We had the good fortune of connecting with Duncan Dimanche and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Duncan, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
It’s one thing to be a photographer but being in charge of someone’s most important day (other than becoming parents probably) is one heck of a job. And on top of that I also shoot with 70 year old vintage radioactive Russian lens with manual focus. But it does pay off because they do have very unique flares and character to them that you don’t find in any other modern lens. And for my last wedding in France the couple LOVED the ones shot with the Russian lens and asked for my photos like them. For a wedding in Hawaii I spent 600$ on an underwater housing and bought a white dress for the bride to go in the water with it. I also had to really push the couple the day after the wedding for us to go out in the water for sunset to grab some stunning images and it was all very worth it ! The images we shot were stunning !
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I don’t have a fancy way of describing my art. But I do remember the moment I realised that that’s what I wanted to do. I was in high school in Oregon and had taken a photo of a couple that was in my high school. A few months after I was able to print out the photo in our lab and I brought it to her as a present. She was surprised by it and started crying immediately while giving me a massive hug. They had been away for a very long time now and were going through a rough patch. I understood then the power of Photography. As for my style… well it is hard to put into words someone’s style but I always try to create a strong impact while keeping everything natural. I hate seeing photos where you can tell in one second that it has been retouched. I still also shoot film because of how pure it is. No fancy sensor just a strip of thin chemical recording the rays of light. I am always trying to improve and learn and anyone who thinks that they don’t have anything else to learn from others is heading the wrong way for sure. The hardest part in this job is being able to please the clients, cause they are the one putting food on your table, while still being true to your art. And I always manage to find right balance by offering a bit of both and of course listening to their needs. And sometimes you got to put your ego aside for a few hours and get the job done.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I would first have them take a weekly bike passe for 15€ cause it is the quickest and best way to get around Paris and enjoy the scenery as you go to places. Day 1 I would bike to The Trocadero to see the Eiffel Tower for sunrise Then bike to Notre Dame long the Seine I would stop at Shakespear and Co and walk along the Pont Neuf I would eat a crepe at Breizh Cafe Then enjoy a nice summer day along the Seine Day 2 I would Go to Pere Lachaise It’s a beautiful cemetery where you can see the tombs of very famous people Édith Piaf Moliere Jim Morrison Oscar Wilde Just to name a few Then I would go to the Pavillon des Canaux for food and drinks I will then go and see a play at Theatre du Palay Royal Day 3 Visite the Catacombs in the south of Paris cause it’s a fun experience And after being underground for that long I would take him to The top of Tour Montparnass (The tallest tower in Paris) I would then eat at Chez Bebert (It’s a 30 second walk from The Tour Montparnasse) Then I would get drinks at nigh at Le perchoirs (rooftop) Day 4 I would take the car and drive to the Mont Saint Michel, which is a castle 3h away from Paris. The castle was built on a massive rock in the sea so you have to go eat low tide to get to it. We would then drive to Etretat which is an other place near the sea and it is one o my favorite places for its beautiful view Day 5 Spend the day in Etretat walking along the riffs eating mussels and fries and waffles of course. Drive back to Paris late at night to avoid traffic Day 6 I would have bought a bike tour to The Palace of Versaille which is a whole day activity and the tour guid knows when and where to go to avoid the crowds. Day 7 Would be a day spent tasting good stuff ! Starting with crepes at Sacré Coeur and eating them with the beautiful view of Paris Then Grab a Pizza for two at Jimmy 2 Fois A fried chicken Sandwich at Piou Piou not far away Then Bread and Roses for some croissant Creperie Beaubourg For a salted crepe a sweet one and a glass of cider for 12€ La Durée (for the Macarons) Capris Saint Honoré for Truffle French fries ! And Voila !!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Serge Rameli is a good friend and even a bigger inspiration. He showed me what it takes to go out and create your “lucky” shot. Alexandra Wisner is what I would call an ARTIST ! I love her music but even more so her writing. She has a way to just mesmerise and captivate my attention with her writing. And she can write about anything you can be sure that I will read it until her last word. I have never experienced that with anyone else. Daniel Kordan is MY reference now for landscape photography. He is on a whole other level of preps to get the right shot ! He will spend two to three weeks to plan a shoot for capturing ONE photo. And his way of editing is pure beauty ! No photos feels over edited and that’s what I love about his style.
For my portrait photo Kasey Orthmann is the photographer