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Work / Photography

Evelyn Dragan’s joyfully ethereal photographs focus in on nonverbal details

Evelyn Dragan’s photographic portfolio spans people, places, and delicate moments. When we got in touch to ask about covering her vast body of work, she proved just how mammoth that portfolio is – she pinged over nearly 50 photos representative of her work to date. Flicking through image after image, Evelyn’s personal photographic driving force of developing “an approach that is rooted in everyday life,” became clear, through pictures of children baking cakes or a high-rise glass building towering over a city at sunset.

Working as a full-time photographer since she graduated from Hochschule Mainz’s visual communication course in 2013, Evelyn now works out of her home city of Frankfurt. Jumping between portrait and documentary projects, her portfolio features key editorial names such as Bloomberg Businessweek, Architectural Digest and Monocle, as well as publications closer to home such as Süddeutsche Zeitung Magazin. However, no matter if it’s personal or client work, Evelyn’s practice is always the same; she sees that her job is “to observe and capture my surroundings with a focus on the nonverbal and details,” as she tells us.

When out and about photographing, Evelyn’s overall intention is to tease out a narrative in her surroundings. She starts in a new location, “developing a visual way to tell a story about a person or place, finding an interesting and respectful rhythm in a series to do the subjects justice,” she explains. Once an angle is settled upon, she then begins “scanning” for the one regular motif in the photographer’s work: “light, colour and texture."

The editing process then begins post-shoot, with Evelyn admitting that “playing with the digital image has become a passion of mine.” Describing herself as “sort of a colour fetishist” the editing process is possibly the largest counterpart of the photographer’s practice believing that the act of taking photograph is “not just about documenting something but about interpreting what I see, using the camera and software as tools to create the result I envisioned.”

It’s a personal way of working that clearly works for the photographer. While she admits that her practice leans upon editing to achieve a final image she is happy with, this is hardly noticeable in the photographs. Each image crafted by Evelyn still appears like a moment she’s chanced upon, whether it’s a bird framed in the foliage of a tree, or just chefs and waiters sitting outside a restaurant having a chat and a break.

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