We are showcasing a new personal project by the amazing photographer friend: Andy Houghton called “Visions”. It’s dark, thinking out of the box and very interesting, just like we love it.

About Andy Houghton:
My inspiration to pick up a camera and start taking photographs came from my father, who was a passionate photographer while I was growing up in the 1980’s. He gave me my first camera and I took it everywhere with me. I have had no formal training in photography. Everything I have learned is either self-taught or from my father.

After leaving school I attended college and studied art and fashion. I have always been creative but didn’t know which direction it would lead me in. Fashion has always been a great interest of mine and fusing that passion with photography just seemed to be a natural process.

My style is quite different from the glossy images you would normally associate with fashion photography. My images have a dark and brooding atmosphere to them. I am more interested in showing a different side to the models than just taking pretty pictures. When I plan a shoot, I make sketches of the poses and locations I’m going to use. I tend to think cinematically and create short stories in my head, like I’m watching a film. It is very important that the model I’m shooting can connect to these ideas, and understand where the images are leading.

I take inspiration from scenes in movies and pictures I come across on the Internet. I merge all of these together until I have an idea that works. More often than not these ideas take on new forms as I am shooting. I am a great believer in spontaneity.

When I first began taking fashion portraits, I asked my friends to model for me. These days I work with models from various agencies both in the UK and New York. I also use the Internet for finding models, either through myspace or modelmayhem which is an amazing website for finding new faces.

I prefer working on location rather than in a studio. I think that a studio can restrict a photo shoot. You only have a small space to work with and I find that most of the images tend to look more or less the same. Working on location gives me the freedom to work the model into the scene to give the photograph more life and depth.

In the not to distant future I hope to have my own exhibition of work for people to come and see. I believe that a photograph should be seen in a frame on a wall rather than on the screen of a computer. I am also experimenting with using different tools to help me create my images and I am beginning to experiment with moving images.

Andy, tell us about your personal project:
Visions was a personal project of mine. I was reading about the Illuminati and that’s what gave me the initial inspiration. Originally the Illuminati was a name given to different religious society’s or sects because of their claim to superior enlightenment. That’s were the religious symbolism in the images came from. On further reading, the modern day interpretation of the Illuminati is a group of people who work secretly behind the scenes of governments and businesses who want to create a new world order. The shrouded faces and the image of the boy with a gun and military cap came from this theory. I decided to call the series ‘Visions’ referring to the enlightenment of the old order and the desires of the new. Another inspiration was dreams and how the mind experiences a succession of visions, sounds and emotions during sleep.

Andy made a video along with the photographic images, The video is open to interpretation. It is obvious that the boy at the beginning and end of the film is having these visions, but it is up to the viewer to decide whether he is asleep and dreaming, or seeing visions in a trance like state. I am hoping to work more in the field of moving images, as most of my photographs are cinematic in style, it seems the right direction to go in.

Here is the full editorial story of the project “VISIONS” along with the video Directed by Andy Houghton. Models – James Christmas, Adam Storr & Lewis Jamison..

For more information please check out Andy home page: http://www.flickriver.com/photos/andyhoughton/