Before I get to this fabulous interview with Stacie Turner, I want to say a big fat and juicy "Thank You" to Little Bellows for giving me a chance to be the monthly blog contributor to their brand new feature: Spotlight Feature [on Film Photographers]! On first Monday of each month, starting with this feature, I will reveal one artist behind his/her beautiful film images! So make sure to check back with me each month. And if you have a secret crush on a film photographer and would like to get to know him/her better, let me know! I would love to feature him/her!! Now on to my interview with Stacie Turner.
I have been a fan of Stacie's work since I discovered film. To be honest, I am probably her secret stalker, totally not in a weird way, or is it? Ah never mind that! If you ask around in the film community, you will know that Stacie is known for her creative, unconventional film images, all shot with her Holga 120n. I am so ecstatic that Stacie agreed to an interview, and I hope you will enjoy it as much as I do!
Joyce: Tell us a little bit about your photography background. How did you first get into photography? Do you have a formal education in photography or self-taught?
Stacie: I think I qualify as self-taught. I was handed my first SLR before I hit puberty because my step-father was a very avid photographer. Like many women I got a DSLR after my children were born thinking that if I had a good camera (that didn't have a delay - this was a very important point) I would get good pictures of my kids. You can stop laughing now. I joined a photography board and pretty much learned how to do more than point the camera at pretty scenery and push the button there.
Joyce: I am sure many will agree with me: you are the queen of Holga. I have been a fan of your work for a loooong time now. Your Holga images are insane! LOL! Of all the film cameras out on the market, why Holga?
Stacie: Oh, you're so sweet! I bought a Holga because I thought it was a cheap way to play with film. Again, you can stop laughing. If I'd spent all the money I've spent on those Holgas on normal lenses I'd have a kit to envy. You may sense a pattern here; I make poorly informed, naive decisions and then just keep going.
Joyce: Have you always shot film? What drew you to film?
Stacie: OK, so that SLR I got as a child was 35mm film, and I do still have it. I grew up with film, a house with a darkroom, piles of work prints on surfaces, chemicals in jars on the kitchen counter. But I wasn't that in to film; film was that boring thing my parents did. I didn't think twice about moving to digital to get those "good pictures of my kids" to share on a mommy blog (long since taken down - don't look for it). I found the perfection issues of digital did pretty bad things to my psyche. I can be a trifle detail oriented in my shooting and I was turning into a photographer who took perfectly lit, perfectly composed pictures that were incredibly boring. I played around with funky editing for a while but it was really just tossing all control away and using a primitive tool that let me really love photography and open up creatively. I do like the aesthetic of film, and I LOVE the aesthetic of alternative processes but I don't really have time to devote to them. Yet.
Joyce: What moves you? Where do you draw creative inspiration from?
Stacie: My kids. Ugg. What a cliched answer. I wish I were deep and could say the struggles of women as they wrestle with the bounds of modern, suburban motherhood inform my work. But I'm interested in kids. My kids, primarily, but also other people's kids. What they do, what they think, what world they live in.
Joyce: Can you share with us one piece of advice when shooting with Holga?
Stacie: Meter. You don't want to know how many rolls of film I have ruined because I didn't think to meter because, hey, if there's not a meter in the camera who cares?! A smart phone app is fine to take care of this problem; just plug in 1/100, f/13 and whatever ISO you are using and go for it.
Joyce: Who are your favorite (classic or modern) photographers that you look to for inspiration?
Stacie: Suzanne Revy, Jim Rohan, Heather Pyles
Joyce: If you can only pack one film camera on a vacation, which one would you take and why?
Stacie: Holga 120N. Which is what I did last time. And, I think, the time before that. Grown up cameras are heavy, and can break if you bang them against a rock, and the lenses can scratch and that's bad, and if you leave them lying about on the sand someone might steal it. But a Holga, well, if you break it, no big deal, and if someone steals it, well, too bad. They are worry free, anxiety free cameras.
Joyce: What are your favorite film stocks?
Stacie: I love slide film of any sort for the amazing, pure colors and tri-x 400 because you can push the heck out of it.
Joyce: Any new and exciting happenings in your world you would like to share with us?
Stacie: This September I am teaching another section of my Composition/Mentoring class at I Love Photography. The class has always sold out so I anticipate it doing so this time as well. Registration information is on my web site. This summer I plan to just do a lot of shooting and sort out what happens with that in the fall :)
Joyce: Two truths and a lie...go!
Stacie: I can ice skate backwards (one of the benefits of having figure skating children is lots of time at the rink.) Only a thin thread of sanity keeps me from being a crazy cat person. I have recently realized I like figs more than ice cream sundaes which is very odd.
You can see more and follow Stacie's work:
Blog Contributor and Writer: Joyce Kang
Joyce Kang is a fine art children and family photographer in Austin, Texas. Besides being Little Bellow's blog contributor, she is also teaching an online intro to film workshop, Embrace The Grain, through In Beauty and Chaos Photography Forum. She is a mom of four boys, a wife to her BFF and a helpless addict to coffee. You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google+.