Dylan DeJong-Dougherty is a long time Film Club Member, Student Ambassador and customer of PhotoLounge. Some of his photographs have also been featured in our gallery shows! We are drawn to the vibrancy and creativity of his photographs so this week we interviewed him to get to know his process more.
PL: What got you interested in photography?
DD: My grandfather was a photographer, I grew up going through boxes and boxes of photos or magazines or camera equipment but what really interested me in photography was being able to take what I saw and clearly present it to someone else. I could never draw, or paint and I didn’t like to sit still so finding something that is visual art but also an activity with movement is really what interested me the most.
PL: What type of camera do you shoot with and what kind of film do you usually use?
DD: I shoot with a couple cameras, my Olympus Stylus 150, which I think is the perfect point and shoot. Another one would be the canon Elan ii. I love Fuji Superia and IlfordHp5
PL: There are a mix of black and white and color photos within this collection. What are some qualities that you like about both black and white and color film?
DD: It almost feels like I can capture two different worlds. When shooting in black and white I find myself being more particular about the composition or the exposure than I do when shooting in color, it takes an entire part of the process out and feels more raw to me. What I like about color film is how exciting and disappointing it can be. Whether it’s getting a roll back and being in love with the colors and the tones and contrast or it being completely flat it adds to the experience of making art.
PL: Many of your photos capture people. What do you enjoy about photographing people? What is challenging about it?
DD: I enjoy capturing the way we interact with the space and individuals around us. I’d say something that is most challenging would be the inability to always get the one shot, or the “perfect” photo, especially when shooting on the street. But that at times also makes me love it more. To me photography is very momentary and fast paced which is a way I like to live my life.
PL: Some of your photos seem staged or posed while others are more candid. These are two very different approaches to taking pictures. What are some qualities you like about each approach?
DD: I don’t like to box myself in. I use the skills developed in both staged photos, and candid photos to compose images. When I stage photos I try not to be too particular, I like to be loose and capture the subject in a more natural state which translates from my love for street photography and candid moments.
PL: Out of all of these photos, which one is your favorite and why?
DD: I’d say the one of my friend Zack standing in the field with the yellow sky. It’s a lot less staged than it looks and that’s why I love it. He didn’t actually know I was taking his photo. It was in the middle of his festival and I happened to capture that moment of him talking to a friend. It was also my first time experimenting with different colors, trying something more outside of the box I was used to. It feels otherworldly to me and out there and I like being able to make things that feel out there or different.
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