I was watching Sky News at the gym the other day. They covered a story of inmates graduating, rising above their past offences and failures and making the most of their time in prison to study University degrees — Masters in Psychology, degrees in Economics & Science.
It made me think of how our failures and mistakes make our stories that much more interesting. We’ve got a tendency to hide our flaws, and if we can’t hide or ignore it, we like to disguise it under a good-looking cover of something.
I’ve been for 12 interviews this year, and one of my reflections from these interviews is that I got a fluency in telling my own career story over and over. Each time I told it a little different, and around interview 10 or 11 I realised that there’s a very good part of this story that I haven’t told a lot of people, or at least not out here on the internet.
So here’s my confession, (and a great story).
I am Adri Stadt.
In 2011 I moved back to Cape Town, South Africa, after living abroad for a couple of years. I spent 2 years in the UK, then 2 in Mexico and finally I squeezed in 3 months (& 1 break-up) in Berlin. When I moved back to Cape Town I moved into a beautiful flat in Seapoint, and got in touch with some of my old University friends, one of them happen to have a men’s fashion blog, Polaroids on Sidewalks, and together we decided that I’ll do a shoot for the blog, at my Seapoint flat. I wanted to establish myself as a photographer, but didn’t really see fashion as my genre. I considered, and still consider myself a Documentary Photographer, so I decided I’ll do the shoot for his blog, but change my name, because I like to compartmentalise and keep things in neat boxes.
So I became Adri Stadt.
I was sitting in Paris with one of my best friends from University earlier this year, she’s one of the most incredible fashion & beauty photographers out there and you should definitely follow her work. We were talking about our mutual friend and his men’s blog, and mostly about this impromptu shoot I did for him in 2011, and how bad the images were. For some reason Mail Celeb News and every other men’s blog, Pinterest board & Tumblr site loved it, and my shoot went viral for all the wrong reasons, especially the sitting in the kitchen with the kitchen towel pic. I could’ve been famous.
Amazing photographer Adri Stadt.
After much laughter, and cringing, I decided to own up for being the creator of these images. So, without any further adieu, I present to you Nic Pletts, as shot by Adri Stadt. He’s a really, really famous model now, perhaps these images helped to kickstart his career? (I doubt it though.)