Brooklyn-based artist Romain Laurent moved to New York from Annecy in France to pursue a career in photography. His newest and rather incredible project One Loop Portrait a Week stemmed from a need to branch out and start focusing on a way to stimulate his creative needs. He explains,
My idea with this project was to try to find that spark again, the kind of creative rhythm or energy that you have when you’re younger.
As photography is so instantaneous, Laurent decided to seek a way of prolonging the creative process to feel more fulfilled and stimulated when finishing the final touches. By using this ethos, he developed the idea of using looped portraits where animations are overlayed on top of the still imagery. Instead of the classic street photography we see today, Laurent’s use of GIFs injects personality and spontaneity into the pictures.
The portraits, mainly featuring the artist’s friends, are created by using still and animated elements within the same image and ensuring they are melted together with precision in order to make the final image flow and move without any glitches. The work isn’t done there; he then has to clean up the frames and use tricks to ensure the recycle point doesn’t’ ruin the illusion.
Laurent likes to improvise when shooting in this style and actively encourages the subject to feel free to do what they want to do and express themselves however they want to, “In all my work I like to play with people’s ‘wait, what?’ moment.” he says, “I feel this is a perfect medium to be silly.”
The resulting images really do bring the subject to life and gives viewers a whole new spin on the already much loved and pretty infamous moving image format, the GIF.
Click through the gallery to see more of the brilliant project:
Images: Romain Laurent