EIGHT PHOTOGRAPHERS. EIGHT DAYS. X-PRO2.
A PROJECT PROPOSAL.
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For most of us in the collective, the X-Pro1 was our first Fujifilm workhorse, the camera that made us switch and fully embrace the X-Series. It remains to this day a machine to which we are solidly attached, one that continues to embody what X and Fujifilm stand for: the essence of photography, the melding of new and old—the pure and elemental.
In light of the upcoming successor to this beloved camera, we'd like to put forward a project for consideration : ELEMENTAL - Eight photographers. Eight days. X-Pro2.
The concept’s goal is to equate X-Pro2 with essential, with clarity and storytelling.
We propose to shoot a series of eight photo essays (one for each member of KAGE) inspired by the Five Elements (Godai) — Chi (earth), Sui (water), Ka (fire), Fū (wind) and Kū (void).
The resulting stories would be published as an ongoing series over eight days —making full use of the web and social media—ramping up to the release of the X-Pro2.
We’ve identified several goals that could be achieved through the ELEMENTAL project:
Emphasize the idea of the X-Pro2 as the ultimate reportage and storytelling camera.
By creating several visual narratives as opposed to a collection of disconnected single images, the focus squarely shifts towards reportage and reinforces the product's positioning on the market. It clearly becomes a storyteller’s tool.
Build momentum towards the X-PRO2 launch.
In terms of publishing, the approach would be similar to what Apple did with Christie Turlington for the Apple Watch launch: stories would be released over eight days to build momentum for the product launch and create anticipation.
Create promotional material.
The resulting images and stories would be available for promotional purposes and Fujifilm events.
Create opportunities for a body of work that would stand on its own.
These visual stories could become the object of a book and/or exhibition that would stand on their own, extending the promotion of the X-Pro2 way beyond the launch window.
The essays would follow the model used by our collective, a sequence of 6-9 images accompanied by a short, descriptive/literary text. Each story page would also include impressions of the X-Pro2 by the photographer.
In terms of subjects we again would follow the model we've established as a group, allowing for an interpretation of the Elemental concept in order to best represent what the camera can achieve in various environments—street, landscape, portraiture (environmental) etc... We believe the general philosophy behind the Five Elements can be a very powerful source of inspiration and supply us with a broad range of visual possibilities, from purely documentary to poetic.
We intend to bring a very strong stylistic identity and frame every essay in reportage form, in line with the camera's targeted demographic.
We founded KAGE COLLECTIVE in 2012 around a very simple concept: creating visual stories using the X-Series cameras—because of the quality but also because of their ability to blend in and make us invisible, an important part of our approach. To this day, we remain committed to this exploration in all its forms, be it documentary or fiction.
We are all Fujifilm X-Photographers and many of us have taken the stage at Fujifilm events around the world. We are also speakers and offer workshops, often solely focused on Fujifilm cameras.
We believe this project could be mutually beneficial, cementing what has been a very clear yet unofficial relationship between us even more, the way Magnum and Leica have been associated throughout the years.
Below is a video presentation of the collective that was created for the Photon festival in Spain that took place last May.
We hope you find this project as exciting as we do and look forward to hearing from you.
Please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions. This presentation is meant as a starting point and we are of course open to any suggestions and perfectly willing to discuss any further ideas you may have.
The KAGE Collective
Note: this presentation can be downloaded in PDF format here.
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