June 17, 2019

Meet 3 Nowhere Diary featured photographers & their techniques

We’ve partnered with Nowhere Diary and three Nowhere Diary featured photographers to explore their photography techniques in the style of Stranger Things.

Kim Høltermand founded Nowhere Diary in 2018 on Instagram with a huge passion for photography, sci-fi and storytelling: “Nowhere Diary promotes the work of other photographers, tell their stories, personal memories of photography and inspire others with a passion for photography to grab their camera and go out there and capture their own special moments and memories!
Grounded deep in my own childhood, growing up with Star Wars, computer games, VHS movies and film photography, I curate Nowhere Diary with roots grounded deep in the 80s, with nostalgic references to Twin Peaks / Stranger Things and 80’s sci-fi and occasionally Nowhere Diary also feature music and video inspiration that fits that mood.”

Chantal Convertini

How did you get into photography and how would you best describe your style?

I first got into photography with nothing more than being amazed at the possibility of capturing moments and memories forever. I always photographed my friends and family with no special drive to really create something that goes beyond. I realized much later that photography can do more.

My style is best described as the intention I like to capture. I love finding something interesting that visually speaks to me. It’s always something honest and real and I want to combine both. It can be the visual and the emotion I have in front of me or within myself.

What would you say is the technique you explored to create this photo series?

For me it was the medium of Polaroid itself. I have never considered Polaroid for my work before and I fell in love with it with every picture I took. The knowledge that you have a unique original in your hands is just so beautiful. I also adore the dreamy softness, the surprising colours, the contrasts and the lightness of the Polaroid images.

What was your creative process in capturing this series on Polaroid?

I had a few ideas, but in the end I just tried out everything: every light, every filter, every setting. The ideas evolved around the images already shot and I always tried to keep the concept in mind like rules on a playing field.

Could you please give us three of your top tips in creating this style of imagery?

Underexpose your images (same goes for other types of analog film)

Shoot with people who you can get weird with. This is how you get images that may have more interesting dimensions to them.

Last but not least: the light. Every light is interesting light as long as your use it right. And I know that every photographer need light to shoot, but make the light the main subject – and certainly your main guidance in your images.

How did you get involved in the Nowhere Diary Network?

Actually, it was only introduced to me with this collaboration and I’m glad about it.

Jack Garland

How did you get into photography and how would you best describe your style?

I always wanted to be a cinematographer but found photography to being a more practical field for me to pursue. My style is hard for me to talk about because it’s just how I see the world. It feels a bit dark and ominous but also lonely and beautiful, I guess.

What was your creative process in capturing this series on Polaroid?

I spent a lot of time walking around ‘70s-’80s era neighborhoods. I felt like this series needed to have that look and feel. I also watched a few of my favorite ‘80s movies to try and absorb some of those feelings and looks. This project was very close to my standard style of shooting so it came very naturally to me.

Could you please give us three of your top tips in creating this style of imagery?

Practice introspection and self-awareness when shooting. Photography isn’t just the camera you use. It’s a reflection of what you see and feel. Be mindful of where your head is at. I try to shoot based on a feeling and not necessarily on subject or objective. If the way the light falls on a tree or house speaks to you for whatever reason, try to capture it.

Spend time walking around at night with a camera and don’t be afraid to shoot without expecting grand results.

Use what’s around you! I don’t have any lighting gear or flashes. If I need a red light in a shot, I put the brake lights on my car on and point them at the subject. This will challenge you creatively and will open up new avenues of shooting.

How did you get involved in the Nowhere Diary Network?

Nowhere Diary’s Kim Høltermand and I have been big fans of each other’s work for a while now. He curates incredibly well on a platform [Instagram] that isn’t always showcasing and rewarding new discoveries and perspectives. It’s easily the best place to discover consistently new and astounding work. It was an honor when he asked me to be a part of this project.

Justin Nambiar

How did you get into photography and how would you best describe your style?

I got into photography through videography. I started filming and making skateboarding videos and that visual creativity naturally translated into photography for me.

My present-day style consists of dreamy and cinematic scenes, mainly in the urban environment at night, almost always shot on film. I get a tone of inspiration from ‘80s movies and aesthetics. There’s a certain charm and beauty to that era that I find very appealing.

What was your creative process in capturing this series on Polaroid?

My creative process consisted of having a list of predetermined locations to shoot at, all around the town I live in. The way I find these spots is by driving around and scouting (usually at night to see how the light is) and pin them on a map to revisit.

I focused a lot on relics of the ‘70s and ‘80s such as classic cars, architecture, signs, and lighting. I wanted to keep most photos moody and nostalgic in the feeling and style, and aligned with the early era of Polaroid photography.

Could you please give us three of your top tips in creating this style of imagery?

Use a tripod and manual mode, or a shutter release on normal cameras to create long exposures during the night and avoid camera shake.

Play with colored gels and external lights to paint with light in hard to see shadow areas. It’s always best to overexpose by 1-2 stops.

Take your time! There’s no rush in capturing these kinds of static moments, so be slow and thoughtful with your compositions. It’ll pay off in the quality of imagery you end up producing.

How did you get involved in the Nowhere Diary Network?

I’d been creating a lot of night series photos on Instagram and pulling a lot of inspiration from the Nowhere Diary. The work on their page is pretty amazing.. Eventually my work gained the attention of the founder, Kim, who reached out to me for this specific collaboration.