MARTIN COIFFIER : CINEMAGRAPH ARTIST
We started to work with Martin for FW17 and explored different ways to present "Waiting for the Sun" collection. For our Pop-up shop in Paris, Martin did an amazing video of the full collection that we were so proud to present for our Cocktail Party next to the Opera in Paris.
On the main page of our website, Martin did this amazing Cinemagraph "The dreamer" to show our "Doris" classic blouse in silk.
We wanted to introduce you this artist for you to know a little bit more about him.
Thanks Martin for your creativity and for accepting to be part of our adventure.
Q : How did you start working on cinemagraph? Is cinemagraph it a general name for this kind of art, or an invented one by yourself ?
MC : Both term and concept « Cinemagraph » were invented by two photographers in 2011, in New York. Even if by this time many people get thrilled by this new format, it didn’t launched fast because of technical issues to display cinemagraphs on the net with good quality. Instead, it had been soon assimilated to sort of new Gifs, deprecating its evident artistics potentials.
When I discovered cinemagraphs - 1,573 years ago approximately :) - it fascinated, hypnotized me. It was like a living photograph stucked into an infinitesimal lap of time. It had sort of depth, sort of mystery provoked by the combination of fixed and moving elements. A picture which move but… doesn’t, and which will never change ! I decided to learn how to do a cinemagraph - shooting a piece of video, then freezing part of the image and letting the other part moving. It’s very… delicate, because you have to think movement but not too much, and you have to build the image like a photography, which is kind of spontaneus, but with cinema technics, which are not.
Q : What was your historical artistic work before this animation passion ?
MC : I had been working for more than ten years on feature films as unit manager and assistant director, and I also directed and produced some short films. But as an artist I discovered that I preferred to express myself through photographs.To keep control on each aspect of the visual, which would be more personal and abstract in terms of researches and results. And also to play with the notion of object that the photographs have. Cinema is more considered like a consumption product. Photograph is also an object. My still photographs work is centered in large format photo compositions inspired by painting and cinema; romantism.
Beside photography I also collaborate directing theater plays sometimes. Crazy and underground stuff. To keep working on narrative stories I guess, surrounded by a creative team !!
Q : Since when do you work on Cinemagraph ?
MC : As soon as did my first cinemagraph, I started to experiment combining shooting and motion design, not only to display natural movements of the video taken, but also creating other movements related to the theme of the visual, always keeping in mind that the movements has to be integrated with a soft an dreamy endless loop. Then I digged into the « code » on the net to find a way to display this kind of visual in High Definition. There are already platforms which give some solutions but none of them do it properly on tablets, which is in my opinion essential because they are the futur of newspapers, and moving photographs are made for that ! This eventually led me to create www.stillmotiongraph.com, which is not only about creating « cinemagraphs » from short videos, but also animating still photographs, and finally combining both technics.
Q : What are your inspirations?
MC : Beside the commercial applications of moving photographs, I keep working on my researches and projects at Brussels Art Factory, the artistic pole where I’m resident since 2014. Trying to build my own bridges between photo compositions and still moving photographs, internet visuals and physical photographs…
Q : Which artists are inspiring you?
MC : The inspiration comes to me from cinema, visual art, theater, dance… Just to name a few: Photographers: Jeff Wall, Gregory Crewdson, Philip-Lorca diCorcia, Ellen Kooi, Julia Fullerton Batten. Theater: the plays of the belgian Needcompany. Cinema: PT Anderson, James Gray, Tom Tykwer, but also Dario Argento, Todd Haynes, Hitchcock… Dance: Meg Stuart. Painting: E. Hopper, Turner, Claude Lorrain, Caspar David Friedrich… Visual arts: Joanie Lemercier…
Q : Do you imagine in a near futur, Cinemagraph as our decoration painting in our home?
MC : Definitely ! I’m already working on it, as well as on very new ways of giving movement to still images. I will release some stuff very soon…
Q : Do you have time to work on your own artistic project, or most of your time is working for Brand?
MC : I try to do both but sometimes 24h a day is not enough, but I’m working hard trying to find the code to enlarge time :)
Q : Cinemagraph can work on every web platform? (instagram/ facebook/ website)
MC : Cinemagraphs, stillmotiongraphs, can work on website, social network but also on webzines which is still a format not used at 100%. But then still moving pictures are ideal for urban digital panels also…
Q : How would you explain cinemagraph is a plus compared to a regular picture for Brands?
MC : Still moving photographs give another dimensions: the time, and a certain perception of depth. It catches the eye without being agressive. And the most important: It gives to the brand the possibility to bring to the public an additional clue about the concept of the collection / the product…
Q : Are many appscoming on the market proposing this service? Is the industrialization of this art something that you have to be concerned about?
MC : Industrialization exists for every format. Sometimes brands need a « typical » visual they can find on stock images, which is fine. But in many other occasions brands need a very specific work related to one product, one collection, one season… Something that stock images can’t offer. So there’s place for both.
Q : What will be the evolution of this art in the next few years?
MC : At the beginning there were Cinemagraphs, but we are going to experience much more « still moving » formats. The videos become shorter and shorter, and the photographs need to enter into a third dimension…
Q : Do you need to be here during a photoshoot to create those animations, or we can send you pictures, and you will be able to work on it?
MC : I don’t need to be on set to animate images, but like all projects, the ideal is to build the concept before the shooting… Any combination is possible. That said, shooting cinemagraphs is like shooting photographs: many ideas can come at the shooting… We are still very few understanding the shooting technics. And also, beside the technic, there’s the creativity :)… Up to the client, and to the budget !
Q : What are the limits of Cinemagraph at this point?
MC : On the net : some technical restrictions for mobile devices yet. But soon they will be solved. For urban digital panels : none, only to wait the creatives agencies to play more with this format.
And creatively : absolutely none !... So many things can be done in this format !
DISCOVER MARTIN COIFFIER ON :
« Still motion photographs » site :