Focus Interview: The Breathtaking, Otherworldly Landscapes Of Louise Coghill
The emerging WA photographer has an incredible-looking exhibition coming up.
Up-and-coming Perth photographer and artist, Louise Coghill, will launch an exhibition of conceptual portraits that showcases WA's already pretty insane-looking landscapes at her upcoming exhibition, The Dreamer. The series follows an "unnamed woman as she tackles the emotional turmoil of life and it's many ups and downs". The shots we've seen so far are absolutely breahtaking, and we sent her a bunch of questions to learn more about her.
Check it out below, along with a few examples from The Dreamer Exhibition, which launches at Kidogo Art House, Bathers Beach in Fremantle on Friday 24 March (opening night, 6:30-8:30pm) until Thursday 30 March (more info HERE).
Where are you? What are your immediate surroundings?
I’m currently sitting in my messy bedroom in Perth, surrounded by clothes on the floor and other artist’s pictures waiting to get framed and go up on the wall.
Can you tell us a little about your upcoming exhibition?
‘The Dreamer’ is a bit of a mystical, colourful series of conceptual portraits I shot in the South West. It follows a woman in a red dress as she journeys through some strange and surreal landscapes. I wanted the photos to represent her emotional state, and there’s a mixture of some nice calm and colourful shots, and some dark, moodier ones. I was going to name them after what they represent, but then I decided I want the viewer to be able to attach there own meaning to the images.
Please describe a typical day.
I don’t really have a typical day, I go through phases. Right now I’m in the healthy, productive phase we’re I get up at 6:30, go running, head to a cafe and get all my work done. But last month (slash yesterday) I was in my Netflix phase where I would binge-watch a show and not leave the house for two days. (How good is West World).
There is no real in-between.
How would you describe your work? And who (or what) are your biggest creative influences?
Colourful and whimsical. I like capturing the world how I see it and feel it, not necessarily how it actually is.
I love Perth local, Nick Cooper’s work because he doesn’t fit into the usual colour palette like myself and his landscapes are so lush.
Laura Zalenga is the one who first got me into shooting portraits. Her work is amazing and filled with emotion.
Nirrimi from Fire & Joy, because of her intense honesty and beautiful soul.
What gear are you rocking?
I’m a Canon girl - Canon 5d Mk iii. My favourite lens is the 50mm, but I also rock the wide for some sexy star shots and my 70-200mm zoom for some added whimsy.
Three favourite spots on the web to browse?
I considered lying and trying to sound cultured, but I was just talking about how much I love honesty. So I actually spend the majority of my time on Imgur, stocking up on memes, and the rest of the time I creep on Instagram.
Though lately i’ve been reading a lot of stories on The Adventure Handbook. It’s a great way to get some inspiration for travelling in a new and purposeful way.
What is something new you have noticed or learned recently?
I finally took the time to go out and capture a cloud trail. Basically you spend 30 minutes or so photographing the sunset, put all the photos together and you get this colourful, magical looking creation. That and star trails are something I want to utilise in my next creative series.
What in your opinion makes a beautiful image? What elements need to exist in a moment for the image to be successful?
There are really no rules. For me it changes all the time. If i’m taking a portrait it depends on the person, the emotion, the weather. But I guess the key for me is lighting. If you have good light, you can make anything look beautiful.
What do you enjoy most about your hometown?
I LOVE Perth. I love how much the art scene is exploding. But my favourite thing is definitely how easy it is to drive to an amazing beach, to an amazing landscape, and then drive for 20 minutes out of town and you can shoot the stars. We’ve got everything we need in the city but it’s so easy to get out into nature.
Do you listen to music when you are shooting? Is it for you or the model?
It’s usually just me, my model and the sound of me shouting ‘oh my god this is amazing!’ If I’m alone with a landscape I’ll listen to some chilled out folky tunes, and if it’s for a job then the model puts on some music to get them in the mood. At the last one we belted out some Beyonce.
Three of your friends we should check out?
Grace Sanders: She’s the model in my photos but she’s also a pretty killer musician.
Zal Kanga-Parabia: Musician/photographer/lover of the stars and all-round inspiring human.
James Giddy: Amazing artist.
What’s next? What have you got planned for the rest of the year and what do you want to achieve in the near future?
I’m off to Nepal in three weeks. I have a one way ticket and i’m hoping I can hit up Mongolia as well, then I’ll be saving up for a road trip through America.
And for the future, i’ve got a new concept for a creative series i’m itching to get started on.