We have enjoyed seeing Jules Victor’s photos on Instagram so we reached out to him to see if he had a collection of photos that he wanted to talk about and share with the community. All of these photos were taken through towns along the east coast and captured on 4x5, 120 and 35mm film!
Q: What got you interested in photography?
A: I was always interested in art in general. I come from a family of artists and art appreciators…I was always looking for a way to express myself and create. I first picked up my mothers Polaroid when I was maybe 8 or 9 and loved the instant gratification of seeing my photos develop immediately. Later on I started picking up 35mm disposables when on family vacations, and then I finally started taking photography classes in high school. My interest really took off when I went to Europe for the first time and had an explosion of subject matter to work with. After that I really saw what my photography could be, and started to heavily experiment with it. I eventually chose to pursue a degree in photography at Drexel University, and graduated in 2011.
Q: What type of cameras did you use when creating these photos?
A: So mostly for this body of work I am using a Toyo 4x5 field camera and for my medium format, a Hasselblad. There is some occasional work done with my 35mm Leica as well.
Q: It is nice to see the differences between your color photos vs your black and white photos. What do you like about shooting black and white? And what do you like about shooting with color film?
A: I love shooting in black and white. There is something about the quality of certain black and white films that is captivating to me aesthetically. From images shot on 4x5 you get amazing tonal separation that has an almost dream-like quality to it…I love how the right color film can provide so much detail. 4x5 Kodak Ektar 100 is my current favorite. It provides bold but realistic colors that I love, especially this time of year. Color can also help to create a narrative balance in the photograph when I have repeating shades and hues.
Q: Many of your photos seem to incorporate both the natural world along with a structure that is man-made. What about this relationship interests you enough to capture it?
A: I’ve been wrestling with this subject matter for a long time. There are images here that were taken over 10 years ago. I think a lot about our impact on the Earth and the various ways in which that can be shown. Something as simple as power lines running through a field, a radio tower in a glade or bicycle tracks in the mud. I also love to show the reverse…how finite our creations can be, and how quickly this planet can grow over us. Like a car being swallowed by vegetation or vines growing across an old house. I love playing with darker elements like time, and decay.
Q: Which photo in the series is your favorite and why?
A: My favorites are the ones from my hometown area of Conshohocken and Plymouth Meeting. Specifically though, the one of the power station/power lines and green ferns at twilight. I love the twilight hours. I love how strange and eerie normal places become at that time just after golden hour. That was one of the first photographs that I took of this type of series. It really started me on the journey of this subject matter, and it’s close to my heart personally as the area is one of which I grew up around.
Q: Do you think you will continue to build on this collection of photos? If so, is there anything you would approach differently moving forward?
A: I will absolutely be continuing this work. I’m very happy with where it has gone but it’s nowhere near done. Moving forward I’d like to explore more small towns and areas along the east coast. I’d like to get a more diverse range of areas. I want to explore how different places are changed by nature or vice versa. In the coming year I’ll be doing a lot of traveling and will be developing more work along this line. I hope to have a solo show of this work as well. Fingers crossed.