We are proud to present the next installment of The Handsome Project. Each month weâ€™ll showcase an amazing young photographer who blows our minds, shoots our stuff and is all together fantastic. Read on to see the rest of Katyâ€™s WAH photoshoot and interview!
How did you get here? (What’s your photography history?)
I took my first film class in college and was immediately in love with the medium. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I decided to go back to school for photography and make my dream a reality. I threw myself into it right away and hit the ground running.
Are you a self-taught photographer or did you have a mentor/teacher that showed you the ropes?
A little bit of both. A few years after finishing my undergraduate degree I went to a ten month intensive program at the Hallmark Institute of Photography in Massachusetts. Since finishing the program, I have come a long way through shooting, working hard, and trial and error. Photography is a life long learning process! That’s what I love about it so much, you never stop learning.
How did you come up with the concept behind your Handsome Project shoot?
I wanted to do something kitschy, vintage, playful.
What keeps you enthused about the photography industry?
It’s limitless…there are no boundaries.
Describe your approach in three words.
Less is more.
Black and white or colour?
Both for sure! I lean towards color more, but some emotions can only be read through black and white.
Film or Digital?
I tend to shoot more digital these days but I am diving back into film. I was craving it…there in nothing better than a film photograph that you can almost reach out and touch.
I have been relying on my Canon 5D Mark II too much, I can’t wait to get my hands on some more medium format film cameras.
Describe your photographic approach?
I like to go into a shoot with a solid concept, however you never know what twists and turns may come about. Some of my best shoots come from not really thinking about it and just shooting. Perhaps this is where the real vision comes through…
Of course, there are so many. Helmut Newton, David LaChapelle, Juergen Teller, Ellen Von Unwerth to name a few. There are so many amazing photographers I come across daily that I am amazed and inspired by, both professional and amateur.
What turns you on?
Freedom, friends, family, dance, music, travel, culture.
What turns you off?
Close minded people.
How do you decide on locations and subjects for your shoot?
It all depends on what the concept is. I love working in raw, minimal, real spaces that really allow the subject to pop.
If you could take your photography in any direction without fear of failure or rejection, where would it lead? What new things would you try?
The feeling I get when I open a magazine, and my jaw just drops…that is the experience I want to create. I’m more focused on the impact/emotional response of the complete composition. The fashion, the subject, the lighting, the environment – they are all equally important. I want to fuse my appreciation for fashion, my unsuspecting inspirations, and off-the beaten-trail travel into my career. The affect of my images on the viewer is the final satisfaction.
Best advice you’ve ever received?
“You choose life. You choose to be happy.” I bring myself back to this all the time.
What is the one quality you think is needed for a photographer to be great?
Be true to yourself and own your style. Pulling inspiration is inevitable and great, but it must be your own passion shining through or else your vision will be lost.
Where to next?
Shooting!, more collaborations, editorials, exposing my vision to the world.
We Are Handsome would like to hug and applaud Katy for crating this beautiful vintage photoshoot!