Interview with Katherine Robbins: A Self-Portrait Artist

Rating: 4.50 based on 2 Ratings
  By Taya Ivanova
Interview with Katherine Robbins: A Self-Portrait Artist

What inspired you to start taking photographs?

I started photographing at the tender age of seventeen, thanks to a high school friend. She’s an amazing artist who got me into deviantART, where she showed me her favorite photographers, and it all started from there. I remember admiring several artist’s photographs, and soon enough I started getting my own ideas for photographs that would not rest until I executed them.

You take the most exceptional self-portraits. What does a typical self-portrait shoot consist of?

For me, it takes a few hours because my camera is so old. I can’t use a wireless remote, so I always spend a lot of time preparing, making sure that I will be in focus. I really love the light, like most photographers, so I’ll wait until a certain time of day, put on some makeup, grab my reflector, put on some music and start shooting. It could be an initial idea I had or a completely random shot but when I start shooting I forget everything else. Actually, most of the time, the ideas I had in my head change when I’m shooting. I’ll choose a different pose or theme because I start to like it more as I’m getting inspired.

What has been your biggest artistic challenge so far, and how did you overcome it?

My biggest challenge so far has just been overcoming my fears and anxiety. I think a lot of artists have that mindset that their work isn’t good, and I am one of those people. So, it’s hard for me sometimes when I don’t get an idea quite right, or if I don’t have the right model or location, but it’s good to just breathe and learn from one photo at a time.

Is there anyone you dream of photographing one day?

I dream of photographing you, Taya. ;3 If it’s someone famous, I would love to photograph Marina Diamandis. I just love her style, and when I watch her music videos I start getting ideas for shoots with her in my head.

You often combine people and nature in your art. What would be your dream location to shoot in?

My dream locations vary so often depending on my mood. But, I’ve always wanted to shoot a model in Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia. The reflections on the ground from the sky and the light just give off the feel that you’re in heaven, floating above everything else. I would love to do a shoot with that kind of ethereal feel. It’s hard to decide though. Anywhere really; this Earth is so beautiful.

What advice, in relation to photography, would you give your younger self?

Do not doubt yourself, do not be afraid to put yourself out there, find and work with other artists and advertize. If you have a concept, no matter how silly other people might think it is, just do it. Don’t be afraid of your ideas, don’t be afraid of yourself.

What do you do when you feel insecure about your artistic skills?

When I am feeling insecure, I usually watch youtube videos from my favorite photographers, or I look at my favorite photographs. I try to pump myself up, and by looking at the art I admire it revamps my passion and drives me to better myself and execute my ideas better next time.

Where do you wish to be, art-wise, in 10 years?

I would love to be a professional photographer here in Japan. But, I also have so many artists I would love to meet and collaborate with. Not only to take photos, but to meet them because all of my photographer friends are the most lovely people. I would love to say that in 10 years I have met them all.

Your photographs are made up of such elegant colors. What is your favorite editing program to use and why?

I use Adobe photoshop cs5. Years ago, I used cs2, which is old now, but it still did the trick. I love photoshop because I can do so much to a photograph with it. I’ve only ever used photoshop, so I’m used to it and I know how to maneuver with it. I use windows, so all of my favorite curves and actions I use in photoshop too.

What is the most valuable thing that photography has taught you?

Photography has taught me how to live. How to express myself and my ideas through the lens, how to push the boundaries of my dreams. I wouldn’t be who I am today if I hadn’t picked up a camera. I am so grateful for it.

You can find more of Katherine’s work on Flickr.

Rating: 4.50 based on 2 Ratings
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I'm an admirer of nature, a photographer, and a curious reader. Writing about photography and helping others improve is a growing passion of mine. My constant wish is to inspire others to be creatively fearless and endlessly curious. "Always dream bigger is my advice to you, because you can have whatever your heart desires" - Ashley Graham

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