Curious as to the musings of Ladytron’s Mira Aroyo regarding music, life and Lomography in general? Mia shares her thoughts and insights with us in this little LomoAmigo interview. Read on for the full scoop and a peek at her gorgeous photographs.
Name: Mira Aroyo
1. Will you tell the community a little bit about yourself? What takes up most of your time dreaming or doing?
I am a musician in the group Ladytron, and live in London. Because of my profession I get to travel to a lot of interesting places. Working on music probably takes up most of my time but photography has been a big hobby of mine since I was a kid. I am lucky to be able to travel and taking photos is a good way of getting out of your hotel room / tour bus and making the most of your time and immersing yourself in a place and its culture. Also I love coming home and seeing fleeting moments that I experienced in 2 dimensions on paper once the photos have been developed. Often in photos you see things that you missed in real life. The problem comes when you take so many photos that you actually miss out on what happens in front of you. The camera can act as blinkers or reveal moments that you would otherwise miss out on by freezing them in time.
2. Ladytron has been called, “A pristine, analog adventure of sound and substance”. For those not familiar with your work yet, can you tell us a bit about the ways in which your music is analogue and how your live performances set Ladytron apart?
We got together as a band about 10 years ago and we make music using a lot of synthesizers, especially vintage analogue synths from the 70s and early 80s. We are not purely electronic and are not a dance act, we write songs and perform live as a band… I guess we differ from a lot of other bands as we have 2 front singers, myself and Helen and on top of the usual guitar/drums/bass we also use a lot of synths…8-10 on stage. That is quite uncommon.
3. How long have you been a Lomographer (or are you new to this whole thing)?
I got an LC-A after seeing a friend of mine I think around 7 years ago. I was given my first Diana as a birthday present more recently.
4. In both your music and a photography you choose analogue. What is it about analogue for you that is so attractive as a form of expression.
I guess the way this kind of equipment is built, there is also some level of unpredictability in the results and they somehow feel more organic.
5. How do you feel being a musician affects your work in photography? Are the two unrelated in your opinion or would say that music and photos both have the similar ability to, “act as blinkers or reveal moments that you would otherwise miss out”.
Photography is more like pointing at things for me, where as with music you start from scratch. With both you make decisions of what to include and what to omit, obviously, and these are very important. In a way both romanticize personal moments past.
6. Describe the Diana F+ in five words.
Light, unpredictable, friendly, unobtrusive.
7. If your photos shown here could have a soundtrack of three songs, what would they be (song title & artist please).
- Michael Nymann – Chasing Sheep Is Best Left To Shephards (from The Draughtman’s Contract soundtrack)
- Nico – All That Is My Own
- Townes van Zandt – Mr. Gold and Mr. Mud
8. What is the next stop for you and your Diana F+ (or any camera)? Do the two of you have planes for the near future?
I travel a lot and use the Diana a lot in sunny locations. It works best in bight sun light. I always try and research interesting locations before I set off. Also with summer coming up there will be more chances to shoot at home in parks and at picnics.
9. How is the experience of looking for a shot in your home town different then when you are on a trip or somewhere new? Are the moments your try to capture different?
I’ve heard it said that if you can photograph your back yard well you can do anything and I feel that’s very true. It’s easier to motivate yourself to take photos if you are in a new place and you feel excited and stimulated by what surrounds you. I like finding things that are in a way strange and weird but also very positive and in a way make me feel good and smile. It’s easier to do that away from home and more of a challenge to do it in a place you know well. Photographing a place you know well has it’s advantages as you know where and when things will look right. Picking a topic to photograph is harder though.
10. Your advice to future Diana F+ shooters is…?
When you frame your shot make sure you leave about 1/4 of the frame more space above the highest point of subject as the view finder is not accurate and does not compensate for parallax effect. You need to leave more space and compensate more the closer you are to your subject. Also bear in mind that the further away you get from the center of your frame the more out of focus that part of the picture will be. Always check when you get your camera out of your bag that it is not on the ‘B’ setting. I’ve had many a film ruined like that.
11. What’s on the agenda next for Ladytron? New release or tours we can keep an eye out for?
We are currently working on our 5th studio album and are about to release a ‘Best of’ including a couple of new tracks too. We also DJ and so we have a lot of DJ gigs coming up too.