We are always on the lookout for inspiring and talented photographers to feature in the Magazine. One look at photographer Fahad Khokhar's wildly colorful and visually enticing portraits and we're sold from the get-go. In this short interview, we got to know more about the New Jersey-based photographer and his film work. Be warned, the sweet hues and tones from this stylized series offer some serious eye candy.
Hello, Fahad. Welcome to the Lomography Online Magazine! How did you get started on your photographic journey?
Hey, Lomography. Thanks for reaching out and shout out to you guys for keeping the film community alive!
Honestly, it started out as just a way to kill boredom initially. I grew up with cameras around me. My grandfather used to own a few as did my dad - so it was just natural for me to pick one up as well.
How would you define photography?
For the longest time, I considered photography to be mere snapshots and nothing more. However, as time has gone by and I have fallen deeper into the rabbit hole, I have come to realize it is a full-fledged art form and a means of self-expression.
What's your favorite thing about it?
The false sense of ease it offers at the beginning, and the lifetime of learning that follows.
The moment we saw your colorful portraits, we knew we had to invite you over for an interview. Please talk about the shoot. What inspired you to do it? What was going in your head when you were taking the photos?
I'm a big Wes Anderson fan, so when my friend Jimmy told me that he wanted to shoot at this pop-up ice cream shop in NYC, it instantly reminded me of a Wes Anderson movie set, and I was immediately onboard. Throughout the shoot, I felt like I was in a Wes Anderson film and tried to channel some of his trademark stylistic choices such as symmetry and striking color palettes.
We just love the overall composition of your shots. Everything feels curated — so clean and playful at the same time. How did you prepare for the shots?
For the preparation of the shoot, I would have to credit my good friend, Jimmy. Here is what he has to say about it:
Once my mind was set on shooting at this location, I began to think of models who would fit not only the aesthetic but the pretty intense and bright location. The tall blonde model featured in Fahad’s most popular shot is Julie. Julie is a natural with amazing poses wrapped up in elegant and stylish outfits. She is extremely easy to shoot with and doesn’t need much direction when it comes to hitting a pose. The second model, Jill, posed a great contrast to Julie in terms of what she was wearing as well as her complexion. This contrast created a nice balance between the two models operating in the same space with very cool, yet different outfit choices!
What made you choose film for this particular project?
We were shooting during business hours so I did not want to use artificial lights and a slower speed film as it would impede the business and customers. For that reason, I decided to go with Fuji Superia 1600 as it enabled me to shoot with the ambient light exclusively.
How would you describe your style?
Constantly evolving — I started with street portraits, moved to landscapes and this summer I have been shooting a lot of fashion/editorial kinda stuff.
What inspires you?
Everything — it can range from numbers and patterns to a groovy bass line. Some days it could be a film I watched, some days it might be a piece of literature I read.
Who are the artists/photographers that you follow? Why?
I really enjoy looking at film stills. I personally feel the best works are usually made when like-minded people come together and create something beautiful that they independently would not have been able to. Apart from Wes Anderson's work, I really enjoy Wong Kar Wai's older stuff. Gregory Crewdson, David Lynch, and Darren Arronofsky are some other artists whose work I really enjoy.
How does a perfect day look like for Fahad Khokhar?
Surrounded by amazing yet humble artists creating the highest form of art for the sake of art.
Lastly, what's next for you?
I have my first art show this Saturday at OQ Coffee in Highland Park, NJ. Would love to meet some of the NJ/NYC readers there. I'm always looking to collaborate with like-minded people so feel free to drop me a DM on Instagram.
We would like to thank Fahad for letting us feature his images in the Magazine. If you're interested in his work, you may head over to his Instagram for more.