We were amazed by her work and instantly fell in love with her summer shots. Meet Pauline Gallot, a french photographer and interior designer whose work is all about telling stories and capturing authentic moments. She became fascinated with analogue photography at an early age, and ever since she has been taking photos and creating something timeless. In an interview for our magazine, Pauline talks about her experience travelling around NYC and Texas and reveals her all time favourite travel camera.
Hey Pauline! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and where are you currently based?
Hey. As you said, my name is Pauline, I’m between 8 and 24 years old, sometimes even 32 but that’s rare. Currently I’m living in Hossegor, Southwest France. That’s where I work, in the everyday life I’m an interior designer. Passionate about travelling as much as with the people I come across. Inspired by what they can offer and pass on. Photography as a compulsive obsession, relentlessly trying to seize the ephemeral. Writing as an outlet, I write life moments for some magazines. I have a hard time considering one place as “my home”, I love leaving whenever I feel like time has come to. So, who knows where will I be soon.
What made you fall in love with analogue photography? How did it all start?
When you shoot with analogue you decide to write a different story. You capture the instant, the sole instant, there isn’t a second try. The result is less planned, more instantaneous I believe, and that is what I like. Everything is more authentic in the procedure. More physical. Like a fresh love story. The colors, the uncertain outcome, the blurred or missed negative embellishes even more the memory and that is what I love. I started wanting to capture all sorts of moments since I was like ten. That (bad) habit hasn’t stopped growing since, and little by little I abandoned digital on behalf of analogue.
I found my first playing partner on eBay, a Zenit Em from Russia. I loved the grain, the sound of the shutter, the surprise I had discovering my couple of first prints, the things you had immortalized some time ago and completely forgot about. Everything picked up from there, very quickly I accumulated second hand cameras, first because of their price but also by curiosity to know who could have owned them and what might have passed in front of their lens.
How would you describe your photographic style?
Haha. I have no sort of idea. I would say authentic. I content myself with telling my story through photography. Nothing is calculated. Everything that comes out represents a certain moment of my life. Most of the time, things I live interiorly, things that make me vibrate you see. The violence, the softness of the colors, the smells, the music, I try to immortalize what I live on that moment in order not to forget. Always.
In your opinion, how hard it is to stay unique in the world of photography?
Today with all the social networks that we know we are permanently bathed in pictures here and there. We all get inspired from these I believe, even sometimes unconsciously. And so, I don’t know if staying unique in photography is possible, or even if it is a goal. Everything depends on which authenticity you are talking about, there is on one hand the style and on the other the subject that are defining. Everyone has stories to tell through their photography, every life is unique. So even if subjects can be similar, the grain, the feel, the texture of a photo is what fortunately allows us to be unique.
What is your favorite camera when travelling?
Hm. Without a doubt my Chinon Monami 35mm. Semi-Automatic, ideal format.
You spent your summer travelling around NYC and Texas. What was the best part of this experience? What did you enjoy shooting the most?
Yeah, Summer 2014, Summer 2015, it goes a way back now but these two trips were defining in my photographic work. I spent a lot of time with a good group of friends, themselves photographers/artists. They knew how to inspire and give a lot to me on this trip. The best part thought, was when I was by myself, trying to occupy my days discovering new people, telling their stories. People fascinate me and I love to shoot them it’s certainly my favorite topic. The smiles, the details of each face, capturing an emotion on a face. Photography has been a superb tool for this. It speaks to everyone; it brings people closer. I remember one afternoon on a Brooklyn rooftop with models that appeared out of nowhere, topless on the rooftop we kept shooting while some speakers were spiting good sound in the background. It was a fine afternoon.
What is it that you want others to see through your photographs?
I content myself with delivering the vision I have on life. I want to share my everyday life, maybe make people travel a bit through my photography I believe. Give news to the people that matter to me, the people that stayed where I left. After the US, I lived some time in Barcelona, then I landed in the Southwest of France. Every place has its particularity, its landscape, its imprint. I want to share all of that. The lights, the smiles, all those moments in life. I generally don’t do that to please others, no contest for likes, just the daily life. I share all these memories wanting to tell: “whoever enjoy, just follow”.
What motivates you to keep shooting on film?
To keep immortalizing the ephemeral in a less certain way then what I can do with digital. To keep being surprised with every print. To keep having a physical format of every development, making albums, giving and sharing what is set. To keep reasoning by series of 24 or 36, to ask you what really matters before each trigger and thus retrieve the best.