Welcome to this weeks Artist Spotlight. Today we are featuring the work of Sarah Abramson. Sarah is a 27 year old photographer based out of San Pedro, CA. “I enjoy knocking on strangers doors, eating yummy food, painting, and being in the presence of pretty much any kind of animal. Not fish though.” – Sarah
Sarah is no stranger to the blog. She has submitted several times to our assignment post. You can see more of her work online at the following links.
*All images taken with a Polaroid SX-70 and Impossible Project 600 film.
How did you get into instant photography?
I used to take Polaroids of my friends in high school. But I didn’t start seeing it as a useful medium until college. My good friend bought me a SX-70 Polaroid camera for my birthday and a whole new world opened up for me. A Polaroid camera that has selective focus! I was thrilled.
What is your favorite camera used for instant photography?
My SX-70, hands down.
What instant camera have you not shot with, but would love to try?
I’d really like to play around with an 8×10 camera with a Polaroid back. I have a 4×5 that when I was forced to use, I hated but, have come to love. I just like the idea of such a large negative, a big area of light sensitive material pointed at my choice of scenery gets me pretty excited.
What’s your favorite Impossible film or pack film type?
I love the 600 color frames edition. I actually just started working on a mini series called Aurora Borealis using those and Impossible Projects new instant lab. I’m a little obsessed…
How have you incorporated instant film into your regular workflow?
I mean, instant film IS my regular workflow haha. Up until recently I almost exclusively shot with instant film. When I occasionally get hired to shoot freelance stuff I’ll use my digital but other than that it’s film all the way. I’m currently working on my hatred of digital cameras.
How would you describe your voice or vision with instant photography? (does it differ from your other work?)
I don’t feel like it differs very much from when I shoot with anything else. I guess the vision or concept behind my work is something that makes me uncomfortable to talk about. Not because of content, but because art, my art, is where I’m most vulnerable and anytime that happens it can be pretty scary. Also, sometimes concept isn’t that easy to explain. If I’m forced to say I guess it would be the magic in every day life. Because there’s a lot of it but we become so desensitized that it starts becoming silly to believe in things like that.
Any personal projects we should know about?
Yes! A few months back I realized how much I adore and value all my good art/photography books. The pages are always there and ready to inspire. In a way, you own those images. For example, I feel a special closeness to all the particular photos of Francesca Woodman that are in the one book I have of hers. I realize it sounds selfish, but it’s similar to the way I feel about Polaroids. It’s tangible art. It’s something you can touch and hold and in some twisted sense of the word, you can own that art, those images or more specifically (when you’re strictly talking about photography) that moment.
With this realization I started piecing together an art magazine. We go to print next week. It’s called “Slow Toast” and it’s effin amazing. I don’t want to spoil anything but “Slow Toast” issue one will be featuring artists such as Kira Roessler (bass player in Black Flag), Ed Templeton, and Ahndraya Parlato. Who actually pertains to the following question…
I also have been thinking about starting this project I’ve been calling “Flash, Punch, Run”. It’s exactly what it sounds like.
(you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for all inquiries about Slow Toast!)
What other photographers do you look up too?
I’m continually inspired and in awe of Francesca Woodman, Ana Mendieta, Ahndraya Parlato, Susan Worsham, and Helmut Newton.
What advice would you give to someone just getting into instant photography?
I would tell them to start playing around with different cameras and different films (Impossible Project would be a great place to start) and then shoot what they’re naturally drawn to.
Where does your inspiration come from? Do you seek it out or wait till it finds you?
Definitely both. There’s no specific formula. But usually the inspiration found organically feels more honest.