5 Questions with Lawren Simmons

1. Can you please introduce yourself, tell us where you’re from, and how long you’ve shot on film?

My name is Lawren Simmons. I am from Jacksonville, Florida, and I have shot film for around two years.

2. Why do you like to shoot on film?

For me, film renders the world the exact way I see it. The saturated colors, the grain, and not knowing what I have when I shoot it are all important factors to my photography. Film is also a fantastic teacher. Nothing hurts more than paying for your roll developing and then getting your pictures back and having none of them look how you expected. The cost alone will incentivize you to learn how to use your camera to get the best results out of your film. That was my exact situation, and I am incredibly grateful for the experience.

3. What’s your favorite gear to use (camera, lens, film) ?

Currently, I use a Canon FTB, so that is my favorite camera, but soon I am getting a Leica, so my favorite will most likely switch up soon. The 35mm lens is my favorite. The lens fits the exact way I see the world and offers a considerable amount of space in the frame. In terms of film, I love the look of Ektar 100 for its minimal grain and very saturated colors. However, Ektachrome 100 suits me perfectly. The virtually non-existent grain and the beautiful way the film renders light and color will always be my favorite.

4. Among your works, which one is your favorite? Why?

As of right now, I do not think I have a favorite picture of mine. I am particularly fond of the image with the man in the red Cornell hat. I am fond of the composition and how the reenactment troops aline with the brim of the red hat. I also love the colors featured in the images.

5. Exactly what it is you want to say with your photographs?

Similar to most photographers, I am ultimately trying to show people how I see the world. However, I am still trying to find my exact voice and what I am trying to say through my photographs. As of right now, I think there is a level of surrealism I am trying to depict within my pictures. I am drawn to images that do not look possible or that ask questions. I am carrying those ideals into a project I am doing on my home state of Florida, a place I see as abnormal and quite surreal, and I think my preconceptions about my state come out in the work. Through those preconceptions and my influences, I am finding my photographic voice that I have found leaning towards and surrealism and questions.

You can follow Lawren on instagram @bc.the.internet

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