Photographer Patrik Johäll, Car Category winner, about creating images with an experimental approach


Today we want to introduce you to Patrik Johäll, Spotlight Awards for Photographic Excellence 2018 Winner in the Car Photography Category. Read the interview below to learn more about the winning image, Patrik’s style and a few secrets.

Campaign for Volvo V90CC by Patrik Johäll | Car Category Winning Image – Spotlight Awards 2018

Production Paradise: Tell us about the winning image: the idea behind it, how was it shot?

Patrik Johäll: This image is shot in Skye, Scotland, for the launch of the new Volvo V90CC, featuring the model Fanny Fournier. The idea behind this image and a lot of other images we created for Volvo is to capture an authentic feeling, something more than just a shot of a product. We strive to find the right conditions to portray this, always using natural light.

Patrik Johäll behind the scenes

Production Paradise: How would you describe your style?

Patrik Johäll: I like to create images with an experimental approach. I like to adapt to the given conditions and turn everything into an opportunity for new possibilities with a more freestyle shooting style. I really like rough conditions more than blue skies, and always use the natural light to my advantage. And keeping with this idea of working with the natural elements in the environment, I like my subjects to be portrayed as natural as possible.

Production Paradise: How did you end up behind the lens? Tell us about your career path. 

Patrik Johäll: I started in the advertising industry, turned to Art Direction and ended up as a Creative Director who always looked at the photographer’s job as more interesting. I started my own business 15 years ago with the idea to create more things I really enjoyed. Today we are a full-service creative house with 20 employees.

Patrik Johäll

Production Paradise: What do you think is necessary to become a successful commercial photographer?

Patrik Johäll: A passion to create something visually stunning with less focus on the business behind this. I believe you need to deliver more than just an image. The goal is to develop the ideas into a narrative and to have an ability to understand the background of the concept. Listen to the client, as well as the agency, and make the best of everything.

(Don’t tell anyone, but I am actually not a photographer at all. I am a storyteller.)

Patrik Johäll behind the scenes

Production Paradise: We believe you are not resting on your laurels – what are you working on now?

Patrik Johäll: Cars, cars, more cars, and some lifestyle. I wish I had more hours at the moment, I am constantly travelling and would love to spend some more time at home with the family.

Patrik Johäll behind the scenes

Production Paradise: The Spotlight awards had a judge’s panel composed of potential clients for commercial photographers – did that influence your choice of image(s) selected for your entry? 

Patrik Johäll: Not particularly, but I guessed my entry would get the attention of some of the judges.

Production Paradise: What made you want to participate in these Awards? 

Patrik Johäll: It pushes me to actually reflect on what we are producing and find out if we are progressing in the right direction. It also helps to find some personal favorites, and having those favorites validated is always a great feeling.

We would like to thank Patrik for taking the time to share his experience with us! If you want to see more of his work, visit Member’s portfolio or website.

Production Paradise will issue a special edition of Spotlight Magazine featuring all the winners. Make sure you subscribe to our blog and Spotlight Magazine and don’t miss out!

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