Multimedia Laboratory

Interview with photographer | Lane Coder

When did you first become involved in photography and why?

I was 19 years old living in New York City, studying fine art at the Parsons School of Design.  A friend ,who was a very successful fashion/art photographer, introduced me to photography through a Polaroid SX70 camera.  He was taking long exposures of random people in the street at night and the results were mind blowing to me.  They looked like small paintings.  Soon after that, I never really picked up a paintbrush or pencil again.

Who are some of your favorite photographers and why do you admire their work?

Joel Sternfeld, Stephen Shore, William Eggleston, Mitch Epstein, Wolfgang Tillmans, Andreas Gursky, Nadav Kander, Corrine Day, Martina Hoogland Ivanow, Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott, Inez van Lamsweerde, and Vinoodh Matadin.  The reason why I listed these people and in this order is kind of congruent with my photography. I’ve always been interested in different genres of photography and have never really been content shooting just one thing.  I’m constantly inspired by fine art photographers, fashion/commercial photographers, and the people that blur the line between the two.  I’ve always tried to do this in my own work.

What is your greatest experience as a photographer?

Revisiting a job for the New York Times Magazine that one of my previously mentioned photographic influences declined to continue.  Being able to be considered a photographer that can fill those shoes was definitely a defining moment in my career.

What equipment do you prefer to use and why?

Until the past 3-4 years, I exclusively used two types of medium-format film cameras.  One which I would keep on a tripod at all times and another that was handheld.  But now I use a wide range of cameras.  It helps diversifying my work and keeps things fresh and interesting.  Lately I’ve been using a lot of digital SLR cameras for still photos and video.  I still use medium format film cameras, 35mm point and shoot cameras, and most recently, I’ve been experimenting with a 3×4 antique polaroid camera that I’ve really been loving.

Describe your editing process (i.e. How do you go about selecting, retouching and printing your photographs?)

Digitally, I do all my editing in Adobe Bridge via three rounds of selection.  Then we begin color management and retouching and piecing the stories together.  With film I generally edit straight from the negative and then I scan the film either on an Imacon or Creo scanner and begin retouching from that point.  I print through a professional lab either on a Polytronic digital c-print machine or a LightJet.

What sets your work apart from that of others?

I can only speak for myself and my process.  I try to always keep my photography true to myself.

What are your plans and aspirations for the future regarding photography?

I’d like to continue on the track I’ve paved for myself where I can show my personal work in galleries and potentially get books published, while also being able to work in the commercial world doing fashion, advertising, and editorial.  This hasn’t always been easy throughout my career and trying to balance the line between those two worlds can be very difficult.  I am also working diligently on developing my career as a director.  I just recently directed my first music video and I am looking forward to my career in directing.


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