In my line of work I make it my business to know what’s happening and who is rising to the top in the plus size industry.
When I came across photographer Milton Franklyn Goedhoop, his passion for his work was clear… and then I realized he was in Amsterdam and I thought to myself – how will I ever get his work in PMM? This month he shares his creative passion on the cover of PLUS Model Magazine featuring one of MY favorite models, Sharon Dumfries.
Get to know Milton…
MADDY: I’ve been obsessed with your work for a long time. When we connected on social media one of the things I remember wanting to say to you is that I could see how much you enjoyed your work. I can see the passion and joy in what you do. Is photography what you always wanted to do?
MILTON: Not at all… I always wanted to become a filmmaker. I even had some scripts written for film and wrote a stage play. Life often brings you on a different path, but I’ve always found photography fascinating, because it has many similarities to film. But I really got into it when I met the love of my life, who also had a passion for photography. I think we motivated each other to actually make a start doing photography as a business.
The joy I get out of photography is when a non-experienced model books a session to boost her own confidence. And you see that vulnerability grow into confidence midway through the session after you showed her those first shots. That is the most satisfying thing. That’s why I love shooting portraits, to capture the beauty they don’t always see in themselves.
I had the opportunity to work with some great well known models in the industry. And I love creating new things together. With each model I shoot, I learn something new.
MADDY: We have a lot of budding/aspiring photographers reading this, what would be your top 5 tips to building your aesthetic as a photographer?
Practice, learn and practice again. You cannot practice enough. Keep shooting and experiment. When you see progress in each shoot you do, you are doing it right.
Don’t compare yourself with other photographers, watch other photographers for inspiration only. Study their techniques, but comparison is killing.
Be creative, not technical. Learn the basics of lighting and rules of photography and try to bend them. The best results come when you work out of your comfort zone.
Photograph what you love and have fun doing it. For me photography is a way to meet brilliant, creative people.
Make that connection with your model. Ask questions, get to know your model, before and during the shoot. You will see that connection in the portraits you shoot.
MADDY: I don’t know much about the plus-size industry in the Netherlands. Have you seen a significant change in the plus-size industry in your country?
MILTON: The plus-size industry in the Netherlands isn’t as big as in the U.S., but I think things are definitely changing. It’s growing, but not that fast. Sometimes just when it looks like the industry is making massive steps forward, something like, for example, the whole Nike mannequin backlash happens. So we have a long way to go and much to learn. But the best part of it all… I saw a whole body-positive community of Dutch models and influencers rise up against all the negative backlash. And I truly believe that we live in a world where everybody deserves a role model. It doesn’t matter who you are or how you look. Everybody deserves representation.
MADDY: Any plans to visit the U.S.? I’m sure you would have models lined up to work with you. 🙂
MILTON: I would love to visit New York again. I came to New York two years ago to work with a few models I met through Instagram and I loved it! It was a great experience. I worked with amazing models and made some new friends. I have nothing planned yet but I would love to return to the U.S. again.