As a self-taught photographer, the practice itself is something deeply personal to Seth Fluker. His work is connected to his life and daily experiences, creating an honest, unstructured process of creation. In his latest exhibition, Earth People Fluker reveals his self-reflexive impulse to explore a vast range of subject matter, while creating a highly focused and personal study. From person to plant, from natural to digital, he constantly fuses topics to create something surprisingly concise and hauntingly beautiful.
Dazed Digital: There's an interesting mix between the digital and the natural in your pieces. Is this a particular theme for you and your work?
Seth Fluker: For the last couple of years I've been exploring the digital possibilities within my practice. Even though I shoot with film, I spend the majority of time analyzing my work on a computer so it felt natural to include some sort of digital imagery within this project.
DD: There's a range of different subjects, what strings all of these topics and thoughts together for you?
Seth Fluker: All these photographs are connected by my life experiences from the past three years.
DD: Could you explain about the process you go through to attain these images? Are they spontaneous or carefully planned shots?
Seth Fluker: These images were taken with consideration but not planned. For example, while working on the sequence of Earth People I thought it was important to have a photograph that represented "reflection" which I ended up finding at my friends cottage in Muskoka. Overall, alignment and personal interests are fundamental to my photographic process.
DD: The human subject in these pieces is very personal, while looking at these images I feel that they are your close friends. Is this intentional? Is there a purpose behind that?
Seth Fluker: Yes, it's definitely intentional. When taking someone's portrait I'm always studying how they move from one setting to another and asking them simple questions to build a dialogue between us. Interacting with my subject gives me time to understand how a person truly is which becomes essential when making a portrait.
DD: Your work has been described as haunting. Why do you think that is?
Seth Fluker: I think the majority of my photographs tend to focus on emotion rather than time or place.
DD: You're a self-taught photographer. How do you think this has helped or hindered your work, outlook and style as an artist?
Seth Fluker: Being self-taught definitely has it's pro's and con's but overall I'm glad I decided to go that route, it made me realize how much I love photography. Without having any structure, it was up to me to teach myself the capabilities of my camera, research the history of the medium and learn about other photographers.
DD: Do you have any particular influences (person, topic or object related) that you would like to relate to your work? What inspired you for Earth People?
Seth Fluker: Earth People was inspired by an opportunity to make a book and developed a life of it's own through the editing process.
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