Female Film Photographers You Should Know: Tasha Hylton
Tasha is a brilliant self taught photographer born in Gloucester and based in Bristol, UK.
Her work is mainly focused on capturing portraits with a pronounced editorial and fashion style where she mixes natural light with warm colours and careful compositions.
Recently Tasha started an intimate project in which she documents the struggles of women who work by themselves/for themselves and the self-care and mental well being routine they had learned to put in place over the pandemic
♦ How would you introduce yourself to someone who just met you?
Hey, I am Tasha (with a big smile on my face) 🙂
♦ What is the memory that you most fondly remember from your childhood?
Just how much of an outgoing kid I was & the things I had the confidence to do. I had no fear to perform, dance, sing & express myself. I was such a carefree child with big dreams. I thought anything was possible!
♦ Who were the most influential people during your teens and how did they influence you?
I would say a women named Nel who was the mum of a family I used to babysit for in my late teens. They all soon became second family to me! She always had such wise words to share with me & always positive things to say about my aspirations in life & supported them. I always knew I could talk to her about anything, and it really helped give me the confidence to listen to & trust myself more for many years.
♦ How did you get in the world of analogue photography?
I started shooting digital in 2016 and it was not until 2019 when Bristol Portraits organised a film photo walk meet up that my interest sparked to give it a go even thought using film cameras was the only option when I was a kid it never even crossed my mind when I started out. So, I bought a cheap little point & shoot camera off ebay to try join in. It was honestly the dodgiest working camera that I was not even sure if it was taking the picture, but it got the roll done eventually. After getting the film developed & seeing the results, I immediately fell in love with analogue photography. I then invested in more reliable camera & taking the time to learn how to use it whilst trying out different film stocks.
♦How would you describe the photography you do? What is your work focused on?
I work more in portrait; fashion & lifestyle photography with my digital work & always try to add a roll of film in too when I can. And I also like to document/visual story tell when taking trips to new places or events the resonate with me too. Like my London Wonders & Home Comfort series on my website. So, I guess I would say my work focuses on things that around me really as I am still figuring things out, I guess.
♦ Are you working on any photographic project at the moment?
I kind of started a little project recently of wanting to document the struggles of women who work by themselves/for themselves & the self-care routine they had learned to put in place over the pandemic to keep themselves on track to do their work & care for their own wellbeing mentally. I know first hand how hard that was & still can be! So, I would like to talk to the women around me that experienced the struggles & emotions of that life. I would like to try to document that through images & words if I can. I need to try to pick that back up whilst the good weather is here for those nature shots.
♦ Is there any photographic project that you would like to do but have not done yet?
I would like to do something more personal & educational around my family background/heritage as I have such a big family & there is still so much more for me to learn. I would also like to do something around natural afro hair love/self-love. It has taken me many years to appreciate & love my natural hair more & I would love to celebrate that through images somehow.
♦ Which camera and which film do you use the most in your photography and why?
I mainly use my Canon AE-1 as I enjoy using manual settings & focus. I find a form of stillness when concentrating to focus. I am not 1 of those people that solely uses 1 trusty film stock all the time. I feel like I still have many more to try, so I do like to mix it up. BUT I would say if I were playing it safe Kodak Portra 400 for portraits. And I do really enjoy using ilford hp5 plus 400 for my visual story telling. .
♦ Who are your biggest influences?
Very recently I have grown admiration for Beyonce. Seeing her work ethic & the opportunities she creates for black people when touring & doing projects is amazing. The visuals & photography I have seen over the last few years have always amazed me. Very inspiring & she is on my vision board to be 1 of those lucky photographers that gets to photograph her 1 day.
Gordon Parks for his inspirational & respected photography career. I am inspired by how he captured & documented culture & things that were being experienced around him over the years to share with the world. Along with knowing he dipped into the fashion photography world too.
And if I take it all the way back to my childhood then I would have to add Michael Jackson! Being a huge fan of him & his music helped me to be that carefree child I mentioned earlier.
♦ What’s the best advice you would give yourself when you started in the world of film photography?
Research & invest in a decent camera straight away. Do not take chances on cheap plastic ones! And take your time because film is expensive girl!
Find more about Tasha’s Work?