We have selected some of the most enthusiastic film photography fanatics and asked them 5 simple questions that gives us an insight into their passion for all things analogue. We also get to see some of their own photographs. Today, we talk to Laura Shriver.
Name: Laura Shriver
Country: United States
1. Tell us about yourself in three sentences maximum.
I’m Laura, I’m 17, I’m from the Boston area, and I always have a camera with me. I love being outdoors and exploring new places. I like nature, spontaneity, any color in between blue and green, clouds, film, and Pink Floyd.
2. Why do you still shoot analogue?
I’ve been told that I could do all my in-camera manipulations with Photoshop. I disagree. Not only do I not know how (it’s much more complex than simple film techniques) but it would never look the same. One of the most frustrating features of film is also one of the things I love most: it’s unpredictable. I never quite know what colors an expired roll of film will produce, I never know exactly how the images will overlap when I double expose them, and I never know where I might find some colourful light leaks. Beyond mysterious results, you can never Photoshop a photograph to make it look like it was taken with film. It’ll never have the right colors, the right textures; there’s nothing like the look of light exposed on silver nitrate. It’s so beautiful.
3. What photographic equipment (cameras, films, and accessories) do you usually have in your bag?
My go-to camera is my baby, my Pentax ZX7. I can shoot automatic and it has a button you can push to double expose, so it’s very convenient. If I want to shoot medium format I have a folding No. 1 Pocket Kodak Special from the 1920’s and a Holga. For regular color film I use Kodak 800 or Portra 400, but often I use expired film from eBay which results in strange colors and grain. For black and white, Tri X is always my favorite.
4. Share a trick of yours that will always result to a great photo.
You can always get an interesting, if not totally bizarre photo by double exposing. Double exposing is when you take two photographs on the same frame of film (you need a camera that doesn’t automatically rewind, or one with a double exposure setting) so that they overlap. It’s my favourite technique and many of my most successful photographs are double exposures.
5. What photographers influence your work?
Storm Thorgerson, William Eggleston, Chema Madoz, Bruce Davidson, Cindy Sherman, Abelardo Morell, Jeff Wall, Diane Arbus, and Man Ray.