Krzystyna Caldarone from Vintage Girl Studios takes us back in time. Her vintage pin-up photoshoots manage to perfectly balance authenticity, playfulness, sexiness and aesthetic — and we all know that's a razor's edge. Loving and respecting her work, we couldn't wait to have Krzystyna try out our very first prototype of the Diana Instant Square and see how her vintage vibes would come across on its instant snaps. When she sent back her results, we got even more excited about our brand new addition to the Instant and Diana families!
Hi Krzystyna, glad to have you back! Tell us, what have you been working on since we last spoke?
I’ve been very busy in the studio. This spring and summer have been all about events. I have been traveling to a lot of vintage-themed events with my Lomo'Instant Wide. I’ve brought it to cabarets, Newport Art Deco Weekend, Viva East Rockabilly weekender, and the Ipswitch Roaring Twenties Lawn Party. People are so excited about instant photography. It really is an icebreaker in networking and allows someone to take home an instant portrait.
You continuously go back to shooting with instant cameras, what about instant photography are you attracted to?
I love watching the images slowly appear and the tangible work of art that is in my hands within moments. I find instant photography an amazing social interaction that is missed today. I also love that I do not need to sit in a computer chair to achieve this.
Your vintage aesthetic and traditional formality are also themes you return to in your photographs, how do you capture that through more modern cameras?
I worked for a long time in a traditional portrait studio. I try to think about how large cameras worked. For instance, framing shots vertically, cropping my images to be standard sizes and sparing use of wide angle lenses are ways I keep things looking vintage.
How'd you like working with the Diana Instant Square?
I really liked working with it. I loved the size and the square format. It had a cool look to it with manual controls. I can't wait to shoot with it again.
What features about the camera do you enjoy?
The interchangeable lenses were great. I was able to switch a wide angle lens if I was shooting in a small area. I liked the size and how it felt more comfortable in my hand than other cameras. It really gave an authentic look to my images
How do you see yourself using the Diana Instant Square?
I can really see myself using it at events where I am walking around taking candids. It fits perfectly in my smaller camera bag and is a great conversation piece.
Your images with the camera have a super sharp quality to them, how did you achieve that?
I achieved the sharpness by using strobes and a light meter. When I started doing photography, film was so expensive. I learned quickly that taking time to meter the strobes was critical to getting the light almost perfect. I also used the Diana Flash to set off my slaves and fill in certain shadows.
What can we expect to see from you in the future?
I feel that it’s time for me professionally to publish a book of my images. I have spent the summer writing a formal book proposal. My book series will be called the Instant Pin-Up and will be a collection of women portraits from my vintage adventures as well as in the studio. Photographed completely using analog instant cameras, there will be no beauty modification of my subjects. The images consist of just my eye, the camera, and the beautiful vintage women.
Dive into the vintage world of Krzystyna Caldarone on her Instagram.