We’ve met a lot of people shooting editorials for iLHP. We’ve had hockey players, actresses, rockstars, and even Harvard doctors. Now, we can add improv comic to our illustrious list of models. Meet Kayla Barr. A beautiful brunette based out of New York and Los Angeles, who so happens to remind of Lana Del Rey and can probably bright anyone’s day with her smile and charisma.
We took our plastic Holga lens around Venice Beach earlier this year, chatted, and got to know Kayla a little bit more. Here is what she had to say.
iLHP: Hi Kayla, thank you for taking the time to speak with us! Could you tell us a bit about yourself?
For most of my photo shoots, 95-99% of my images are throwaways. 1-5 in 100 ever see the light of day. But with a small handful of models, almost every image is a keeper. I’ve thought about this and I don’t know what it is.
Modeling is deceptively difficult. It’s not just about a pretty face, a clear complexion, and a 5’10” body. They have surprisingly very little to work with. A hundredth of a second. Two dimensions.
It’s not about confidence in front of the camera, because most models have that in abundance regardless of whether it’s real or not. It’s not entirely about knowing your angles and poses, as it can only get you so far. Most models will act pretty for the lens, which is fine for catalogues, but this almost always leads to something cliched and boring.
If I had to single out a single commonality among my favorite models, it would be their ability to just be in the moment. There is an honesty to just being in the moment. Since photography is often a lie, whatever truth we can capture instantly becomes gold.
Peyton Lake is one of the few models who really captures our attention. Her look is unique and memorable. She is honest and natural in front of the lens. We are proud to feature her in this interview.
iLHP: Hi Peyton, thank you for taking the time to speak with us. Could introduce yourself?
Peyton: Hi Ed, thank you for having me. I’m a 19 year old from a small town in Alaska called Fairbanks. I’ve played hockey since I was 4 years old. I played competitively since the age of 10 up until this past year, I finished up my youth competitive hockey career in California for the Anaheim Lady Ducks.
iLHP: Hockey? Right on, I haven’t worked with hockey playing models before. How did you get started in modeling?
Peyton: At first I was just kind of messing around in front of the camera for friends’ photography classes or just for fun, but now I look at it as something that I want to continue doing and hope that I become successful in.
Fifteen is a wonderfully difficult age, full of possibilities, transitions, and uncertainties. The world belongs to you, the young, to correct our mistakes and to live up to impossible expectations. But amidst the restlessness, your energy is undeniable. Your skin flawless. Your spirit disaffected. Your heart unbroken. A boldness radiates from deep within your eyes. They say, no, they shout, “Look at me. Here I am. Come and get me.”
Mikaila Storrs is a gorgeous 15 year old aspiring model based out of Southern California. iLHP had the pleasure of doing two photo shoots with her, one for our Holga Portrait series last week and another in a beautiful downtown LA studio loft. We take time in between shoots to speak with her candidly about her experiences as a young model.
iLHP: Hi Mikaila, thank you for taking the time to speak with us. Could you tell us about yourself?
Everybody is familiar with the traditional major fashion markets, New York, Paris, London, and Milan. Models and supermodels roam their catwalks and sidewalks because the fashion houses, ad agencies and magazine publishers are headquartered there. The demand for models in those cities are real.
What some don’t realize is that, on the other side of the world, Asia is a major consumer of those luxury fashion goods. China and Japan make up the #1 and #2 markets for luxury goods, with the former accounting for more than 20% of the global market alone. This means, cities like Tokyo, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, and Seoul also have a huge demand for models.
Wanting to learn more about the modeling industry in Asia, we reached out to Audrey M., a successful Canadian model who’s worked in Tokyo and Hong Kong for the past 3 years.
iLHP: Hi Audrey. Thank you for taking the time to speak with us! Could you tell us about yourself?
The right model makes or breaks a photo. As I have mentioned before, I believe 75% of the final image comes from the model, 20% from the concept/lighting/makeup (and post processing), and 5% is actually from the photographer. It’s our job as the photographer to not screw up that last 5%. Our responsibility is especially important when shooting a stunning model. I like the way Jonathan Kos-Read puts it when he was shooting a beautiful Ukrainian actress, he said:
I’d had a bit of trouble photographing her – she’s so pretty that it’s difficult to find your place as a photographer, anything you shoot looks great because she looks great, not because you did anything special.
Maya Vulgaropulos is an Aston model, an extra on AMC’s Mad Men and pursuing a career in film/television production. I had the pleasure of working with her a few weeks ago in continuation for our Annie Leibovitz series. We shot in a beautiful studio in downtown LA, she wore a gorgeous red dress, and I’m very happy with the results. iLHP had a chance to sit down and talk with her.