Excellent book design – much like design in other areas of life – often goes unnoticed, but upon closer inspection it becomes apparent that it’s an art in and of itself. Someone whose work attests to this is Gabrielle Guy, who specialises in the layout and design of art publications, and has consequently worked with some of South Africa’s most renowned artists, galleries and curators. Having eye-balled so much good art, it’s not surprising her own artistic eye is finely tuned, as showcased clearly on her (also very excellent) Instagram account.
Gabrielle has been taking photographs since she can remember. She says, “I got my first camera when I was very young, an Agfamatic 100 (it had this weird film cartridge and loose single-use flashes that you would slot onto the top of the camera). I studied graphic design, but photography was one of my favourite subjects in the course, and I used to shoot a lot of black & white 35mm film, processing and printing them myself in the darkroom.”
Often, photography is purely a visual exercise for her – she can’t help but notice grids, lines, shapes and shadows in the physical world. “But,” she notes, “there is personal expression in there too, and it’s definitely fulfilling a need to capture something when I see it.” Currently, Gabrielle is drawn to bizarre scenes highlighting the natural vs. the manmade; the odd ways in which humans impose themselves into (or onto) nature through the built environment and objects.