Katrina Tan likes taking film pictures of the city she lives in, flowers of wonderful colours, and her most beloved pups. To her, film photography is an exciting and a mysterious form of gratification. She is also looking forward to owning her very first SLR camera.
Tell us something about yourself.
Hi, I’m Katrina and I’m a photography and Lomography enthusiast. When away from my cameras, you can find me blogging away at Pugly Pixel and Powered by Pastries.
How/When did you begin taking pictures? What was your first camera?
I took a trip to Europe in the early ‘90s and documented my trip with a thousand pictures. Sadly, I don’t remember the make and model of the camera I used, but it was a film camera, certainly.
Describe your style in photography. What are your usual subjects and themes?
I don’t have any particular style, really. I’m learning about composition as I go along. I would describe my style as “random,” but striving for minimalist elegance. My favorite subjects to photograph? The City, my pups, and flowers.
Amongst your numerous film photographs, which is your favourite?
My favorite shot would have to be the photo that I took with my Diana Mini — the one I call “Electric Pink.” I like the contrast of nature’s beauty overwhelmed by the ugliness of man’s technical accomplishments.
What is the soundtrack for your series of photographs?
The Francophile romantic in me would say that Django Reinhardt himself is playing his guitar in the background — either Limehouse Blues or Stormy Weather.
We all have our idols, which photographers do you look up to?
Oh, I have numerous photography heroes and heroines, but these fine photographers immediately come to mind: Diana from Our City Lights (California) and Melly from Green Laundry (Singapore).
If you could take anyone’s portrait using film, can be living or dead, who (would it be), which (camera would you use), and why?
My husband… as he was in his childhood. One of my favorite things to do is to look though his baby album. He was such a bundle of love and it would be a great fantasy to photograph him as a baby — with my Holga!
Analogue vs. Digital. What makes analogue/film photography more special than digital?
It’s fun to take pictures with film since gratification is delayed usually by days and often for weeks. There is an excitement and anticipation of what my pictures will look like and sometimes, I find a mysterious roll of film in my purse and I don’t know what pictures are on that film. It’s exciting.
Since the film we are using is finite and expensive, I find myself thinking more about what the picture will be before I start snapping away wildly. I have to take special care with film photos and I think that gives me a greater thrill when a picture turns out really sweet.
Do you own Lomography cameras? Which is your favourite?
I own a Diana Mini and a classic Holga. As for my favorite, I would have to choose my Diana Mini purely for ease of use. I’ve had numerous had numerous photographic fiascos with my Holga — it was something to do with the back falling off the camera for lack of black sticky tape.
A lot of people are into photography today, what would you say to them to inspire them more?
It’s clear to me that I see the world differently when I’m looking through my camera. I feel that I see a little more deeply into the world. Now, if that’s something that interests you, get a camera and snap away. :)
Do you have any ongoing/future projects?
Yes! I’m going to invest in an SLR camera before summer begins. I’m not sure if I’m particularly ready, but I’m eager to learn. So my project for the summer? Learn how to take film photos with a Nikon SLR.
Katrina blogs at puglypixel.com.