Laura Kidd aka. She Makes War is a multi-instrumentalist, looper and vocalist from the UK – She released her debut album "Disarm" in 2010 and is already preparing for the release of her second album ‘Little Battles’ early next year. Laura has created a beautiful teaser video for the new album using the brand new LomoKino camera – Read the interview, watch the video and find out how to pre-order the album here!
Please begin by telling us a little about yourself…
I am DIY gloom-pop solo artist She Makes War, also working as a freelance video director and editor, photographer and social media rabble rouser. I’ve just completed my second album, “Little Battles”, and am in the middle of prepping it to go out in to the world in early 2012.
How long have you been a Lomographer for? Or are you new to the whole thing?
I bought my first Lomography camera on tour in San Francisco in 2008 and have gathered a nice little collection over the years since then, including an LC-A+, Smena, Lubitel, Sprocket Rocket and La Sardina. I always try and take one of the cameras on tour with me because they’re light, tough and so much fun.
The She Makes War video shot using the LomoKino!
How was your experience shooting your music video with the LomoKino?
It was great! I had planned two photo shoots in one day with my talented friends Dina Karklina and Laura Ward and in between drenching myself in bunting I roped them in to helping me shoot a little story walking around some local spots. We got lucky with the weather and I had fun bemusing passers by with my props.
What’s the appeal of shooting a video in analogue rather than digital?
The element of surprise and the very distinct look. On the one hand, it’s a bit scary not knowing what you’re going to get back from the lab – especially if you’re featuring in the footage yourself – but unless you’re prepared to recreate the entire shoot again on another day you have to be a bit more relaxed about what you use in the edit. I found having time in between shooting the footage and getting the scans back was a good thing, because when I watched I was looking at the overall effect rather than at what I was doing in each shot. It’s worth shooting a lot more footage than you think you’ll need though, because as wonderful as film is human error can easily get in the way of things. In this case two rolls of film weren’t put in the camera properly by me, resulting in them coming out completely blank! It was nice not having to do any color grading once the edit was complete, I just loved how everything looked and didn’t want to change a thing.
We hear you’re not just a great musician but a very talented filmmaker too – How do think that the fields of music and film complement each other?
In my project She Makes War, visuals are a way of conveying another aspect of the atmosphere created in the music, so I make music videos that give another version of the song stories. I like being quite overtly literal but also using subtle symbols and coming up with little quests, so in my recent video for a song called Slow Puncture (from my first album “Disarm”), I set up a treasure hunt around my favorite pieces of street art in East London and cycled from one location to the next. The idea was that a creature from a previous video, “Let This Be”, had set up the trail of clues to teach me a lesson and give me an opportunity to realize the value of the things I had rather than obsess about what wasn’t perfect, and I think some sense of that will come through the visuals even if the subtext isn’t all that obvious to the casual observer.
I think if you have a story to tell that might come out through music, or film, or both, or something else entirely, and in my case I like to blend music and film because sometimes I think in melody and sometimes in pictures.
Have you got any top movie-making tips you could share with us budding directors?
Figure out what story you’re telling and how best you can show it without having to explain too much. If you’re focused about your intentions and the emotions you want to convey that will come across to the viewer, but don’t worry, that doesn’t have to mean you have to plan every little detail – there’s plenty of room to be creative and to let things happen. So much of the “Slow Puncture” video was a happy accident – the glittering raindrops, the funny looks I got from passersby, the bird swooping down at the perfect moment, the Stormtroopers…
If you give the LomoKino to one other Director, who would it be and why?
Michel Gondry, because I think he’s one of the most creative directors around. I love how he creates unusual effects out of movement, props and set design. He always gives a tangible sense of space and that really resonates with me.
Which actor or actress would you like to play in a LomoKino movie you made?
I think Annie Clark aka St Vincent would be wonderful in a LomoKino movie – she has a very delicate but strong presence which would be fun to explore on film. She’s a musician, not an actress, but is wonderful in her own music videos.
Clichéd question, but what’s your favorite film?
I can only ever answer by saying what my favorite film is at the moment, and that’s a documentary called Catfish. If we’re going for favorite movie of all time, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind is definitely in my top 10.
How would you describe the LomoKino in 5 words?
Light, cute, sparky, surprising, fun.
What’s your favorite feature of the LomoKino and why?
The stop frame effect, it’s really lovely to have that as a natural occurrence of the camera rather than being something you have to plan. It’s a really distinctive look.
Bringing analogue back to the movies with a bang in the 21st century, the LomoKino is a Lomography movie camera that shoots spectacular, creative movies on all kinds of 35mm film. Head to the Microsite, watch some Movies and begin your analogue movie-making journey today!