Erik Madigan Heck is a 28 year old photographer, based in New York City, who drew us into his world of images through his color use and his simple subject matter; flowers, people, and places, all made beautiful, even extraordinary through his lens. While his work might seem fashion-focused, collaborating with designers like Mary Katrantzou, The Surrealist Ideal, Giambattista Valli, Comme des Garcons, Undercover Jun Takahashi, and his personal favorite, Ann Demeulemeester, Erik doesn’t care so much about fashion. Get a little more insight into the work of Erik Madigan Heck, and see even more on his website.
How did you get started in photography?
My mum gave me a camera when I was 14, and had me shoot landscapes every Sunday, while she painted.
Do you remember your first photo where you said to yourself ‘Hey I’m pretty good at this, this is what I want to do’?
Yes, it was a photograph of a young girl running in a park in Nolita, NYC, she was in mid air amongst a flock of birds- reminiscent of a Henri-Cartier Bresson photograph….
Film or digital?
Sinar 4×5, Cannon 35mm EOS from the 80s, and a 1st generation Cannon 5D.
What makes a great photo?
The right combination of elements colliding between the audience and the physical representation of an image.
Would you consider yourself a fashion photographer?
It seems like you get to be creative all the time, and collab with so many interesting people. Is there a difference between this kind of photography and say, commercial work? do you do commercial work?
There is no difference, ALL art is commercial work, whether its advertising fashion photography or fine-art painting, its all sellable and thus commercial. Unless you bury it underground or destroy it, its all the same.
How does photography make you feel?
A range of emotions from love to hatred.
Of all the designers you have collaborated with, who has been your favorite?
Who has been your least favorite?
I’m not saying.
Who are some of your favorite photographers?
Harry Callahan, is my one and only….
Any advices for photographers starting out? or what was the best thing someone told you about being a photographer?
A very famous Italian fashion photographer once told me “to find a different career”, because he said fashion photography was a dying medium…. it was the best advice, because it made me want it more…..
Do you think clothing help you to tell your own story, rather than telling a story with the clothing?
I don’t dwell on the clothing much.
Any reason your photos are very colorful?
Because color moves me, and moves people… I’m in love with color.
Is just being born again
Why is fashion important?
What is next for you?
Making more experimental short films on Kodak super 8mm film.