Interview with LOTTIE MAHER, UNITED KINGDOM
Updated: Jan 23, 2019
Shooting film shows some level of skill and interest.
I'm super thrilled to have you here, Lottie. Please tell us a bit about yourself and your photography.
Lottie: My name is Lottie Maher, I grew up and still live in South London. I started ‘getting into’ film photography, after I dropped of my school during the middle of my A-levels. I realised that I had little to no interest in what I was being taught and that something had to change. I relocated to a six form collage in West London, and having done so awfully in my AS level exams. I decided to start from the beginning and so chose new subjects to study in the hope of getting into a University. This is where I met Cathy Graham, my photography teacher, who was one of the most talented/terrifying teachers I have ever had. When it came to photography, Cathy knew what she wanted. Cathy mentored me every day, teaching me a wide range of dark room processing skills and showing me how to set up basic studio lighting. The course was chaotic but so enjoyable, and I haven’t put down why camera since.
What type of film do you use and what camera do you use it with? Why do you prefer these?
Lottie: I bought my NikonFM2 off Cathy for about £60 about six years ago and I'm still using it. I like to experiment with film, keep things fun. Usually I use Portra 400 film for Colour and Kodak 400 TX for black and white, usually.
What do you think film has that digital doesn't have?
Lottie: I think for me its about composition, when you only have a certain amount of shots, you're not going to just snap away carelessly, it allows you to think and compose, and so usually the shots are more thought out, more intelligent. I always find it difficult when I take loads of photos of the same thing on my iPhone to tell which one is the best.
Do you print your own photographs or are you comfortable having them printed in a lab?
Lottie: I am currently in the process of printing quite a few prints. I am trained in printing black and white myself but not colour.
What motivates you to continue making photographs with film? Have you learned anything about yourself through film photography?
Lottie: Of course, it's as much about the subject as it is about you, ultimately it's the way that you see a situation or what you notice about a person. I love taking photographs with film not just because its a bit of an insight into how I see things as a person but also I love the process of taking photos on a film camera as well as having a physical print.
Are there any photographers that influenced your way of making pictures?
Lottie: Sebastião Salgado is one of my heroes, I love the narrative of his photographs.
Do you see any value or merit shooting with film?
Lottie: Yes I do, I also think because of how readily available digital photography has become, in a world where anyone can pick up their phone and take a ‘good photograph’. Shooting film shows some level of skill and interest.
What do you think your future is like with film photography?
Lottie: Unsure, I think its probably a bit like the way Vinyl has gone, its become quite fashionable, so I'm sure it has quite a promising and expensive future.
Any dream film photography project in mind?
Lottie: I would love to get involved in a project of some kind which is more concerned with humanitarian disasters or concerns.
Would you like to offer some good words to those who want to try film photography for the first time? What must they learn before venturing into this format?
Lottie: Do a bit of reading on how to use your camera, learn about aperture, ISO and all that technical stuff, so it doesn’t just become down to luck how some of your photos turned out and of course keep shooting.
Lottie is currently working on her personal website. Do stick around for an update on that.
In the meantime, check out Lottie's outstanding work on Instagram.
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Well now, if you are a passionate film photographer and would like to be interviewed? I’d love to hear from you. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject, "Interview me", and share your story, thoughts, and work related to film photography. I’ll get back to you as soon as I receive your request for an interview.
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