Tumblr | Instagram: @hanlaam
Houston, TX, USA
|Who or what sparked your interest in photography?|
I got my first point and shoot camera in 8th grade to take pictures of myself and my friends as the year ended and I love it to pieces. Literally. I wore it out! I also quickly outgrew the features on the tiny camera - I didn't have full control over technical aspects like aperture and shutter speed. I later upgraded to a cheap SLR and I still use it. I love the sound it makes. Cliché, but, I love how I can literally capture a moment forever.
|Who are some of your favorite photographers? (Please provide links to their website/Flickr/blog)|
Tamara Lichtenstein - I admire the fact that she uses film to capture the feminine form so elegantly. Her work is innocently intimate without being overtly showy. Ann He - I absolutely adore the concepts she comes up with and her use of lighting and color is amazing.
|Do you have any formal education in photography or are you self taught?|
I did take photography in high school for 2 years. But I never photographed "fashion" or portraits during that time. I came out with a working knowledge of space and form (2D Design). I also did a lot in the darkroom with black and white photography which is why I still try to keep film in my bag.
|Is photography your career?|
Nope. I just do it for fun and for the wonderful people I meet.
|Are you currently working on any photography projects?|
I've been working on a series with my sister called "through her eyes." It's more location based. That's all I'll say about it until I release it.
|If you won a $400 million lottery how would you use it?|
I would plan a trip around the world with my awesome sister. Oh, and I would update my camera gear as well.
|What is your favorite thing to photograph and why?|
Faces! The expressions. The feeling. The lighting playing with their features. People are so much more interesting to photograph than inanimate objects.
|Where do you find and how do you instruct your models?|
I started off just taking pictures of my sister and my friends. I now use model mayhem. More recently I have found contacts through other models and people that I meet. Also, I don't really instruct models. If I have an idea of what I want a photograph to be like in my head then I will jump in and model it myself to show what I want. But a lot of times the model will just know what to do.
|Do you listen to music while you shoot? If so, what is on your photo shoot play list?|
I've ben meaning to! I'd surely get some shots with more feeling that way! It really depends on the location; I'm planning a shoot inspired by Virginia Woofle and we'll probably be listening to some old tunes. Alot of Florence + the Machine, Ben Howard, Alt-J - all relatively tame and soft, still with a beat.
|What kind of camera(s) do you use? What is your "go to" lens? Do you have a preferred brand/type of film?|
I shoot with a Canon Rebel XS for digital and a Canon A2e for film. I purposefully have two Canon bodies to use with a Canon 50mm f/1.4; I pretty much only shoot with that lens.
|What do you do when you are feeling uninspired?|
I hop in the car, put my laptop in my bag, and go to the library. I thumb through interior design books, fashion books, cookbooks. I like scrolling through blogs too. If you can't find something inspiring in the thousands of books there, then you have a problem.
|Future photography goals?|
I'd like to be able to shoot with as many people as I can. I've shot with some amazing people and I can't wait to meet even more inspiring people along the way. I don't want to be a professional photographer. I feel like making photography a job will make it into a chore and I like my photography to be an escape for me.
|Describe a day in your life that includes photography:|
I've only shot with a team a couple of times. I'll set a date and location and meet up with the models at the location. They usually bring along a few changes of clothes. We'll shoot and walk around exploring. Usually the location is new to me. I feel like with a place I don't know, everything feels more interesting. We'll chat and shoot a bit more. Afterwards we'll say our goodbyes and often plan on shooting again.
|What does your work flow consist of?|
Well, post-shoot, If I shoot digital, then I'll upload all my photos on my laptop then begin sifting through them. Some might be out of focus, or an expression isn't right. The ones that I pick to edit usually just stand out. Then I'll play around with them in photoshop (just editing colors and curves). With film, I have them processed at the drugstore and I scan them myself. I just clean up the dust and scratches and that's pretty much it for my film photographs.
|Three interesting facts about yourself?|
What, if anything, do you do to promote your photography? Approximately how much time do you spend per day/week on promoting your photography online?
I'll post a few pictures on facebook and instagram to share with people I know. I keep a tumblr as my portfolio and I have a few followers who will reblog. Sometimes if I feel a series is strong enough, I'll submit it to a few online magazines. It really varies on how much I've shot.