lauren bamford photography interview

You might recognise Lauren Bamford's name from within our very pages, because we can't get enough of the local shutterbug's snaps. From roadtrips through Tassie to overseas jaunts and carefully styled set-ups, we wish we could glimpse the world through her finely tuned peepers. Instead, we've sent her some probing questions to find out more about her craft.

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What is your name and how old are you?
My name is Lauren Bamford and I am 34.

How does where you live affect your photography? Well I live in Melbourne, and being here definitely influences the content of my photography (food, artists, etc) but I couldn't really say if it has affected the style of my photography. I only found my style as a photographer once I'd landed here in 2003.

When did you first know you wanted to be a photographer? When I was in high school, year 9 art class, we made pinhole cameras and developed in the dark room. I loved it, and had a Dad who had a love for photography too and was very encouraging.

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What areas, things or people in your neighbourhood do you most like to photograph? I like to shoot a combination of an eye-catching colour palette and an interesting composition, generally things that are a little worn out. It's just what I'm drawn to. This applies to anywhere in the world rather than just my neighbourhood.

Is there a running theme to the work you create, or do you just make whatever comes to mind? A little of both really. Sometimes I have a 'theme' in mind and go directly for it. Such as my dogs in cars series, my current 'Locals' series (beer can/flower still lifes), my roadside produce stall series – they are all collections of the same type of thing, and I prefer to take a documentary approach when creating them. So not overthought, more impulsive.

What kinds of ideas are you working on at the moment? I'm continuing my aforementioned 'Locals' series, just travelling whenever I can and making the most of being somewhere with new beer cans and flowers to play with. And of course my ongoing editorial and commercial work, which is an interesting mix of lifestyle, food, interiors and reportage style photography.

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Do you take the same care with personal photographs as you do with commercial/artistic work? If at all, I take less care with personal work – as in, most of it isn't thought through or planned, it just happens. However, when I'm working on a series for exhibition that has such a strong theme, I'm a stickler for my own rules with how I execute it. Which can be a very frustrating internal battle with myself!

What advice can you offer on finding your personal style or aesthetic? Well this can be difficult as, speaking for myself, I admire lots of different styles of photography and photographers, and trying to figure out where you fit in can be a slippery slope to plain old copycatting. Whatever comes naturally to YOU and makes you love your pictures should be the style to pursue.

What are the hallmarks of a great photographer? Depends what you consider a great photographer!

What are your thoughts on the rise of mobile phone photography and Instagram? I don't mind it at all, I really enjoy participating, myself. It seems like there is a growing population of people in the world that now appreciate a good image. No matter who or what took it.

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What is the strangest thing or thought that has inspired a photo? Back when I was shooting bands for album covers, there were quite a few strange concepts floating around that were born out of a need to just be different and stand out. Having raw meat flung around a white room with an intoxicated band in tiny white shorts is one. That one was inspired by the banned album cover for The Beatles' Yesterday and Today.

What other photographers do you love? I love William Eggleston. I'm such a broken record!

Where can we see more of your work? On the old website and I also add a bunch of random personal work to my tumblr

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