How to master light in Iphoneography? Yes, you need to get some useful apps which allow you to adjust the exposure the way you want. But first of all, you have to feel the light.
Agnès, a french photographer aka @ellla_k on Instagram has a great sense of lightning. Her gallery is made of beautiful images full of sensitivity which will not leave you unmoved!
Through this interview, Agnès tell us more about her passion for images.
“My taste for shadows and light is a kind of fascination” Agnès
P: Pierre A: Agnès
P: Agnès, where do you live and what is your occupation?
A: I was born and I live in Marseille. My roots are very mediterranean.
My job is to travel in Asia in search of local ethnic and authentic handicrafts. And I try to make a living of it.
I generally spend between 3-5 months per year in Asia. The love of travel has influenced my job.
P: One of the first impressions when visiting your feed is your mastery of light. Do you have any photographic background?
A: Native to Italy, I keep the taste of light and shadows, of narrow streets, drying clothes before the windows, of markets and people who also speak with their hands.
This taste for shadows and light is even a kind of fascination. Everything comes to life, colors and volumes through both of them. And this world of shadows, which deforms, expands or shrinks, to whom we can say how much, that tells a parallel story which can be scary or burlesque… which suggests without showing anything of the real scene or that reveals some hidden details, is, I confess, very pleasant to explore. I love it!
P: I’ve been told that you are also a painter, right? How does your painting influence your photographs?
A: Yes, that’s true. My passion for pictures comes from painting. I came to photography due to lack of time for painting. My son gave me an iPhone 3G a bit more than 1 year ago. I had already taken photographs here and there with a 3mp Kodak. I used to photograph what I liked, what I discovered on a trip, most of the time studies for my paintings.
Framing has always been important to me. I try to catch directly the scene without having to edit anything, excepted brightness and contrast.
P: How do you share your time between painting and photography?
A: Photography has gradually become more important. My eye has sharpened and there was this famous iPhone 3G: the magic worked!
Now, I think that photography is going to influence my painting…
P: What about Instagram? What do you think of this new photographic world made of apps?
A: Giving me his Iphone, my son told me about IG, telling me that it could be great for sharing images (photos and paintings). Well, with the iPhone there are plenty of apps, very nice to discover, but sometimes too advanced. What would the picture worth without all that processing, overlays and layers?
I think working in both ways is good. I mean my greatest pleasure is to take a picture and say to myself: “like this, without any editing, it is perfect”.
But I also love to capture a detail and edit the picture to get the result I have in mind (Work on a photo as I do on a canvas) or test new opportunities. Routine is boring!
P: What are your favorite apps especially to get a good light?
A: For shooting, I use the native application of the iPhone.
For the light, since I’ve been shooting with the iPhone 4s, I’ve been using Snapseed and recently filterstorm.
When I want to get painting or ink effects, I use Photoforge2. As for framing and some textures: Pixlromatic. Sometimes I use Hipstamatic in B&W combined to Lo mob (very few at the moment) and Squaready.
P: Do you still use a traditional camera?
A: At Christmas, I was offered a Canon EOS 1100D, another magician. I’m learning to use it.
I tested it during my last trip. I posted some photos on Flickr, nothing special but good memories. This is my first Canon. This camera allows portraits by zooming. I use a Tamron 18/200 to start and it gives a lot of possibilities.
The big advantage for me in these pictures is that I can post them in raw mode, without any cropping neither filters: a kind of “no edited” selection to give a live feeling of these travels. Later on, I will edit some of them…
P: What are your influences?
A: Can we talk about influences? I don’t know… I think we are influenced by what we like.
Actually, mine are many and various, but most of them certainly come from painting rather than from photography.
Have a style does not interest me much. I like to learn, to discover, to explore, to meet people, to look at all these details of life through their eyes, like in a journey.
Some igers well informed and well intentioned give me names of great photographers. Like a child, after reading a brief summary of their biography, I put Google in picture mode and look.
Those that touched me the most: portraits by Imogen Cunningham, shadows by Lucien Hervé, details of life by Edouard Boubat, photos in the snow by Giacomelli among others, and for now.
P: Could you tell us about your trips? How do they influence your work?
A: The journey teaches. Our reality is only ours, our point of view too, it is as good as another, but there is no absolute truth.
For all forms of art my thinking is the same.
My last trip which was actually the fourth in China was the most significant this year. Meeting a world that has changed so little and being able to capture moments was intense.
The hardest part is to successfully be forgotten when the tallest person around you is 1,60m and you are the only one with an oval head and a long nose .
Taking photographs with an iphone was not too much trouble as asians, even in the most farthest corners, are crazy with laptops and that kind of stuff. Nobody cares to see you playing with your device, that’s a big advantage! They have no problem with their image, it can even make them laugh and generate a complicity between you and them, depending on the sensitivity and respect that you put into it.
The next trip will be in Asia one more time, perhaps in India or perhaps in China again. These two continents are vast and have a rich culture, which is so good for pictures! Color, light, landscape, rich street life, all the ingredients that I love.
P: Do you have any upcoming project?
A: Yes! My head is full of projects? I would like to resume painting using some recent photographs, to learn how to use correctly Mister Canon, and keep on traveling!
P: Thank you very much Agnès!