Brittany Borders is a Florida-based fashion photographer currently finishing her last year studying photography. We chat to Brittany about her work, her influences and her plans for the future. We are also showcasing a selection of Brittany’s work – a beautiful series of fashion images soaked in that amazing Floridian sunlight. Enjoy…
How did you first get started in photography? Who or what was it that first inspired you to pick up a camera?
My Gran was the first person that inspired me to pick up a camera. She actually handed me one of those old disposable ones that you have to wind up to take the next picture when I was two years old. She would take all of the ones I had used up between her visits (and there were always several, as I never stopped taking pictures) to get developed and then we would sit down and look over the pictures together. She was a photography teacher and so she would go over each and every photograph with me and tell me how I could have made it better, what was good about it and what was bad. It didn’t matter what the picture was of either; it could be of our dog or the trees outside or my parents but, no matter what the subject matter was, she critiqued me on it. I very quickly learned about cutting off feet and heads, how to breathe to keep the image in focus and how to gently press the button rather than mash it down. These are all things I do without thinking now, but then I ran through her list for every photograph and ended up missing some shots because of it. The art of taking a “good photograph” was a lesson well taught and one I have never forgotten.
Who are your photography icons and why?
My primary photography icons are Marina Gatti and Steven Chee. I love Gatti’s sense of artistry within her photographs and her ability to be edgy and still show emotion. Chee’s black and white work just blows my mind. I’m actually doing a body of work right now titled ‘Beauty without exposure’ and all the images are in black and white. I absolutely adore both of their styles (even though they are completely different) and I’d like to think their influence shows within my work.
Fashion photography is now a massive industry with countless photographers vying for the editorial commissions and the campaigns; what is it about your style and your aesthetic that sets you apart?
I believe I set myself apart from other fashion photographers because I primarily shoot in direct sunlight. I also like to use shadow-play to keep my images interesting and provocative. Most of my fashion work is currently being shot in black and white, which is an extremely difficult thing to do when shooting fashion, but I believe it shows the beauty of both clothing and the model. Shooting in black and white really allows me to capture a bit more of the model’s soul rather than just the clothes they’re wearing.
What have been the biggest learnings so far for you when turning photography from an interest in to a career?
I was in high school when I decided that I wanted a career in photography. My dream at that time was to work for National Geographic and travel the world bringing exotic landscapes, people and cultures right into the homes of all Americans. I still believe that there is no better way to capture a moment in time than with a photograph. What an incredible idea, right? I can point this device at a particular thing that’s happening at a particular point in time and that moment is then captured for eternity within my photograph. This idea still excites me! Now that photography actually is my career, I have learned how to capture these incredible moments in a more refined and beautiful way. I’m not sure you ever stop learning where photography is concerned and I know I’m just getting started, but I feel as though I’ve learned enough up to this point to know that photography is the right path for me. A piece of me still wants to travel the world and educate through my photographs and, who knows, maybe I will one day. The possibilities are endless.
What is next for you? Are you working on any projects that you can tell us about?
I am currently working on a body of work for my thesis project. I’m graduating this May and right now that’s the most important project I’m working on. I have also done several interviews and am looking at working for an agency in Tampa to shoot their fashion portraits, but I may do a bit of traveling first. I’ll eventually be opening my own studio in Florida. Brittany Borders’ Photography studio isn’t too far in the future to mention. I simply love what I do and can’t wait to make it my entire life.
See more of Brittany’s work at:
All images copyright Brittany Borders.