Thursday, May 17, 2012

Feature Interview - Life Is Art: Cat Lane

Next up we have my friend Cat Lane, her work is pretty darn stunning!


'I slowly realised that the portraits stood out to me more so than anything else '

1. Fill me in on your background, where are you from and how did you get in to photography?

 My name is Cat and I'm a 21 year old fashion and portrait photographer from Bedford in the UK. I started taking photos towards the end of my school years - I spent a lot of time off of school due to an illness and I think the boredom was what inspired me to pick up a camera, start experimenting and photographing pretty much everything! I slowly realised that the portraits stood out to me more so than anything else, and that combined with a love for styling and fashion lead me to what I shoot today.


2. Who has influenced you the most in terms of photography?

 My fiance and photographer friends, most definitely. Their constant support through both the lows and highs of my photography has kept me going, and they always inspire me to keep pushing myself.


'Self-portraiture will always have a place in my heart!'

3. What is your favourite style of photography (Self portraiture? Fashion? Documentary)?

 Fashion and editorial is my ultimate favourite, but self-portraiture will always have a place in my heart!


4. What is your process when taking photos, from getting ideas to editing?

 I find that whatever inspires an idea, I always have this picture in my head of how the shoot should look, not as separate images but as a whole.. if that makes sense? Like a scene that represents the feel of the shoot. So from there I will start planning the styling, then find the right model (where she is based will largely define the location of the shoot) and creatives to collaborate with on it. And lastly, the way in which the photographs are edited and coloured just goes back to my initial vision of the shoot also - certain colours, contrasts or techniques will always stand out and I'll just experiment with one image until I reach what I have in mind, and apply the effect to the whole set.


5. What are your tools of the trade?

 A Canon 5D Mark II and prime lenses - 50mm and 135mm. For me, nothing beats primes!


6. Where do you hope to go with your photography?

 At the moment I'm really interested to see where I can take my work in a commercial sense, but in the long run I hope to be able to concentrate on and go to bigger and bigger heights with exciting editorial projects.

'I love the way another person's photography draws you into their vision.'


7. Why do you think people are drawn to photography?

 I can't speak for others, but for me I love the way another person's photography draws you into their vision - how they see the world, or how they want to present it to the viewer.. like looking into somebody's head and seeing the subject of the photograph through their eyes.


8. What draws you to a particular model/subject? What do you look for in a model/subject?

 I'm not sure and can never really put my finger on it - some perfectly match ideas I have in my head whilst some flip the process around and can inspire a shoot instead.


9. Who are some other photographers you admire?

I can never get over how much I love Ellen Rogers' work, each image of hers is incredibly beautiful and atmospheric and I have a huge amount of respect for her entirely shooting in analogue also.


10. What is your best tip to taking a striking photo?

I think the most striking photos happen when all the elements of the image match and come together perfectly - styling, location, make up, model, everything. I'm not sure how much of this is present in my own portfolio, but I'm working on it, haha!


'I think the most striking photos happen when all the elements of the image match and come together perfectly'

11. Your photos seem to incorporate your surroundings and the elements, is this a big part of your style?

 Yes, definitely. I find the way the way my surroundings change throughout the year to be one of the most inspiring things and I love watching my and others' work change with the seasons!


12. What is your favourite photo taken by another photographer? (Link and describe why)

My favourites change all the time but I realised today that this image will always remain special to me - it's an image taken from Apollo 7 that I found in a coffee table book I bought, and it fills me with emotion every time I look at it. It reminds me just how beautiful the world we live in is.

'It reminds me just how beautiful the world we live in is.'


13. What is your favourite photo you have taken? (Link and describe why)

Again, this is something changes often but at the moment I'd say this one, black and whites are my favourite right now and I think it shows a slightly new direction I'd like to go in with my work.

14. What are some of your favourite films, books and musicians?

American Beauty is my all-time favourite film to the point where I have to limit how often I watch it - I'd watch it every day if I could but I don't want to ruin it for myself! It's a perfect combination of storyline, concept, casting, imagery and music and overwhelms me each time I watch it.


15. What has been your biggest achievement so far with your photography?

Towards the end of last summer I shot a 3-day lifestyle campaign for a jeweller and it made me realise just how my style can work in a commercial sense - it was a real boost.

'I think as photographers we should just concentrate on creating the imagery we want to!'


16. Do you think it’s hard to be original in photography? How do you keep your ideas original and fresh?

To be honest I never really think about it and just go with the flow of my ideas and inspiration.. it's so easy to get wrapped up in the worry of it all and I think as photographers we should just concentrate on creating the imagery we want to!


17. Which photographer do you think I should interview next and why?

Katie Eleanor, she not only possesses oodles and oodles of talent and imagination, but is a wonderful, inspiring soul also.


18. Do you often change a lot of the original photo in Photoshop?

I spend a lot of time and care over my skin retouching and use adjustment layers to change the colours of the image to my taste, but in terms of the original composition I really don't change that much, no drastic cropping or removing/adding objects!


19. Do you think you have an original style that is your own?

I'd like to think that I've developed my own style so far - one I hope to strengthen with each shoot I plan and photo I take!


20. Do you prefer studio or location?

Location always, and I think it will always be that way even when I have access to a studio one day! I don't think anything compares to the atmosphere a location can give an image, and the way it enables the model to interact with their surroundings.


21. If you could photograph any person alive or dead who would it be and why?

The list is endless! Lindsey Wixson, Lily Cole, Scarlett Johansson, Keira Knightley, Codie Young.. particularly in love with Anais Pouliot right now too!


22. You seem to get a lot of questions about your retouching skills, can you give us any good tips?

 Mainly don't touch the blur tool and retain as much skin texture as possible - dodge and burn techniques are a godsend when it comes to realistic looking retouching.


23. Give us the skinny, what's the next project you've got coming up?

Finally being able to do all the shoots I've had to put off because of April's terrible rain! It's been driving me nutty waiting all this time but the weather is starting to look up, so fingers crossed, haha!


24. Which actor would play you in the film of your life?

They don't look anything like me but I'd love Keira Knightley or Kate Winslet!


25. What did you want to grow up to be when you were a kid?

A horse riding instructor when I was very young, and then in my early teens, a fashion illustrator.


Told you she was good ;)

Check out more of Cat's work on her Flickr and her addictive Blog


  1. Go Cat! Love her work <3

    Thanks for conducting & sharing all those inspiring interviews, Alexandra :)

  2. Your blog provided us with valuable information to work with. Each & every tips of your post are awesome. Thanks a lot for sharing. Keep blogging..
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