With an enchanting use of film, color, and environment, Rebecca Broodbakker's style of Photography feels both haunting and magical. Her use of the female body, against a backdrop of woodland areas creates a compelling collection that explores femininity, nature, and spirituality.
We caught up with Becky to find our more about her enchanting style...
Where are you from?
The midlands, UK.
Tell us a little about yourself
I’m a 20-something in love with the past. I dress like a 70s throwback and I enjoy my own company. I express myself through my artwork & in the way I dress.
When did you first start photography?
In my early teens. My dad is into photography and I used to use his 35mm Praktica then I saved up money from my Saturday job and got myself a DSLR and it went from there really.
Tell us about your style of photography
It’s just a big mixture of a lot of things really!
What do you like about this style of photography?
I don’t like to restrict myself to just one thing. I enjoy picking and choosing through different methods/mediums and seeing what can happen. Sometimes it ends up a giant mess but that is all part of the learning process.
Tell us about the techniques you use and why.
It’s not often that I photograph indoors. I love using natural light plus I don’t actually own any lighting gear! I grew up in the countryside and I guess it’s stuck with me. I walk a lot. My parents used to make us go on walks when we were little. At the time I hated it but I now realise the areas we used to go are one of my biggest sources of inspiration.
What message or feeling are you trying to convey in your photography?
Mostly I take pictures for myself. I pick up my camera, spend a day photographing and its cathartic for me. I studied art photography at university but sometimes it didn’t feel like that’s what I was doing. I learnt a great deal there but for me lots of it was focused on ‘perfect’ photographs - as in technically correct. They really drilled that in and sometimes I felt like I couldn’t express myself creatively despite it being an arts degree so I expressed myself politically through my work. Once I had left university I started making the pictures I do now because I had nobody breathing down my neck. I have complete freedom and I like that am not making work just to tick boxes.
You're a big advocate for using film. When did this start, and why do you love using this medium?
When I first learnt photography academically at college as a teenager, film was the first thing we used and it’s stuck with me since then. Personally I find it easier than digital. I do like using digital but I can’t ever get the images to look how I want them to whereas film creates such a beautiful effect. I develop & scan the negatives by hand too and that’s a big part of it – the fact that everything in the image was created by me, by hand all the way to the finish.
Who are the models that you use?
My friends! They are incredibly patient and have always supported my work. I owe them a lot.
What equipment are you using? E.g. camera, lenses, flash, bags, filters etc.
As I said before, I like to mix things up but my go to camera is a Canon EOS 300 35mm. I know it like the back of my hand and it’s inexpensive so I know I could replace it if I ever dropped it in a stream/river or broke it with one of my many experiments. Photography doesn’t have to be expensive. Even my negative scanner is a cheap one off eBay. I mean, I’d love to have a top range one but that’s just not possible with my finances at the minute and I’d never let money stop me from making my work.
What do you edit you photos with? E.g. software, mac/pc
It’s rare that I use software on my images. I mainly use film then scan the images in and play around with the white balance or exposure but the digital editing is minimal. This is why I’m excited about the presets from the Preset Factory – they are perfect for someone like me! The colours on them are beautiful and there is a lot of flexibility with them.
What do you do when you're not shooting?
Well, I work as a receptionist as a day job then my days off are filled with exploring outdoors and seeing my family.
Do you have a favourite photograph that you’ve taken? (And can you please send?)
It’s taken me some time to actually enjoy my images, and with most of them I am my biggest critic as many artists are! I think my favourite is this one (below) because of the bewitching energy and the shoot on the whole was fantastic, my friend/the model knew exactly what to do even before I had shared my ideas with her.