Off the Clock 2023 Best of Show Winner: Matt Sayles

Fri 21st Jul, 2023

Posted by Polly Gaillard

Image ©Matt Sayles, 2023 Off the Clock Best of Show winning image

Can you tell us what inspired your winning image from Off the Clock and how it was created?

It was shot in my home studio one day. There wasn't a particular inspiration going in other than to create and explore as a team using flowers and other florals in various ways.

You've described the image as experimental and collaborative; how so?

It was collaborative in how we made the image. The model, the makeup artist, and myself all collaborated to create a set of images we loved. The experimentation came as I was revisiting the image one day, exploring color treatments, and allowing myself to try new things. I was exploring and experimenting until I arrived at this final result.

Image ©Matt Sayles

It appears very different than much of your work. Is this a new direction for you, a break from your personal and celebrity work? Is this the beginning of the series?

This was an all-new type of work for me. I typically keep a classic feel to my images, so this deviation was significant from the personal work I usually create.

Does your personal work mirror your commercial portrait/celebrity work, or is it an extension of it? How so?

I want my personal work to be an extension or a guide of where I want my commercial work to go. My personal work centers on people, groups, and stories that I feel are not seen enough in the media. This is the type of work I try to create personally and the type of commercial work I hope to do for clients.

Image ©Matt Sayles

You seem to focus on females and the female form ­– what would you like the viewer to take away from your personal projects?

My work on the female form is one of the most essential parts of my personal work. I grew up loving and admiring 90s fashion, and I wanted to create work that built on the aesthetic that I loved but did so in a much more inclusive way. I believe that all people should see their bodies as works of art regardless of size and shape, so I have tried and continue to try to create beautiful and stunning images that allow all women to see themselves as art. I want the viewer to see themselves in my work and therefore see themselves as art too.

Image ©Matt Sayles

You've stated that you're trying to create a more inclusive image of beauty. Can you tell us how you do that?

I do that by working with models of all shapes and sizes and making work that allows more people to be represented. The more people that are represented, the more inclusive what we see as beautiful will be. The point is representation, and through representation, hopefully, change.

Matt Sayles is a portrait and commercial photographer and director based in Los Angeles. Matt focuses his work on creating images that reflect a more inclusive image of beauty and highlighting stories of underrepresented people and communities. Matt is a graduate of Stanford University and the UCLA Anderson School of Management. He currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife, two sons, and two dogs, Storm and Stanford.




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