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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire

Work / Photography

Photography: Tom van Schleven captures Samuel Jackson for Esquire exquisitely

The best editorial photographers have an uncanny knack for making anyone look cool – creating cover stars out of the even the most unlikely subjects. But what do you do when your photographing probably the coolest man on the planet? That’s was the daunting challenge facing Tom van Schelven when he was commissioned by Esquire to shoot the incomparable Samuel L Jackson, but I like to imagine Tom just shrugged, stubbed a cigarette out on his tongue and casually smashed it out the park. Sam (as I call him) has an aura that leaps off the page anyway, so Tom was sensible enough to work with this presence and create a series of playful, interesting images against various monochrome patterned backgrounds. He also took a couple of ace moody shots on film he was good enough to share with us. Sweet.

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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire

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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire

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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire

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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire

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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire

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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire

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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire

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Tom van Schleven: Samuel L Jackson for Esquire