raybourn – handplant
After an extended summer vacation, I’m excited to bring you another installation of New Images, a series of interviews with photographers who are pushing the medium forward. This time around I’ll be writing a short introduction to each interview, and it couldn’t be easier to write something awesome about Patrick. For years I’ve seen his photos online and thought he was much older and well-known, but when I recently realized I’m older than him and that’s he’s just now getting the recognition he deserves I was taken aback. He’s bringing a really fresh approach to skateboarding, a subject that too often gets stuck using the same conventions. His innovative use of lighting and willingness to break the “rules” set his photos apart as something worth checking out even if you don’t skate.
What’s your name, age and where are you from?
My name is Patrick Driscoll. I’m 21, and I’m from Nowhere, USA.
You’ve been shooting skate photos from a pretty young age and come a long way since then, how did you get into shooting and what were some influences on your progression?
I got into shooting skateboarding photos at a pretty early age. It began when I started filming my friends skateboard when I was about 10. They both were much better than me, so I kinda hung around and filmed them do their stuff, which normally by that time it was too dark for me to skate. I really liked watching the videos I shot, and that translated into photography a few years later. I am heavily influenced by Gaberman and Pommier. They both have skateboarding images that transcend the genre and can really be appreciated by anyone. There’s a lot of skateboard photographers out there who are all about getting low and close with a fisheye to shoot a raw trick on a raw rail. While I appreciate that kind of work, it just has never really applied to me or what I think about skateboarding.
What’s the story behind the title of your recent series “Airplane Mode”? Can you offer any explanation for the shenanigans depicted in the series?
The title came along while we were in the RV, bullshitting around. I like the concept of airplane mode on a phone. It’s kind of like a way to bow out of being connected at all times and enjoy what/who isn’t on your screen. I also like the fact that nobody at all ever uses the mode. You pay a lot of money to be connected at all times, and airplane mode almost exists as a type of panic room option. The series however is what one can imagine from a typical skate trip. There was a lot of skating, a lot of booze, and a lot of playing around with BB guns. I had just met a few of those guys on that trip, and they were great to travel with.
You were talking a few weeks ago about the not so fun parts of trying to “make it” in the world of skate photography. What’s your take on the state of the industry?
There’s a slew of positives and negatives when it comes to working in mostly any industry. I don’t believe I was being overly negative about it, but if I was, please forgive me. It’s a great group of people that are all connected by instinctual desires to skateboard. The business side can be a little rough at times, because there’s a good mix of people who have schooling history and some with just high school diplomas or less. All in all, it’s a good place to be for someone like me right now.
What do you ultimately want to do with your photography?
I’d like to continue to photograph, forever. I’m working on more promo material to send out right now, to non skate clients. I’d like to maybe work with a gallery one day. Maybe self publish some work.
How important is instagram to you?
Instagram is pretty funny. I like to see pretty girls on there. Next time you’re on there, click News>Following and see all of the photos your friends are liking. 9 times out of 10 it will be a girl with big boobs or some skateboarding person/item.
A lot of your non-skating subjects seem to be somewhat random, why do you choose to take photos of certain inanimate objects?
The still life stuff is a bit of an exploration of color and shape. I’m working on a series right now that’ll be pretty comprehensive and long. It’ll consist of images from the past 2-3 years.
Last words/shout-outs/thank yous?
First off, gotta promote Worship Friendship (WoFr). I’ve seen first hand all of the work Jackson’s put in. He’s my bro for life. I’d like to thank Ryan Allan and Scott Pommier… my two favorite Canadians that have done more for me than I can really thank them for. Also gotta say something for my friend Ian Barry who recently just passed away two days ago. Ian was an awesome guy who was hard not to smile with when you were around him. Rest in peace poods!