much time trying to define a style and then once it starts to work out you spend all your time second guessing it. I think it’s evolving, at the moment I’m inspired by decay, strong confident females and shoot lunches that aren’t sushi. This will likely change next week.
How are you contributing to the upcoming Bullet Heart Club production Daffodils in March?
I shot the stills campaign and teaser video for the production. I’m also shooting visuals for during the play.
You usually work more in the realm of fashion photography. What's it like doing something a bit different?
Fashion is actually less than half of what I do so I’m quite used to variation but it’s my first stage production. I’m enjoying the collaboration with all involved, it really feels like a project where we are all coming together to make something truly different and beautiful. Seriously, go see it!
What's coming up for you in 2014?
So much! We are working on a series of television commercials for an amazing new World campaign, I’m collaborating with artists and doing an exhibition of my personal work in the middle of the year. It’s been a long time coming but I’m excited about showing the world what I find most inspiring.
For more information on Garth Badger and his portfolio visit his official website here.
And Garth insists you have to go check out Daffodils, which runs from 13th March to 29th March at Q Theatre, 305 Queen Street, Auckland.
Tickets are between $30 and $35, which you can grab at either www.qtheatre.co.nz or on 09 309 9771.