Conversing with Paul Ockleshaw was most interesting. Paul contacted us with the modest question if we could possibly interested in publishing some of his work. Taking a sneak peek in what he had to offer made us drool instantly. Now I have to admit that with all the photos we receive on daily base, drooling isn’t something we are unfamiliar with. But in Paul’s case it was for different reasons. No nudity or stunning physical highlights here. No, Paul Ockleshaw’s work is mouth watering for very different reasons. Because the moment we laid our eyes upon his art, we realized, we were witnessing pure creative genius.
Paul Ockleshaw is both photographer and fashion designer. In his initial career in fashion he worked for some of the biggest names in the industry, such as Yves Saint Laurent, Jasper Conran, Ted Baker and NEXT. His work and passion has brought him all over the globe, and Paul has settled in London, Sydney, Perth, Amsterdam and Hong Kong before returning to the UK. Not unfamiliar with the medium, Paul eventually moved into professional photography while living in Hong Kong and has been expanding his creative boundaries ever since. It is inevitable that his fashion background filters thru to his photography work. After all, Paul has 16 years of experience in fashion. And that background is probably one of the ingredients that makes his visual art to outstanding and different.
Portraits and architecture are areas of Paul Ockleshaw’s personal interest. One aspect of his passion is the solidity and structure of buildings. The other is the instability of fantasy and masculinity of the human psyche. He thrives on the creative movement between static and fluid. And since his vision is so explicit and personal, Paul masters everything himself, including make-up, heir and clothing. That his vision is not unwanted proofs the fact Paul already had the honor of several exhibitions in Australia and currently in Hong Kong.
Today’s selection contains work from 3 different sets. SCRAPPER is a black and white multi photographic series influenced by the overtly masculine sport of boxing. The primal masculinity usually found within the boxing ring is combatted within this series with visions of 'Apprehension', 'Fear', 'Anger', 'Trepidation', 'Rebellion', and 'Preparation'. The ghost-like shadows of the main images reflect the inner turmoil associated by these aforementioned emotions. PLASTIC is a high gloss color dream of frozen poses and 1980’s inspiration. Looking at 80's copies of magazines such as 'The Face' and 'iD' was a huge inspiration for this 'made up' androgynous 'look', another version of masculinity which includes the feminine side in which Paul likes to investigate.
The 3rd series is named ELFIN. As a child Paul would read fantasy and fairy stories which fed his vivid and creative imagination. This eventually fuelled his passion for sci fi and fantasy genres. Paul became an avid enthusiast. ELFIN was inspired by his own childhood, with made up characters that appeal to his own darker fantasies. Again masculinity is a focus in this series, surrounded by magic and mystery. –BM-
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