Photographer Richard Kovacs uses experimental lighting to showcase Lagos' fashion scene

Date
31 July 2018
Reading Time
2 minute read

London-based Hungarian photographer Richard Kovacs’ practice encompasses traditional fashion photography combined with some other approach or genre, resulting in work that is as distinctive as it is accomplished. “Most fashion imagery is very boring these days and many image makers are copying, consciously or unconsciously, a few of the successful trendy photographers, which is a shame,” he tells It’s Nice That. It’s this desire to do different that has propelled his recent series I Will See You in My Dreams, which combines experimental techniques, documentary and fashion photography.

A recent graduate of London College of Fashion, Richard discovered the booming sartorial scene in Lagos around a year ago. “That’s how the project came about,” he describes, “I started to discover the Lagos-based contemporary fashion designers, and I found their work very exciting, distinctive and fresh.” With the aim of showcasing this emerging scene to the rest of the world, Richard got in contact with a host of local designers, stylists and creatives. “They seemed interested in the project, so I flew over and spent a month there,” Richard explains.

I Will See You in My Dreams combines a series of shoots, all taken at under the cloak of darkness. “I did a few experimental night shoots during my studies and I really enjoyed them, something about shooting in the darkness is very exciting,” he says. The resulting images see Richard playing around with coloured gels, LED lights, torches, flashes and various light modifiers to produce a series of dramatic and striking images. Taken largely on the city’s beaches, the photographs are “mysterious, dark, high-contrast, dream-like, grainy and blurry,” all of which are aesthetic markers the photographer is keen to explore further in his work.

Richard’s experimental and impromptu photographic approach is one he developed throughout his teenage years. “I first got into photography at the age of 12, when I was given a small point and shoot camera for Christmas,” he recalls. From here, he began reading books on the medium, playing around with his latest possession. Developing a solid set of techniques in a “natural and slow” manner, he began setting up shoots with his sister who was studying fashion at the time, eventually taking the hobby more seriously from the age of 16. “I was very ambitious and managed to get some jobs while in school, which helped in shaping my way of thinking and seeing,” he explains. Now working both commercially and on self-initiated projects, Richard’s portfolio combines portraiture, street photography, documentary and fashion in a consistently stylised and distinctive methodology.

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Yummie Ogbebor, designer: Emmy Kasbit, models Tunde Soyombo at Fowler Models and Jefferey Lever

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Daniel Obasi, make up by Michael Ukponu, model Josh at DNA

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Daniel Obasi, make up by Michael Ukponu, model Anya at Isis

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Makeup by Michael Ukponu, model Modupe at Few Models

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams.

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Daniel Obasi, make up by Michael Ukponu, model Anya at Isis, earring by Shekudo

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Daniel Obasi, make up by Michael Ukponu, model Josh at DNA, top and short by Orange Culture

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Daniel Obasi, make up by Michael Ukponu, model Josh at DNA

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Daniel Obasi, make up by Michael Ukponu, model Anya at Isis and Josh at DNA

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams.

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Daniel Obasi, make up by Michael Ukponu, model Anya at Isis, dress by Andrea Iyamah, earring by Shekudo

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Richard Kovacs: I Will See You in My Dreams. Styling by Bubu Ogisi, model Michael Chima, outfit by Iamisigo

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About the Author

Ruby Boddington

Ruby joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in September 2017 after graduating from the Graphic Communication Design course at Central Saint Martins. In April 2018, she became a staff writer and in August 2019, she was made associate editor. Get in contact with Ruby about ideas you may have for long-form stories on the site.

rbd@itsnicethat.com

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