Graphis Master John Madere is an exceptional photographer who has been honored by many prestigious art and photography organizations such as The Art Directors Club, the AR 100 Show, The ARC Awards, and American Photography. He has a large plethora of clients that consist of graphic designers, global design firms including Pentagram, and corporate clients such as Chase Bank, Forbes, IBM, and many more.
His portraits are among some of his Gold-winning work in our Photography Annuals over the years. Above are his portraits for Chip Kidd and April Greiman as part of his Graphic Designer Series that he talks about in his Q&A for Journal 366.
Above are more of his featured Graphic Designer portraits including the late Milton Glaser (left) and Stefan Sagmeister (bottom, right). He names this series as one of his most memorable projects. Some excerpts are below:
What has been your most memorable project?
The ones I’ve assigned myself. My portrait series of noted graphic designers is probably my favorite since it has allowed me to meet and photograph artists whose work I greatly admire. I’ve also really enjoyed photographing portrait series of people with unusual obsessions, artists, and surfers.
My most memorable commercial assignments involve portraits and group portraits all around the world. Photographing people in many different cultures, usually in dramatic settings is a great experience.
What classifies as a “unique human moment” for you?
Although I’ve done many editorial assignments for magazines, I’m definitely not a “run and gun” or candid photojournalist. Most of my portraits are carefully planned and executed. Plenty of subjects (with the exception of celebrities and models) will start their session saying “I hate having my picture taken.” It’s the job of any good photographer to get past that. I rarely know ahead of the shoot just what it will take to do that, but I almost always solve that puzzle and manage to get a revealing portrait. That moment can occur at almost any time during a portrait session, sometimes just after I (deceptively) tell my subject that we have the shot.
John Madere has explored the many facets of human expression through his portraits and has touched many of his subjects with how he was able to bring out their character in just a few shots.
See more of his portrait photography and learn about his experiences, his view on success, and more in Journal #366, available now for pre-order.