UK-based Kid Circus is part of a growing group of fashion photographers who are choosing to shoot film over digital, as attitudes towards film photography in this fast-paced industry take a u-turn. We talked to Kid Circus about his recent photoshoot using the Lomography 800 Color Negative film and he shared some insights into shooting high-end fashion campaigns.
Hi Kid Circus, tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m a London-based fashion and portrait photographer, though I actually trained in performing arts and my background before photography was DJing and music production. I’d say my photography journey started from the moment I got my first ever iPhone. The ability to not only take decent photographs but edit them on the plethora of phone editing apps that were being released really solidified my entry into photography, before I moved on to my first proper camera. I've done the gamut of photography genres such as architecture, landscape, and street photography before I got into people, portraits, and fashion.
You decided to shoot mainly with film for your fashion shoots, tell us why you made that decision?
I had started to bring a 35 mm camera to my fashion shoots just to capture maybe 10% of the content of my images on film. That way I had the backup of the digital process in case I screwed up what I shot on film. Things really changed as soon as I learned to shoot on medium format film. There was just something about the quality of images, the reliability of the cameras, and the lovely tonality of the scans that really gave me the confidence to shoot more film. Also, when it comes to the selection process, when I shoot an editorial completely on film this can be the difference between culling from say 100 scans vs 1000 digital images.
Have you seen a sharp shift in attitudes towards film photography, specifically in the fashion world over the last 6 years?
Absolutely! It’s incredible what a difference a few short years make. I would put it down to the emergence of newer photographers who have become known for shooting on film for their campaign work, some favorites of mine being Ronan Mckenzie, Vicky Grout, Campbell Addy, Olivia Rose, Tyler Mitchell, and Mark Clennon. People have really started to appreciate (once again) the colors, tones, and quality of images that are shot on film.
How did you find shooting the Lomography Color Negative 800 film in the studio setting?
I was really intrigued to see how the Lomography Color Negative 800 film performed in a studio setting, as I feel like most of the Lomo 800 images I’ve seen have been shot outdoors. I must say, having shot all of the film stock in a studio setting using flash strobes, it has performed excellently.
Any advice for other photographers preparing to shoot film for a big campaign?
As with any client job, it pays to make sure you’re really clear about the brief/concept and therefore the kinds of images you intend to capture, especially given you’re working with a finite resource where every shot costs money. I’d also ensure you shoot at least some of the images on digital, so you have a backup if anything goes wrong with what you shoot on film.
What's coming up for you next?
I have some lovely portrait projects I’m looking forward to shooting that aren’t strictly fashion. I do love the challenge of working with people who aren’t used to being photographed. I’m also slowly dipping my toes into the world of video, something I’ve been meaning to get into for ages. I’ve recently shot some editorials in which I’ve had a DOP/videographer capture fashion film content. As this is an additional visual element that brands are increasingly incorporating into their campaigns, I want to be able to add this to my skillset.