INTERVIEW: PHOTOGRAPHER - KATIE JOHNSTON

Happy-go-lucky, Carlisle based photographer Katie Johnston works with models to create outstanding portraits and fashion piece based around conceptual meanings. After painting walls all day for a up and coming exhibition, Katie sat down with me and spoke about her photography.

 Photo by Katie Johnston



1. Which photographers influenced you, and how did they influence your thinking, photographing, and career path?

Kirsty Mitchell would have to be one of my biggest influences. She creates these big fantasy scenes of escapism and nature. I love the way she hand makes everything herself, with her being a fashion designer by trade she knows how to do it all from scratch. She has influenced my thinking because she’s shown me that you don’t have to have a lot of money or huge team to be able to create those fantastical scenes, she created her images on a shoe-string budget.

2. Exactly what it is you want to say with your photographs, and how do you actually get your photographs to do that?

I want to show people that being a fashion photographer doesn’t mean being commercial or a sell out but that you can have a message and tell a narrative. Being an environmentally conscious person I want to include the narrative of nature through every image, or at least I try to. 

3. What was your career path? How did you get from being inspired by photographers to actually studying it?

My chosen career path is to be a commercial and editorial photographer. Originally I loved the work of Francesca Woodman but was also interested in fashion and I like the idea of combining art and fashion photography to make something just a little more interesting.

 Photo by Katie Johnston


4. What technology/software/camera gear do you use to keep focused on what you do best, as you photograph?
I don’t use a lot of equipment. I use my Nikon D7000 for most of my images, with a Sigma 2.8 50mm. I like having just that bit of zoom so I can get the composition right in camera a little easier but I enjoy using primes too because the focus and sharpness drastically increases for those big prints. I use mostly natural light unless I’m in the studio.


5. Can you tell me a little bit about the work displayed?
Most of my work has an environmental undertone so I wanted to talk about the relationship between technology and nature and how when the two clash something beautiful can come out of it, not always something that is damaging. In this case I was using fashion and clothes to tell that story.


6. what are your plans for future projects?
There’s few things planned in the upcoming months. First I’m going on a 3 week trip to China, where I’m going to be researching the environmental impact if the overpopulation crisis, to then turn into a bigger project when I return home. I’ve got a few mythical type shoots planned which will be a continuation of my After Eden project. And I’ve also got some commercial work coming up for a vintage clothing company Twisted Magpie, so I’m going to be a bit hectic, but al least it’ll be fun!

 Photo by Katie Johnston

Katie's work is to die for. The colours and meaning behind the work is truly inspirations, if you would like to get in contact with Katie or check out her website all is available below!




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