Tasha Hylton is a photographer based in Bristol with a talent for creating natural and vibrant portraits by utilising her surrounding environment. When she is not setting up the next photoshoot she is also working on a new group to build and uplift a collective of black photographers in Bristol to help form a better community and support network within the city. We sent Tasha some Lomography Color Negative 35 mm ISO 400 and Lady Grey B&W 35 mm ISO 400 to test out and asked her about her experiences shooting portraits with this film.
Hi Tasha, please tell us a bit about yourself?
Hey Lomography! I'm Tasha, a Bristol-based photographer specialising in fashion and portraits. I shoot digital and film but film is my favourite format to shoot with.
How did you get into shooting with film and shooting portraits in particular?
I was already shooting portraits in digital anyway but I got into film when a local group called Bristol Portraits organised a film photo meetup with a few models. I was keen to try it out as I had not used a film camera since I was younger, so I bought a really cheap camera on eBay and a cheap roll of film to just dip my toes in and see how I got on. The camera was awful and I was not sure if it was even taking the photo! But once I got the scans back and I saw the images I fell in love straight away. I loved the whole aesthetic and vibe the images had that you just don't get from digital! It was then I decided to jump in and shoot more. So I bought myself a more reliable camera and have not looked back since.
What are you trying to convey with your work? And do you have any specific influences?
My work started out very urban and street style influenced. And it still is a little bit depending on what film and vibe I am going for when shooting. Now I am working on more styled/fashion shoots with females and males as I enjoy telling fashion stories through imagery.
I want my images to be in my favourite fashion magazines. I always remember those old film pictures of mine are those pictures from the parties with friends, posing in your outfit or family events so I think that influences me as to why I prefer to shoot film outside or in a cool indoor space or a homely vibe more. It gives you more freedom and adding in the surroundings just adds to that character film already has, but also to the overall image.
The Lomography Color Negative ISO 400 I have shot before on wonders around cities and I always loved the results from it. I have never shot a roll solely with a person though so I was keen to see the results. The Lady Grey film was a new one to me and after researching I learned it was a nice B&W with nice contrast so I was keen to see how it performed on darker skin.
How did you find the results?
The Lomography Color Neg film never let me down. I love how the film keeps the colours nice and vibrant but not too over saturated, especially as I have only ever shot the film on overcast days as well. So I am impressed it does not come out all dull because of that. I really liked Lady Grey too. Not too much grain and didn't wash out the model. Considering I shot it both indoors and outdoors I was happily pleased with the results. It's definitely being added to my go-to B&W film going forward. Both films are affordable and produce great results.
If you were to invent a film that would be perfect for portrait shooting what would it do?
A film with nice color and warm tones with a bit of punchy contrast. Because I mainly shoot dark skin I hate it when a film stock is more cool toned or has washed out shadows, I feel it just washes out the skin and the surroundings which is a no from me.
What's coming up next for you in 2022?
Now that is a good question. We're 3/4's into the year already. But what I hope to achieve for the rest of this year is to get my hands on my own medium format camera to be able to move up from solely shooting 35 mm. I want to dabble in shooting film with flash in the studio better this year and I want to start shooting more fashion and personal work solely on film too. I also want to start developing my own film in the darkroom more too. Wow, I better get moving then hadn't I!