Daniel Marchand is one of the of the Postcard Collective’s most ardent participants. His images exude a sense of calm in a harsh climate and beauty in destruction (whether it is natural or human made). He walks through the countryside and the cities, elevating the commonplace and shedding new light on what is easily overlooked. This fall, I quizzed Daniel on his extensive number of submissions and here is some insight to his creative process.
Jacinda Russell: So much of your work indicates walking and taking note of your surroundings. Sometimes I think you are a street photographer and other times, you photograph in the manner of Lee Friedlander (specifically his relationship to the landscape). Who are your influences?
Daniel Marchand: I have always been an avid walker. As a child, I walked to school every day, regardless of the weather, even during the most severe of snowstorms. When I visit new places, I walk to discover them. When I first visited Beirut just after the civil war in 1994, I walked back to my hotel (a one hour walk) after dinner at around midnight to get a better feel of the city. This may have been crazy, but I still have memories of what I saw then. So I guess walking has made me more aware of my environment and has in some way influenced how I see and by extension how I photograph.
I could not however single out one photographer who would have had a marking influence on me. When I see a landscape, I cannot but think of Ansel Adams for the skies, but I am also very much drawn to the work of Ed Burtynsky. My landscape work is probably a mix of both styles.
Many viewers of my work have pointed out to me that there is a definite cinematic influence. This could be explained by the fact that I was attracted to cinema at a very young age. My first attempt at conceiving a scenario and starting to shoot at 18 was never completed when a close friend who was portraying the main character died in a tragic accident.