Vincent Coupeau – a Parisian local and Witchcraft skateboards rider, Vincent’s photos don’t exactly reflect what you might have expected them to look like from watching him skate. On a board he has quite a aggressive, I guess you could say ‘hesh’ style of skating: punk rock, pulled up socks and slappies. However his photos are quite gentle and reflective, demonstrating great examples of black and white skate photos, among a Parisian setting. Here are some of Vincent’s responses in his interview from our photo issue (no.118):
You still do film photography, why this choice?
Because the final result is definitely better on film for black & white in my opinion. It’s also a different way of approaching photography. With film, you really concentrate; you look for the right angle with your eyes first instead of shooting 20 picture and checking the result on your small screen. i feel like it’s closer to reality, less mechanical…But you should know that recently I started digital and colour, mainly because I had no other choice; the pictures had to be sent off rapidly. And moreover, the cost of film is getting hard to bare…
I know you’re as good on a skateboard as some of the people you shoot. Isn’t it too frustrating when you are on a spot and would like to skate but have to shoot photos instead of skating?
That’s the whole problem…And I think the worst part for me is that I never see photos of myself. I always see people quite happy to see themselves in the pictures I shoot, for the memory it brings back to them, and I would really like to experience that feeling too, but it almost never happens. But still, I’m not complaining; I’m very happy with what I shoot and that’s what matters most.”
Vincent seems to have his head screwed on pretty well. Although it is a sad thing to admit, film photography (while looking far better and more real) is quite an expensive pursuit. As he has his photos published and used, using digital is more practical for him. Although he may seem a little bit bummed out that he doesn’t really have all that many photos shot of him, at least he can consent to enjoying being a photographer and a skater, even if it means not always having evidence of what he’s done on a board.