Call for Entries - AAP Magazine #8 / Street

Gautam Narang

British Photographer | Born: 1984
I found photography by mistake, when doing my GCSE, I was sitting in the study room, then heard a teacher describe the subjects they taught at the school. As he was going through the subjects, he mentioned photography. I thought to myself was this a subject? Photography! It's so easy, all you do is click (How, wrong I was, how very wrong) *sigh*. As a child I used to play around with cameras. I always looked through them as was interested In them. So I sat in the lesson and was very enthusiastic to start a creative art. The journey had begun. One of the first subjects I started to picture was boats .....mmm yes boats. I lived near a canal and started to photograph boats. I don't know why I picked boats, it's quite sad when I look back, but that was one of my subjects. I took thousands of photographs, trying to make the subjects look Interesting. I remember one day I took all my photographs and filled up a whole table. The obsession had started but I hadn't known. Pictures now filled my room. From the start I always wanted to show my best. I would keep a box of my best photographs and then throw away all the one's I didn't like. I always feel the next picture is my favorite picture, wanting to create new work. As I progressed through my studies, I became distracted. There were so many subjects to do and I tried them all. One week I was doing art of history, then chemistry. I then dropped them all and just focused on photography. To this day, I follow photography. I have learned a lot but I am still confused on what to do next. I love what I do, but everybody tells me go into other things. Photography is more than clicking a button. From my first trip In India I have learned more about life then I would from anything. It teaches you to look, understand and observe rather then just walk away.


All about Gautam Narang:

AAP: When did you realize you wanted to be a photographer?
Well after high school, I pretty much knew that is something that Iíve wanted to do, and itís pretty much all that Iíve pictured myself doing. Iíve tried office jobs, but they usually donít work, for example being an assistant was not a great experience. Order wold be forgotten and iím not a office type or person, the stress kills me. So iíve always gratiated to something creative.

AAP: Where did you study photography?
I studied at HND Photography at City and islington. Was the youngest student, out of the program my closet friend was Robert Harper who does amazing fashion photography. We used to chill and take pictures, it was really nice experience. Education to me, especially in the arts isnít what iíve expected it to be. The real learning happens when your out of school, and making friends with like minded pepole, finding who you are, I know it sounds like a really simple question, but you get asked ďWho are you? What is your favorite movie? Favorite Artist and etc.Ē These days things are getting competitive and to really stand out is to have strong connections with people.

AAP:Do you have a mentor?
Yes, the teacher at my school. He was in 60ís and was my best friend, he taught me a lot on business, being an artist, encouraged me, let me use his studio and gave experience in the studio with while doing still life photography. He would also make all his own equipment, was really cool learning from him. My other mentor was Jasper James, he introduced me to style. He showed me that movies could be arty, before that I didnít really watch any arty stuff. We also traveled around the UK on projects and that was a lot of fun.

AAP: How long have you been a photographer?
12 years.

AAP: Do you remember your first shot? What was it?
They were pictures of cannel boats, in England I used to live near a cannel.

AAP: What or who inspires you?
Well Edward Hooper is a great inspiration. His images feel like movie scenes, they have such a powerful mood to them. Artist have always inspired me. William Eggleston is someone would really inspires me.

AAP: How could you describe your style?
As simple and bold. Iím a huge fan of bold colors and like to keep things simple.

AAP: What kind of gear do you use? Camera, lens, digital, film?
I use the Canon 5D Mark II and my iPhone 4, itís great, you can take it anywhere and pepole arenít imitated by it, you look like a tourist. The iPhone has a look, in 20 years when we have images that are so sharp that you canít tell if your looking at something real. Images from are primitive cameras and mobile devices will be called ďRetroĒ they come with a time stamp, the actually medium is a time capsule. Itís not about the quality, itís about the message, that will last longer.

AAP: Do you spend a lot of time editing your images?
Iím not a fan of editing, iíve never liked it, only the darkroom.

AAP: Favorite(s) photographer(s)?
Steve McCurry, Willam Eggleston, Dorothea Lange.

AAP: What advice would you give a young photographer?
Go out and find your own vision, and all this likes and things mean nothing. Itís hard putting yourself out there, and pepole donít usually respond. You start to want to appeal to others and worry if you posting to much. Do it for yourself, who cares about all this fame? Who knows if these websites will be around, this data? One day, you might be recognized.

AAP: What mistake should a young photographer avoid?
Donít point fingers, point them at yourself first. Donít blame others, really look at yourself first.

AAP: An idea, a sentence, a project you would like to share?
My work is constantly changing and I like that. To keep evolving you need to keep changing.

AAP: Your best memory has a photographer?
Working on location in India, working in a old Indian palace, documenting Indian folk singers. Itís an experience the kings once enjoyed.

AAP: Your worst souvenir has a photographer?
A broken camera lens.

AAP: If you could have taken the photographs of someone else who would it be?
Steve McCurry he has my dream job

AAP: Anything else you would like to share?
Iím into film making now, really want to be a DOP or camera operator. Currently iím based in Toronto.
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