THE GREAT CHICAGO FIRE IN 1871 LEFT ABOUT A THIRD OF THE CITY IN ASHES. IT WAS A DEVASTATING MOMENT FOR THE THEN FASTEST GROWING CITY IN THE WORLD. BUT THE INHABITANTS OF THE WINDY CITY BRAVELY PICKED UP THE PIECES OF THEIR LIVES AND THEIR GREAT CITY AND STARTED REBUILDING. AFTER ALL, LIVING IN A CITY THAT IS PESTERED BY COLD, WINDY AND SNOWY WINTERS MAKES YOU A SURVIVOR. AND SO THE CITY RAPIDLY STARTED TO RISE FROM ITS ASHES ONCE AGAIN. LITERALLY, BECAUSE CHICAGO WAS THE FIRST CITY IN THE WORLD TO REACH INTO THE SKIES WITH A 42-STORY BUILDING: THE WORLD’S FIRST SKYSCRAPER.
Currently Chicago is home to approximately 3,7 million inhabitants. Dave Ouano is one of them. Completely self-taught, Dave has built himself a successful career as photographer and has been making name for himself by shooting club and event photos for magazines and papers such as Windy City Times, ChicagoPride.com, GoGuide and Nightspots for over 18 years. A period in which his work of course not went unnoticed. The visibility he gained with those many publications, landed him many corporate and commercial assignments and clients, and Dave Ouano is now a well sought-after photographer for many local businesses as well as fashion editorials. This month Fashion Chicago Magazine will feature one of his latest editorials.
The story of the fallen angel has been used and described in many ways. But if there ever was such an event, we tend to believe it must have happened in Chicago. The city is known for its ghastly winds and so it seems logical that nothing but a bird or a jet driven plane would manage to stay in the sky. Certainly no angel. The classic fallen angle theme is also the main source of inspiration for Dave Ouano’s movement and jumping series. Trying to defy gravity and allowing the human form to separate from Earth, even if it is for just a moment, has driven Dave to compose a wonderful gallery of images of models, actors and dancers in several stages of airborne positions. Like fallen angels desperately trying to climb back into the skies. Since these are by definition no positions you can stay in for longer than a split second, you can imagine the skill and timing sensitivity necessary to create such a portfolio. Impressive is the first word that comes to mind.
Dave Ouano loves to work with dancers or just individuals who can move well, are fearless and can express emotion through their body movement, energy and facial expression (or the lack of it). Whether it truly is driven by the fact he lives in the Windy City or not, Dave believes it can be invigorating to defy gravity whenever possible, where most of us go through life always connected to the ground. It is this way of working that injects so much personality and charm into Dave Ouano’s original work. It really does say a lot about Dave’s way of thinking. Unlimited and reaching for the stars. Visionary. Exactly as his fellow Chicagoans have always done. –BM-
DAVE OUANO | BEAUTIFULMAG