Tantalum: Hey Billy can you tell us a little about the shoot you produced four or 4th issue?
Billy Winters: I was living in Los Angeles for the summer and decided to do a story in West Hollywood at Le Parc Suite Hotel as it was very art deco and decadent and i always like shooting period piece stories- and this was the one era that i had not done yet..
Tantalum: What kind of direction did you give the wardrobe stylist, hair and makeup artists?
Billy Winters: Actually I did the styling myself for this story using LA based designers: Olima Atelier and Sterling Capricio Couture the later's shop was right in my neighbourhood that i discovered one day. When I picked up some pieces from Olima, I backed my car Bessie into a cement pole and did some serious damage to her. Then I got two numbers from Le Bra Lingerie on North Robertson Avenue who has amazing one of a kind lingerie items and has been featured in Italian Vogue, etc. So between these three, the look sorta fell into an old Hollywood kind of feeling when all put together, which looked great at the art deco hotel. When Paul Anthony Castro from Aim Artists saw the hotel and wardrobe, he just went with his knowledge of hair and makeup and "did his thing." I trust his instinct immensely and he works fast too! Then the gorgeous Eden from Next Models completely fit the part of an old glam Hollywood diva with her long neck and exquisite natural stance and elegance.
Tantalum: What inspires you?
Billy Winters: Beauty, light, color, order, symmetrical features, nature, flowers.
Tantalum: In general, during a session, how many pics would you say you take to find "the right one"?
Billy Winters: Not that many. Often the talent (models) will usually say, "are you sure you got it?" I don't like wasting time. I get the shot quickly as i know what i want in my mind beforehand.
Tantalum: How do you decide on locations & subjects?
Billy Winters: It all just always falls together cohesively. I don't really plan things out that much although for this story i did an afternoon of location scouting/hotel scouting. We always end up "winging it."
Tantalum: Some photographers say that there is such a thing as someone really having a "natural eye" for photography? what do you think?
Billy Winters: I agree- either you have an "eye" or you don't. This is for many metiers, not just photography. I am one of the lucky ones.
Tantalum: I love the images with the wonderful images with the saturation of color. What makes you choose to shot something in Color and sometimes in B&W?
Billy Winters: I (am sad to say that) I shoot digital now and it is all shot in color. Converting it into b&w can change the entire feeling. It just all depends upon the image and how it renders. Sometimes they just look stronger in color, others in b&w. Guess that doesn't really answer you question......
Tantalum: Do you have other creative outlets?
Billy Winters: I like to garden, and decorating my home and collecting vintage colored glass, lamps and furniture. My apartment is completely full now and there is no room for any additional finds, although I just bought a great bevel edged mirror for ten bucks in Sacramento...Which do you get the greatest satisfaction from? Definitely photography for sure, especially fashion- although this Thanksgiving I walked around shooting the autumn saturated foliage in Sacramento with long exposure and movement in the lens and made some gorgeous images that were very painterly- that was really fun and satisfying.
Tantalum: As an artist do you find yourself drifting away from one form of media to another, devoting your creative forces souly to the media at hand. Or do you try to divide up your time more equally?
Billy Winters: No, just photography for now although i just started dabbling in the video-thing..... Nowadays photographers have to do other forms of art to compete. Things have changed.
Tantalum: What is the ONE lasting impression you want to leave in your photos?
Billy Winters: That the viewer sees and feels the beauty and for them to remember my images; for the viewer to say "wow" to themselves and maybe smile