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Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu

The Graphic Novel - Comic Book Approach to Muay Thai Photography - Pap Photography

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There is a very prolific Muay Thai photographer who happens to be Thai, who has produced a very graphic effect with popping, electric colors, high definition pop, and lots of that Sweat Spay look catching dynamic moments of a fight. Here is a few squares from his instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/pap_muay_thai/

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This isn't the only style he shoots in, but for fight photography he has really pushed and explored this look. Just scrolling through his feed you can see it develop subtly, which is cool. You get that graphic novel ripping muscle thing, truly luminant figures against black backgrounds. In general I really resist the Sweat Spray look, mostly because it hides all the deeper emotions and efforts in what fighting is all about. And because it tends to be produced by machine gunning the shutter and then just picking out the best "moment" (which in itself is a process, but not something that feels good to me). That being said, it is very difficult to shoot fights. You are usually locked into only one or two positions on the ring, and its hard to get expressiveness to action. Moving toward comic book cell aesthetics has its advantages, and going in that direction his look is pretty cool. I include this here because it occupies a space on the aesthetic spectrum of what fighting is, and how to communicate it. That it is coming out of a Thai sensibility in the history of aesthetics makes it all the more interesting.

 

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