Having swooned over her images for years, I jumped at the opportunity to interview one of my most favorite photographers, Jody Rogac, for French magazine, WOW. You can read the interview below.
It takes quite a young photographer to trust their intuition and stick with it through all of their work, both personally and commercially, and to then have clients turn to trust them with their aesthetic and values inside an image. An example of this sort of dedication paying off is that of New York based photographer, Jody Rogac. Jody’s work has been published in i-D, Monocle, NYTimes Magazine, Rolling Stone, PIG, and she has worked for clients such as Dana Lee NY, Levis and Urban Outfitters. And through all of this work you can find a beautifully similar thread; an organic reaction to her models, products and landscapes. An idea i think is currently most relative and sought after.
Yasmine Ganley- Firstly, where are you from, where do you live now?
Jody Rogac- I was born in England, grew up in Vancouver Canada, and now I live in New York.
-What pushed you towards taking photographs?
I was always very interested in making art. When I discovered photography and really enjoyed it, I felt like I had found my medium.
-I love that your fashion images still have an earthy, more emotive feel in them than most other fashion driven work that we see in the industry today- that tends to be more about the product than the lifestyle the brand embodies, is this a conscious decision from you?
I wouldn’t call myself a fashion driven photographer. I’m mostly inspired by the subjects I’m photographing and the people and places around me. In regards to my fashion work, I always try to find a balance between working with my given model and environment, and being mindful of the clothing. Because at the end of the day, a fashion shoot does need to display the clothes. What keeps me motivated is working to bring my fashion photography to a place that is personal to me. When this is allowed to happen I think a successful fashion story can be made.
-I feel that your photographs, wether they are taken in a studio or on location, have continue a strong style throughout, is there a preference to shooting inside to outside?
I don’t have a preference, I enjoy both equally and for different reasons. I like how a studio shoot is more controlled and contained, but I also enjoy a location shoot which is more spontaneous and surprising.
-How do you go about choosing your locations?
I look for somewhere that has nice light, a good color palette (whether it be indoor or outdoor), and that feels comfortable.
-When shooting portraits, how much direction do you use with your models or do you prefer a more organic approach?
While I love to let things happen organically over the course of a sitting, I also love directing. I think it’s a mixture of letting things unfold naturally, and then fine tuning that with some direction.
-Tell us about your process in choosing models to work with, teams of stylists/make up/hair etc?
Having a good team is very important to me, and finding the people you love to work with comes with some trial and error. I love to cast models who have something a little “different” about them, I love strange beauty. And I also love to cast and photograph my friends!
-How do you feel about the level of internet usage one must conduct in order to stay ‘present’ in the industry. How often are you on the internet.
The internet is a great tool for keeping in touch and sharing work, but I also feel like it can get very overwhelming. I’m always on the internet, it would be impossible to run a business these days without it. But at the same time I don’t think I spend half the time on my computer as some people I know!
-Film or Digital? What cameras do you like to work with?
Both! My favorite camera to work with is my Hasselblad. But I also love to shoot on my Nikon F3 and F100. And a 5D for more commercial work.
-Thoughts on photoshop?
I think it’s great. While I keep my personal photoshop use very simple, I think it’s a wonderful tool.
-Who’s work do you admire?
Diane Arbus, Katy Grannan, Irving Penn to name a few.
-Tell us what is in store for you the rest of this year….
Taking lots of pictures, and hopefully a bit of traveling!