For our ongoing interview series "5 questions on analogue photography," we send the same set of questions to different photographers around the globe. This time we talked to Dorje de Burgh from Ireland. Check out his work and what he has to say about shooting with film.
Name: Dorje de Burgh
1. Tell us about yourself in three sentences maximum?
Art/photography & music obsessive. Untrained but occassional artwork designer. Serious weakness for somewhat overpriced yet beautifully made Scandinavian clothing that I can’t really afford.
2. Why do you still shoot analogue?
I suppose the root of it is that I personally prefer both the tactility of the process of working with film and the particular qualities of the end result.
It’s totally nerdy – and illogical to a certain degree due to the fact that what a digial sensor is doing is fundamentally identical and no less amazing – but I still get more of a kick out of the alchemistic aspect of light hitting emulsion to create a new object, latent or otherwise.
It’s also something of a cliché but the digital camera’s elimination of the happy accident can often – in my experience – lead towards a certain sterility. That said, I’m in no way a militant purist – each has its own advantages and disadvantages depending on a given scenario.
3. What photographic equipment (cameras, films, and accessories) do you usually have in your bag?
Day-to-day either a Mamiya 7ii with a 90mm, or Contax G2 with a 45mm and a TLA200 flash. If I’m shooting a job I’ll bring both along with a 28mm and a 90mm for the Contax and an old Hanimex hammerhead flash for the Mamiya. Filmwise I generally stick to Kodak Portra 400 and 800.
4. Share a trick of yours that will always result in a great photo.
Tough question. Don’t look through the viewfinder?
5. What photographers influence your work?
Paul Graham and JH Engstrom have definitely been the most important influences over the years. Graham’s book New Europe and Engstrom’s Haunts were both massive in regard to the development of my own practice… I recently discovered a guy called Mark Cohen who’s been making work since the 60s – I’d never even heard of him until I was at Paris Photo this year. If you can, grab his book Dark Knees – it blew my mind; dark, surreal and very human. Speaking of which, he never looks through the viewfinder, hence the title! Oliver Sieber’s self published ‘Imaginary Club’ was another new find, and it’s an incredible piece of work, seriously inspiring stuff.
Thanks Dorje for taking the time to answer our questions and sharing your photographs with us!
If you want to see more of his work, take a look at his website www.dorjedeburgh.com.