Mathew Guido turns 22 years-old tomorrow, but the young photographer has already developed an expert eye for evoking raw emotion via contrasts, colors and vivid imagination. Mathew understudied with David LaChapelle and is presently represented by ArtHouse. His unique style infuses a love for Japanese cartoons and anime.
Mathew’s shots differ from many artists in that his work tends to fall on the moodier side of fashion photography. Never straying far from his artistic roots, Mathew also dabbles in illustration, painting and video production. In our recent interview, here’s what the young photographer talent had to share about his style and technique.
How did you come to photography as a profession?
Originally I started in art with illustration and painting. I came to photography as a new form of painting. I started playing around with it shooting for my friends and when I was traveling and I got a good response, so I followed up with it. I interned with David LaChapelle, which gave me a good momentum.
How would you define or describe your photography style?
My style is very important to me, and I try to present my work in a certain way. My work is influenced somewhat by my love for Japanese cartoons and illustrations. I often exaggerate in composition, color and mood, which tends to unite everything in one appeal. I try to stress highlights and shadows, which can bring out a different kind of beauty.
What’s it like working with ArtHouse and NYC FotoWorks?
Attending the NYC FotoWorks event in New York, I can say that it gave me the opportunity to speak with so many editors, and I realized I was going back to Toronto with educated opinions. It prompted me to see where I could fit and go for it. I urge every photographer seeking direction, guidence and clarity to attend this event. It changed my career. And in just the past few months, I got signed with an amazing agency, ArtHouse.
I know you’ve worked with Adidas. How does working with the world’s second-largest sportswear company differ from high fashion shoots?
It’s funny. On a fashion set you can spend a whole hour on a single piece of hair. With Adidas you can spend just as much time over one shoelace. It’s the same process but has a different feel. I like working with big corporations, though the artistic outlet can be somewhat different.
The colors that come to light in your shots seem to provide a certain frame of mind for the viewers. What are you thinking when you focus in on certain colors?
I try to bring out the depth in colors. If it’s red, I choose rich tones. This tends to trigger and evoke emotion differently. It brings out a certain depth in shots.
Your photos seem to create a very definite mood. I don’t want to say dark, but they seem to evoke a strong emotion. How do you capture this effect?
I set out to evoke a certain emotion, but I’m also open to evolve. This tends to make things a bit moodier, and it usually means stronger colors and contrasts. The moodier shots touch people differently. Before my shoots I speak with models and explain to them what I’m thinking, so they’ll know.
Who are a few photography icons whose work you admire?
Miles Aldridge, Steven Klein and Tim Walker. I love them all for different reasons.
It seems that there’s art infused within your photos. I also read that you have a love for Japanese art and anime, which was with you as a child. What inspires your work?
I’m inspired by anime, Japanese art and life experiences. I never looked at other photographers. It’s a different market in Toronto; there’s not as much moody photography, so I try and fill that gap.
Do you have any favorite hobbies or pastimes?
I got into video, but I haven’t had enough time for it. I do painting and illustrations. I’m also kind of a nerd and I’m into anime and Japanese cartoons.