Nov 14, 2018
Kit is a young British self-taught photographer who works mainly with Black & White film due to his passion for the darkroom. To Kit, printing in the darkroom is a great source of inspiration, which pushes him to try new things and constantly learn different stuff. In his series London, we can see Kit's passion for light, where nocturnal contrasted images show the well-known British capital in a new and interesting perspective. Lonely figures, commuters and passers by dance in front of his camera, giving us an idea of the frenetic life of the city and at the same time inviting us to reflect about topics such as loneliness, urban life and work in the present times.
am - First of all thank you very much for your contribution to our project. Can you please introduce yourself for us?
KY - My name is Kit Young. I am a self-taught photographer and darkroom printer, currently based in Norfolk, England. I am also a member of AllFormat, a diverse, global collective of fifteen dedicated photographers who came together through a mutual love of film.
am - How did you start in photography?
KY - I first dabbled with film photography and darkroom printing when I was about 10. I then got into digital photography whilst I was studying at university but the intangibility of it all really got to me so I sold all my digital gear and bought a Leica M3 and a 50mm lens just before graduating. I then moved to France where I was fortunate enough to join a Paris-based group of photographers led by Gérard Moulin. It was during this period that I began to explore the infinite possibilities of darkroom printing and the juxtaposition of seemingly unrelated moments in time to create visual patterns as part of series-based work.
am - What attracts you about B&W photography?
KY - In a nutshell: the darkroom. Without it, I don't think I would bother to shoot film. The darkroom provides much inspiration and it pushes me to try new things, make mistakes, learn and start all over again. It is in the darkroom that I am able to spend time with my photographs and hone the practice of printing. Indeed, taking photographs and printing photographs are two very different skills, and yet a kind of symbiosis does exist. In my case, the photographer is lenient, impulsive, instinctual and sometimes irrational, while the printer is uncompromising, calculated, resolute and mostly rational. The printing feeds into the shooting and vice versa.
am - What inspires your work?
KY - A flippant answer would be 'light', and my appreciation thereof. I find creating series-based work to be most rewarding for the way it lets you explore nuance and ultimately offer something more wholesome to viewers. Recently, I worked alongside Bergger Editions in France for the best part of a year to put together my first ever publication, Paris Couplets. I found the entire process of making a booklet with a publisher to be an incredibly inspiring experience. To have another set of eyes look at my work, make new associations and suggest fresh rhythms was a real privilege.
am - Who are your favourite photographers / artists?
KY - Rather than quoting a long list of names which countless other people have quoted before me, some of my favourite photographers are actually members of AllFormat Collective: James Moreton, Jacqueline Badeaux, Mikael Siirilä, Lorenzo Ferraro, Ioana Marinca, François Constant, Davide Padovan, Nick Mayo, Jahan Saber, Sadie Bailey, Giulia Agostini, Cameron Hoerth, Raph Hurwitz and Tatsuya Totsuka. In addition to AllFormat, many brilliant photographers are posting regularly on Instagram, including: Pete Gardner, Ty Philips, Silas Slack, Mike Mueller, Jerome A, elmarcfoto, Julia Andrés, Tyler Bervy, Sean Welsh, Benjamin MacMaster, Laëtitia Deleuze, Emily Brewer, Brendan Toews, Claire Louria, and many more... I always feel inspired by those who create and are willing to share their creations on a regular basis. I also get a great deal out of being able to interact with people over Instagram. The platform plays host to a nice, small community of like-minded people.
am - What’s your favourite movie?
KY - I haven't watched a good film for a long time now (too busy in the darkroom!) but one of the last great films I saw was "Cinema Paradiso" directed by Giuseppe Tornatore.
am - What is your favourite photo book?
KY - Probably "Black, White and Things" by Robert Frank. It's exquisite, a masterpiece!
am - Thank you very much for your time and your contribution to analog magazine.
KY - Thank you for having me!
All images © Kit Young