Text and Interview: Amber Robson, founder of SoundVisionClub.com
Hanging out with Arianna Lago
“Colour has always been a predominant element in terms of the way I organise things visually, and the way to connect emotionally with images… Generally I prefer to work with sequences versus series, It’s a way for me to look for a narrative, to find a meaning and join the dots of time with images and memories.” – Arianna Lago
Arianna Lago is an Italian born, London based self-taught photographer with an interest in visual sequences. With a love of travel, she can often be found wandering around the edges of the urban city, looking for inspiration in the oddities of her surroundings. More recently her style has developed to compositions in which she applies a strong sensibility to colour palettes. Her obvious joy for colour and light sees her images elegantly ranging from a delicate and fragile, to bold and vibrant compositions.
What is it that compels you to travel to certain locations? What attracts you to a particular place when taking photographs?
I mostly tend to pick my travel location based on traditions and costumes. I need the cultural shock factor as I love the element of surprise. I love places with strong light and colours that tantalize my senses. I am not after luxury so much and I like to expose my self to meet people with different lives and stories
How has travel changed your vision of the world, yourself and your art?
I guess travelling helps me keep a perspective in the bigger picture. It helps me remind myself to stay humble and that I don’t need to possess so many material things. It is a way for me to find inspiration as it is the ultimate way to change my routines and patterns in favour of serendipity and the unexpected.
Would you pick out one image of yours and talk us through it and why you chose it? Tell us everything you would like to about it.
This image was taken somewhere in Italy during summer. The location is a very small spring water basin in the countryside in the north east. I love the illusion of this scenario resembling a tropical location but it isn’t at all. This spot is mostly attended by those who cannot afford to go on holiday in the summer. I loved the feeling of joy that was expressed by these kids playing in the water so I fetched my camera and snapped.
What equipment do you use? How do you edit you images?
I use both digital and 35mm with fixed lenses. Nikon F100 and Nikon D750. I love both. Film has a richness and quality of its own that digital doesn’t have. I enjoy the process of scanning and archiving my film and have a certain tactility that is missing in digital photography. I love the consistency of the results but also the element of surprise you have with film. It’s a little bit about trusting yourself and also being open to accidents.
But I also love the freedom of control I have with digital photography in processing my own files without relying on other people or a lab… depends what i am shooting for for editing.. Generally I prefer to work with sequences vs series. My editing is often retrospective. It’s a way for me to look for a narrative, to find a meaning and join the dots of time with images and memories.
Having studied music and sound, how has music influenced your photography? Tell us about any music videos that have affected and inspired you.
Bjork has always inspired me and has always been a muse. When I saw the 90’s the video for Human Behaviour directed by Michelle Gondry I fell in love with her and her vision. I was overwhelmed by her originality and I felt I could related to the way she connects with nature through out her work.
It’s very interesting that you ask strangers to become subjects in your work. Could you tell us what attracts you to certain people? How do you direct the subject if at all?
I am interested in talking to people and hearing their stories. I have a predisposition to engage with strangers. I guess it’s part of my Italian culture where it’s normal to exchange glances or even greet each other, especially if you are sharing the same space on public transport…. but it’s very different here in the uk where you risk your life if you look at someone for too long. I don’t really creep up on people so much, it works wonderfully for some but maybe I don’t often have that audacity and speed. My equipment is very intrusive and heavy so my process is quite slow too. I usually politely ask my subjects if I could take a photo at the compromise of losing some spontaneity. I spend some time and talk to them until I get the shot and a little bit of their story.
Any upcoming plans or projects you’d like to share?
At the moment there is a lot of potential for collaborations brewing but nothing concrete that is worth mentioning yet! I don’t want to jinx it .
Any advice for emerging photographers?
My advice to emerging photographers is to shoot every day and look for inspiration outside of the internet.
In terms of training I am self-taught.. apart from a short course on black and white photography and a short course on studio lighting- but that was in Spanish and I couldn’t speak the language…hahaha!
Thanks Arianna! ♥
Have a browse through Arianna Lago’s portfolio here.
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