We're here today with Milan Tanedjikov, the founder and editor-in-chief of LIGNES DE FUITE. In this interview, Milan will take us behind the scenes of The Garden of Earthly Delights fashion editorial originally published in LIGNES DE FUITE Vol.3. We'll have the opportunity to explore the process of bringing together experienced image makers and emerging talents. Additionally, Milan will share insights into the inception of the creative vision and the collaborative efforts that breathed life into the project. We'll also learn about the talented crew involved and an exciting model casting taking place at White Walls Studio on July 29th in partnership with Society by Folio for the upcoming main fashion editorial in LIGNES DE FUITE vol. 4.
Hey Milan, can you walk us through the process of creating the main fashion editorial for LIGNES DE FUITE, with a specific focus on The Garden of Earthly Delights editorial that was originally featured in volume 3 and has now been published on the website?
We are all about providing young creatives opportunities to practice, experiment, and express their point of view alongside experienced professionals. In pursuit of this mission, I reached out to Saad, an amazing Montreal-based photographer and the founder of FACES MGMT model agency and Les Studio Vision. Through Instagram, we connected and had a great chat about LIGNES DE FUITE's vision for nurturing young creatives and the fashion scene in Montreal. I was thrilled when Saad enthusiastically agreed to join the project as the main photographer. Not only did he offer his studio space, but he also generously let us work with his talented models. In addition to his support, Saad decided to sponsor one of the annual awards presented by LIGNES DE FUITE. I am immensely grateful for the trust he placed in us, and I consider myself, Raphael Viens (LIGNES DE FUITE Vol.3 art director), and Tishanna Carnevale (our amazing fashion editor) incredibly lucky to have closely collaborated with Saad and his exceptional models.
As we dove deeper into developing the editorial, we came face-to-face with some challenges that we needed to tackle head-on. The biggest hurdle, as always, was our zero-budget situation, which pushed us to get creative and think outside the box. After careful consideration, we made the bold decision to shoot the entire editorial within just two days at Saad's studio. It was a tight timeframe, but we were up for the challenge.
Keeping these limitations in mind, Raphael and I sat down for an initial brainstorming session. We were completely caught up in the idea of sacrifice and how overcoming challenges often leads to something truly remarkable. In the midst of this passionate conversation, we stumbled upon our inspiration: Bosch's "Garden of Earthly Delights." The moral lesson conveyed in the artwork deeply resonated with us, and we decided to infuse our interpretation with a playful touch of irony and contemporary, edgy styling. Our aim was to craft a visual narrative that would captivate our audience, provoke thoughts, and stay faithful to the essence of the original masterpiece.
To make our vision a reality, we brought on board the incredibly talented Joshua Boudreau, who created an absolutely mind-blowing miniature garden set. The level of detail and creativity he poured into it was seriously off the charts. Once the set was almost ready, Saad, the rest of the team, and I gathered at LaSalle College, filled with a mix of nerves and excitement, as we presented our refined concept. Saad loved it! With his approval, we began casting models from his agency. But we didn't stop there – we also reached out to our friends, because we wanted to showcase a diverse range of characters and personalities. There are so many models who contributed to the project, and while it would be impossible to mention everyone, I want to give a special shout-out to Koko for their daring performance.
Meanwhile, Tish totally slayed it in sourcing garments, including some very rare pieces from young designers all over the world. Our collaborative effort and countless styling sessions really paid off, allowing us to perfect the scenes and bring out the absolute best in each and every look. To wrap everything up, we were in need of some nude undergarments, and that's when Kadisha, a student of mine from LaSalle College, came to the rescue. It was truly miraculous how she managed to create a stunning collection of custom-made bodysuits overnight. Her talent and dedication were simply outstanding.
Got any juicy behind-the-scenes anecdotes from the shoot day that made it a memorable experience? Share any standout moments!
Honestly, the first day of the shoot was a wild ride. We had a big group of models and a ton of looks to handle, which caused a lot of chaos and confusion. Even our talented and very experienced team of beauty artists, Dymond, Jess Cohen, and Stéphane Scotto Di Cesare, were unsure about their roles and responsibilities. It was definitely a challenging situation that required us to think on our feet and find solutions in the moment.
Despite all the chaos, our team stayed calm, cool, and focused on the task at hand. We didn't let the challenges overwhelm us. At the end of that long and intense day, we gathered for a crucial post-mortem session. It was a chance for us to openly discuss what went well, what needed improvement, and how we could better align our vision for the next day.
Those post-shoot discussions are so important because they allow us to learn from our experiences, make necessary adjustments, and ensure that we always deliver the best results. It was a valuable moment of reflection and collaboration that helped us regroup and approach the next day with renewed energy and a clearer vision.
The second day of the shoot was an absolute dream. Everything fell into place effortlessly. It was smooth sailing from start to finish, and the energy on set was incredible. The models were on fire, and Saad, Tish, Raph, and every single person involved knew exactly what they were doing. They fully embraced their roles and poured their hearts into creating outstanding results.
Oh, and here's a little happy tidbit for you – I was so thrilled with how well everything went that I took it upon myself to repaint the entire studio background that evening. I wanted it to be perfect because Saad had another client coming in the next day!
How did the editing process go, and what were the main challenges you encountered when putting together the layout for the editorial? Any cool moments or stories from that phase?
When it came to the editing stage, Raph and I carefully went through the selected pictures with Saad, working together to create a cohesive layout for the editorial. It was a collaborative effort, and we were lucky to have the talented young photographer, Vladim Vilain, on board. Together, we ensured that the images were flawlessly retouched, capturing the essence of our vision.
One of the main challenges during the editing process was seamlessly integrating our shots with Josh's incredible maquette. It required a delicate balance to merge the two elements seamlessly and create a visually captivating narrative. But with multiple rounds of feedback, continuous adjustments, and a lot of teamwork, we finally achieved perfect harmony just in time for the printing process. It was such a thrilling experience to see everything come together so beautifully.
Also, tell us a bit about how you managed such a big team of collaborators and the overall production of the project.
When you have such a large and diverse team working on a project, it's crucial to ensure that everyone receives the proper recognition for their contributions. I want to give a big shout-out to Delphine and Maria, who played vital roles in production throughout the entire project. They went above and beyond to take care of everyone involved and make sure their efforts were acknowledged and appreciated. Their dedication and attention to detail were key to the success of the editorial.
Looking back on the entire process from concept to publication, how would you describe the journey and the feeling of accomplishment as a team? It sounds like a monumental undertaking that required a lot of hard work and collaboration. Can you share any specific moments or experiences that really highlight the power of teamwork and the incredible results that came from it?
Overall, the journey from concept to publication took us a total of two months. It was an intense and demanding process. Looking back, I can honestly say that I'm incredibly proud of what we accomplished as a team. It was indeed a monumental undertaking, and no single person could have pulled it off alone. The synergy and collaboration between talented young individuals and experienced image makers were truly inspiring. Together, we pooled our skills, creativity, and passion to create something extraordinary.
This project is a testament to the power of teamwork and the potential that comes from collective effort. It's a reminder that when we come together, bringing our unique perspectives and talents to the table, we can achieve greatness. I am immensely grateful for the opportunity to work alongside such incredible individuals and witness the remarkable results of our collaboration.
We're eager to know the specific theme and crew for this year's editorial. Could you give us a sneak peek and share any exciting details?
Honestly, my situation hasn't changed much from last year. I still face the challenge of having no budget, which makes it incredibly difficult to create something significant. It can be exhausting to live the life of a struggling artist, but despite the challenges, my passion and determination remain unwavering. There's just something about taking on a project of this magnitude that exhilarates me. However, what has changed is that with each edition of LIGNES DE FUITE, I sense a growing belief and support from the Montreal creative community. It's becoming a bit easier to convince my peers that our work holds value, and as a result, we're seeing increased interest from established institutions within Montreal.
So, for this year's editorial, I reached out to Cat Nailer, whom I met while organizing events at WIP. She's now working for Folio, and I thought she might be interested in helping me out. You see, Folio represents beauty artists, and I wanted to collaborate with them on that front. But Cat went above and beyond—she introduced us to a photographer I've always admired and wanted to work with, Nicolas Blanchet. Just a week ago, we had our first creative meeting. I was thrilled to hear Nicolas speak with admiration about our project. There were others at the meeting too, like agents, managers, and another amazing experienced creative like Jay Laforest, who by the way is going to get involved with styling. It was overwhelming to see that Folio understands the importance of supporting creativity and that they want to get behind our talent incubator.
Before the meeting, I had prepared a brief. This year, I've been pondering the question, "What comes after postmodernism?" It all began when my friend and close collaborator George Fok recommended an article titled "The Dawn of Endcore" by Shumon Basar. The author discussed how we have reached the end of the postmodern era, where we deconstructed norms and taboos to pursue our neo-liberal dream. But, things haven't turned out as expected. We are faced with extreme income disparities, alarming suicide rates, increasing pollution, and even the possibility of nuclear war. It made me realize that instead of further deconstruction, maybe it's time to start rebuilding. In response to this realization, I have initiated a series of projects aimed at envisioning a positive and unified future. But to understand why this shift is necessary, we must also acknowledge and represent what we want to move away from – "the endcore" of a hyper-individualistic existence driven by the attention-focused economy of late capitalism.
In the main editorial, which I've called "LIVE," my aim is to create a fun parody of the life we live in—a nod to the end of an era. To make it happen, I've brought together an amazing team of young creatives. Arthur, the editor for LIGNES DE FUITE Vol.4, has joined in, and his ironic style adds a unique flavor to the project. Danielle Medland, an incredibly talented writer, stylist, and deep thinker, brings her skills to the table. And we can't forget MC, who has a great grasp of internet culture and a talent for styling with memes. With experienced professionals like Nico, Jay, Cat, and possibly more artists represented by Folio on board, I have no doubt that we'll create a fashion editorial that's absolutely epic.
What can you tell us about the next steps for the project? How are you planning to find volunteer models?
Regarding models, Society by Folio is conducting an open call casting on July 29 at White Wall Studio, and our entire editorial team will be present at the casting table. It's a fantastic opportunity for us to discover diverse, cool-looking individuals who can bring something unique to our shoot.
We're not limiting ourselves to any specific age, gender, race, or ethnicity. We're really looking for interesting people who have striking features and the confidence to perform in front of the camera. It's all about finding someone different, someone who stands out. Everyone who shows up at the casting will have the opportunity to be photographed, and in the week following the casting, we'll come together as a team to select the final cast.
Any specific ideas you're considering and when and where is the shoot scheduled to take place, and what kind of experience do you anticipate for the volunteers involved? Our next step is to define the direction further. I'm thinking film photography, on-location shoots, and sarcasm infused throughout. And of course, we want to feature as many designers without decontextualizing their work too much. We want them to find themselves within this world we'll be creating. The shoot itself will take place at various locations and moments, starting at the end of August and possibly continuing into the first week of September. It's going to be an incredible experience, and I hope that a lot of people show up for the casting and that they will be willing and available to volunteer for our project.
Lastly, Milan, if there's one message you'd like to send out to all fashion students, recent graduates, and young designers from Montreal, what would it be, and how can they get in touch with you to express their interest in being featured?
Well, we're in the process of sourcing talents for our upcoming main editorial, and while we already have an extensive prospects list, I'm always on the lookout for new and exciting talent to discover.
As a full-time design teacher at LaSalle College and a lecturer at École Supérieure de mode, I'm privileged to come across a lot of talented individuals. However, I'm not always aware of what's happening at every institution or self-taught designer who is creating amazing pieces, accessories, or decorative objects outside of my network. That's why I encourage anyone who feels like they have something unique to offer to reach out to us through our Instagram.
At LIGNES DE FUITE, our main goal is to provide a platform where new ideas can flourish and be refined. So if you're a fashion student, recent graduate, or young designer from Montreal and you want to showcase your work and be featured in our publication, please don't hesitate to get in touch. We're excited to hear from you and discover the incredible talents that are out there.
Images Milan Tanedjikov & Jessy Colluci Editing Gio Caci
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LIGNES DE FUITE transcends its role as a mere talent incubator, boasting a dedicated community of young creatives. It operates as a vibrant creative agency that serves as a nexus between youth culture, design, and commerce. Our primary objective is to bridge the gap between these distinct realms by facilitating collaborations and fostering synergy. If you have a project in mind that you'd like to discuss or if you require further information, we warmly encourage you to book an appointment with Milan Tanedjikov.