10 minutes with Andrew Hetherington

Interviews with Photographers September 12, 2011 8:21 am

When did you first know that you wanted to be a photographer?

As a teenager in the ’80’s in Ireland I was interested in music, art, fashion & sports but wasn’t particularly good at any of them so the thoughts of making a career out of any of the fields were pipe dreams. My father was a lighting cameraman for RTE (Ireland’s national broadcasting station) and there were always motion and still camera’s in the house. It seemed a natural way too indulge my passions so I borrowed his Pentax 35mm SLR and started out shooting concerts and sporting events at school. Before long I was processing B&W film in the bathroom and waiting till night fall to draw the curtains and print in a make shift bedroom darkroom.

 

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

 

Tell me about your project ‘Doll Doctor.’ How did you first meet Slade Fiero? You got some pretty fantastic (and creepy!) images, how much time did you spend with him?

It was in fact a commission for Details so the first time I met Slade was on the shoot day. As you can imagine he was quite the character. He had totally forgot we were coming when we knocked on his door. Turned out he was actually in the process of retiring from repairing the Real Sex Dolls so the location wasn’t as visually rich as I had anticipated upon first inspection. I remember thinking we could be in trouble here because there were no dolls evident initially. But I spotted a few things here and there and as the session got going and he became comfortable he started pulling stuff out of the closets and the garage. It was a real collaboration. There were no concepts worked out in advance. Sometimes you get in a groove and it all comes together magically. I think we spent 4 or 5 hours at his house.

 

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

 

If you could go back in time 10 years ago and give yourself advice, what would it be?

 

Treat every shoot like its your first, bring the same excitement, enthusiasm, wonderment, naivety and enquiring mind every time.

 

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

Andrew Hetherington

 

Any words of wisdom for the up-and-comers?

 

Make pictures for yourself first. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing or indeed what others think. It’s a long journey that hopefully never ends….

 

(Andrew is based in New York. See more of his work, here.)

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