Like many photographers, Gian Carlo Drueco had a nuanced appreciation of female beauty, and he devoted himself to capturing it.
You can see it in his moody portraits and his unconventional commercial work, which placed models in unusual settings that somehow amplified their energy and erotic appeal.
The Toronto-based lensman was one of Canada’s most promising young fashion photographers until his untimely death from cancer last month at age 29.
News of Gian’s sudden illness shocked the Toronto arts community, and many of the country’s leading photographers contributed prints or original works to an online auction in June to help raise money for his family. Gian’s struggle was chronicled in a detailed, heart-wrenching blog called Baby, We’ll Be Fine, written by his partner Michelle.
A native of the Philippines who moved to Canada as a child, Gian graduated from Sheridan College’s photography program.
Among his early commissions were the lookbooks for Canadian brands Michi and La Fée Verte — easily two of the most memorable lingerie campaigns coming from North American labels in the past few seasons.
In both cases — Michi’s industrial gym and LFV’s wintry cabin — Gian used an evocative setting and an underlying narrative sense to help these young Canadian labels create a compelling, original brand signature.
Below is a selection of images from Gian’s portfolio. You can see more of Gian’s work on his website where, in his brief biography, he writes: “This is the beginning of the story.”
The main image above is by Toronto photographer Markian Lozowchuk.