The two visual artists from DRECK Magazine, Amanda M. Jansson and Volk Kinestshniy, share their unique aesthetic as well as insights into why they pursue photography and their love for instant film.
Welcome to Lomography Magazine! Can you introduce yourselves and your magazine to the Lomography community?
We are two analog artists, Amanda M. Jansson and Volk Kinetshniy. DRECK Magazine is raw and dirty and bold, with a focus on street and underground culture. DRECK’s aesthetics want to clash with the norm. What is perceived and dictated as pretty or trendy is of no interest to us. Due to our own preference for shooting film, there is an emphasis on analog art without excluding digital art that we like. DRECK Magazine seeks to become an independent platform for new, old, odd ideas in arts as well as in fashion.
Both of you have a very unique aesthetic, would you be able to give a brief description of that to us?
We’d describe our aesthetics as queer, gritty, sometimes melancholic, sometimes explicit or raw. We shoot in snapshot style, so our photographs are candid, usually counterbalancing glamour. We strongly believe in the beauty of imperfection and humanizing the subject. Also, we have an interest in things that are provocative in one way or another because the best of art always is.
What message do you try to convey with your photography?
We haven’t thought about it as conveying a message. Just feel the need to create something that represents our view on life, in the world, and on art. The message is also part of the viewer. Each spectator will usually see a different message.
What makes you shoot instant film?
Instant film is analog but you also don’t have to wait for a lab, you can view the result right away! It’s more fun! The model can also see the picture and interact differently with you and the camera. We’ve been photographing for many years now and we’ve never had so much fun as when photographing with the Lomo Instant Wide. It was a whole new experience, seriously! Pure fun! It is lightweight so we took it anywhere along, has many settings we could experiment with and gives a lot of control over the camera compared to other instant cameras. It has different lens attachments, it allows to set the exposure, allows for double exposures, the coloured flash is also awesome.
How'd you like working on a wide format rather than a traditional square? Do you think this is a better option?
We own and use a lot of instant cameras, polaroids and fujis, basically all formats that exist. We love both formats, wide and square. Wide format is great for getting the perspective you are after because all 35mm cameras are also in wide format. It is also very good for getting rid of any composition rules that might be stuck in your head. We also like to use wide format as complementary shots when we shoot fashion sometimes.
As artists using a wide variety of mediums, what draws you to photography?
We started photographing by chance. We liked looking at pictures and eventually we also wanted to take pictures. We liked how you actually learned to look at things differently, viewing was not just seeing anymore. When you are a photographer, you think differently, you see in pictures, you learn to observe closely, to notice things you wouldn’t have noticed, you learn to snap rapidly or wait for hours.
How would you say photography and your other mediums (tattooing, illustration, painting) relate?
Well, for Volk, who paints a lot, photography is very similar to painting and drawing. Photography and painting are both a lot about composition, light, shadows, colours, theme. In paintings however, imagination can be unlimited, you can create anything you want, it’s easier to explore more macabre themes which is not feasible in our photography. Tattooing is perhaps not that closely related, but as Amanda also works as a tattoo artist, her designs reflect her aesthetics that also appear in our photographic work.
Where do you think you're heading in your artistic career? What themes do you want to explore next?
Right now we wanna focus a bit on voyeurism, because we want to start working on a movie powered by DRECK Magazine, with the participation of artists from different disciplines and backgrounds. We definitely wanna experiment more with filmmaking and directing. Regarding photography strictly, we want to continue shooting in that style, collaborate with artist friends. Also publishing a book with new material is in the plans.