The Fall: a photographic project on the edge of a cliff

The Fall is based on an original idea by Philippe Lauer. This is a cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz, French Alps.

Discover The Fall, an impressive shoot in a mountainous area

A very beautiful photographic project led by Phillippe Lauer, surrounded by a very efficient team

“I envisioned something impressive, a dramatic shot, but all had to be done while respecting health and safety measures.” – Philippe Lauer

In the following video, Philippe Lauer and his team talks about this photographic project.

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It took a lot of courage and confidence for Cécile to let herself go above this majestic cliff in Avoriaz.

The Fall - Photo Simon Cloutier

The Fall project

A friend of mine from a magazine asked me one day if we could collaborate and do something that came out of the ordinary. Something incredible, something that has rarely been seen. Of course, I immediately accepted.

At this point, my mind was full of ideas. The year before, I had seen and met a motocross star jumping from a cliff. At that time, I thought to myself that I had to do something on this incredible sight. I wanted to challenge the artistic side with the technical side of photography.

The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz

That year before, I had met with an incredible individual who was highly trained and qualified. I was certain that Raphael would follow me. We agreed on what image I was expecting, as well as discussed all the necessary measures to achieve this whilst keeping the model safe. We often imagine things which are difficult to realize, but at this point everything was clear, and I knew where I was going.

Cecile - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps

I envisioned something impressive, a dramatic shot, but all had to be done while respecting health and safety measures.

The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps

I got in contact with Cecile, who didn’t hesitate to give me the go ahead straight away. Whilst I was explaining how the sequence would unfold, I felt her excitement grow, as if she was searching for this adrenaline rush. We had to agree on how we could proceed safely to the Chute, bearing in mind there will be a 300 meters gap under the cliff and the model will held by a simple piece of cord.

The Fall - Photo Simon Cloutier

It was not easy to concentrate on taking a perfect shot with all this gap beneath you. The model was very courageous and she immediately what I was expecting from her.

The Fall - Photo Philippe Lauer

But we had the most stunning weather at the time of the shoot. The temperatures were soaring hot and the light was harsh. After discussing how the day of the shooting would develop, we were all aware that any risks at the time had to be carefully measured, as there was no way we would put anyone in any kind of danger.

Godox kit AD600 - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps

I knew what my Sony A7III was capable of and what I was expecting of it. We repeated the movement numerous times at the end of the rope, under the careful direction of Raphael.

Godox kit AD600 - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps

I wish to thank the whole team of rope access technicians whom, without the help, none of this would have been possible.

Raphael Gritti - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps - Les Cordistes Chablaisiens

I am looking to the next challenge with even crazier projects. You are all incredible.

To my team, thank you.

Philippe Lauer

The Fall - Photo Philippe Lauer
Philippe Lauer

Artistic Director & Photographer

I made a phone call to Raphael. I told him,
listen: I need to do this project.

Philippe Lauer - The Fall - cliff edge photography project

At first, he thought it was a plastic doll. We didn’t understand each other, it was funny.

Cliff edge - Avoriaz - French Alps

You should know It’s 300 meters (1’000 ft) high there.

Philippe Lauer with Sony A7III - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - Photo Simon Cloutier

I had expectations for this image, and he was looking for safety. So we had to agree between what I was looking for and what was safe enough.

Raphael Gritti - Cordistes Chablaisiens - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz
Raphaël Gritti

Rope Access Manager, Les Cordistes Chablaisiens

Raphael Gritti - Cordistes - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French AlpsChablaisiens

There was still 300 meters (1,000 ft) of cliff. So we had no room for error.

Cecile and Raphael Gritti - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps

Respect to Cécile who let go. And to be honest, I don’t think there are many who is able to do what she did.

The Fall - Photo Philippe Lauer
Cécile

Model

For this project, I was told they were looking for
a person who inhabits someone dropping off a cliff, someone who is very glamorous, someone very reckless.

Cecile - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps

What attracted me the most to the project,
was the reckless aspect, the overtaking side, the challenge.

Les Cordistes Chablaisiens - Raphel Gritti - Cecile - The Fall - Photo Philippe Lauer

Nothing was left to chance. Everything had been perfectly orchestrated, perfectly calculated. 
There was nothing left but to go. That’s why I was totally confident. There was a team behind, who did a great job. This gave me complete confidence.

Raphael Gritti - Cordiste - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - Photo Simon Cloutier

That was still beyond my hopes, far beyond my expectations.

I was scared!

I was afraid, but I was confident. I had a very reassuring team.

Cecile - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps

Sensational !
It’s breathtaking, It’s full of emotions,
A self-transcendence.

What happiness!

Cecile - The Fall - Photo Philippe Lauer

I can’t wait to doing this again in a next amazing project.

Show must go on!

The Fall - Photo Simon Cloutier
Nelly

Head Waitress, Le Roc Avoriaz

It’s wonderful what she has done.
She’s super brave to have done that.

Nelly - Le Roc - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps
Victor

Pub Manager, Le Roc Avoriaz

This cliff already has a story.

Buildings - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps

The buildings next to it have a crazy view. These constructions were made precisely to take advantage of this view.

Taking a picture there, adds even more
to the legend of this mountain.

Victor - Le Roc - The Fall - cliff edge photography project in Avoriaz - French Alps
Station Avoriaz Les Portes du Soleil

Avoriaz is a French mountain resort located in the territory of Morzine, Haute Savoie, between Thonon (Geneva lake), Cluses and Chamonix Valley. Avoriaz is a resort on the main circuit of one of the largest skiing areas in the world, Les Portes du Soleil, named after a pass between France and Switzerland. The entire Portes du Soleil offers between 650 and 700 km of piste and more than 200 lifts. The 3 original architects of Avoriaz have all won awards for their work such as the Académie des Beaux Arts, the Equerre d’Argent and silver medal from the Architectural Académie.

References

Remerciements - La Chute - The Fall - projet de photographie en bord de falaise à Avoriaz

THE FALL,

Based on an original idea by Philippe Lauer

Artistic Director: Philippe Lauer @philippe_lauer
Photographer: Philippe Lauer @philippe_lauer
Artistic Direction Assistant: Caroline Delabie @enilorac_5
Model : Cécile @mamzelle.cnc
Rope Access Manager: Raphaël Gritti
Rope Access Assistant: Florent Mardargent
Rope Equipment: Les Cordistes Chablaisiens @les_cordistes_chablaisiens
Director (video & editing): Michael Bouvard @Michael_Bouvard
Drone Pilot: Thomas Arneodo @thomasarneodo
Couture Stylist: Hélène Cloutier @heleneavo
1st Light Assistant: Yann @yunphotos11
2nd Light Assistant: Jonathan Béglet
Photographer Assistant: Simon Cloutier @aaa.simon.cloutier
Translation: English (Camilia @camiyya), Chinese (Ning)
Music remixed from Drums And Percussion (Epic Music World) & Max Epic Music – The best of percussion (Hunter Max)
Camera Equipment: Sony A7III @sony – Godox kit AD600 @godox

Partenaires - La Chute - The Fall - projet de photographie en bord de falaise à Avoriaz

Project Partners :

Luxury & Fashion Media: Le Club de l’élégance @clubdelelegance
Rope Access: Les Cordistes Chablaisiens @les_cordistes_chablaisiens
Video: MB Media Diffusion
Ski School: Ecole de ski 360 International @360_ski_school_esi
Lounge: Le Roc Avoriaz @lerocavoriaz @leloungeroc
Real Estate: Avoriaz Holidays @avoriazholidays
Ski Resort: Avoriaz Portes du Soleil @avoriaz1800_officiel
Ski Resort: Morzine Avoriaz Portes du Soleil @morzineofficiel
Swiss Media: Valeur Suisse Institut @valeursuisse
Restaurant: Le Trainô @le_traino_avo1800

15 August 2022
Les Cordistes Chablaisiens
The Fall: a photographic project on the edge of a cliff
The Fall: a photographic project on the edge of a cliff
Avoriaz Holidays
Le Roc Avoriaz

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