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Interview with Photographer Kayla King

[XXX ZOMBIEBOY XXX]: Hello Kayla and thanks for taking the time to talk with us! Congratulations too on your recent marriage to Thor! Must be exciting for a comic inclined woman
[KAYLA KING]: The pleasure is all mine! (pun intended!)

[ZB]: So the zombie apocalypse occurs! Do you grab your gun or your camera?
[KK]: Someone needs to document such a thing, right?  I would indeed be the one riding on the back of my Viking husband with a go-pro and a machete. We are quite the team.

[ZB]: The inevitable question. What drew you into photography?
[KK]: Just a few years ago I was in a state of depression that was easy for me to succumb to. No matter how much I tried to change my outlook, there was always a lack of passion. I was vulnerable, weak, and feeble minded as any 21 year old would be. Well… I found an outlet. I developed a passion that was more than just taking photos. It was making people feel beautiful.

[ZB]: Give us a grocery list of weapons and tools of the trade.
[KK]: In my opinion, less can be more. What separates magazine-worthy photos from their less impressive counterparts isn’t a fancy camera or expensive equipment. It’s an understanding of what it takes to compose an appealing image and the confidence to execute your vision. Details like composition, lighting, and styling, which apply regardless of whether you’re using a digital camera, a simple point-and-shoot, or an iPhone is what brings the photo to life. It begins with a concept. You build from there by choosing a location, a model, a makeup artist and hair stylist if you need one. Then you determine whether you need additional equipment besides your camera such as extra lighting, backdrops, props, etc. Taking a photo is way more than just clicking a button. Collaboration is key to success! REW_5964

[ZB]: Your models come from all wakes of life. In all shapes, shades and sizes. What do you look for in a subject?
[KK]: Charisma, commitment, and reliability! Personality is more radiant than any trait of a human being. It really shows and completes the image when the model is true to him or her self. Good looks and a nice body is always a plus, but is never, ever mandatory. In fact, I love the challenge of boosting egos no matter how someone looks.

[ZB]: Is there anyone you particularly hope to shoot?
[KK]: I struggle for inspiration working with male models. I’ve reached a comfort zone and I hope to surpass these boundaries and expand my vision even more!

[ZB]: Do you collaborate with other photographers? If so whom?
[KK]: Sometimes! There are two types of photographers. One who collaborates and one who competes. Sometimes I prefer to work solo on a project that I come up with conceptually. In fact the fewer people I work with, the better. It allows the model to adapt faster to their surroundings without the struggle of becoming comfortable due to someone else’s presence. When I do work with another photographer, I make sure that the model is aware. I love conspiring with other local talents whether they are photographers, makeup artists, or models. It’s the best way to network and learn from each other!

[ZB]: Your subject matters vary in style and feel which is awesome. Do you have a favorite?
[KK]: I definitely have particular models in mind when I think of particular concepts. Sometimes I’ll even get inspired by the model’s natural look and I’ll think of a way to completely transform her and compliment her beauty even more. My favorite style would be the dark macabre feel with a little bit of sex appeal. The bloodier the better!

[ZB]: What steps do you take to produce that look and feel?
[KK]: I consider myself a creator of visual arts. Simply looking at a photo should narrate a story without words. First, a concept is thought up, which makes it easier to put the pieces together to tell that story. Then you need a model , a location , and a camera. What you use beyond that is purely from your imagination! Who knew zombies could be so sexy!?  REW_8335

[ZB]: *Note: I waved frantically at this point.
[KK]: I have to commend my models when it comes to creating some of my work. Sometimes a particular model would come to mind whether it’s because of how they look, how well they would adapt to a dangerous or disgusting location, or simply because they have to prep for 6 hours just to shoot for 30 minutes without complaining.  In the end, it’s always worth the sunburn and bug bites! Post-production takes a big part as well. Whether it’s lighting, contrast, or color adjustments, it’s always convenient when you can cover a blemish and remove a fire hydrant to complete a look.

[ZB]: Florida is a state of ten-minute weather changes. How do you overcome this?
[KK]: To be honest, it is very difficult. The weather is only a single factor out of a hundred that you must account for when planning a photo shoot. When it’s too hot, make up melts. When it rains, hair is ruined. When it’s too cold, everyone in Florida hates it… so good luck finding a model! It’s best to be understanding and open for rescheduling because you never know what can happen.

[ZB]: Any groups you belong to or models you would like to shout out? (Include websites if you like)
[KK]: There are too many to name! First of all, the local art community has SO much potential and I love every moment and opportunity working with all kinds of people. 

There is one person who really stands out, and so much of my work has been completed simply for the fact that this one person was involved. My left hand man would be my best Makeup Artist and such a great friend, Airen Sushereba of Airen’s Oddities. She is the epitome of true genius and talent. Costuming, makeup, hair, accessories, She’s the whole package! https://www.facebook.com/airens.oddities

[ZB]: Traditional film vs digital. Go!

As much respect and love I have for film, the present makes it difficult to survive. I salute anyone who has the time and patience for such a skill. Digital is much more modern and easy that a simple upload to facebook can go viral and you can only hope that someone famous might have seen it! I think conceptually, digital is a great way to portray my wild imagination. It’s just an edit away.

[ZB]: What aspirations do you have for the future?
[KK]: My goal is to never have to shoot weddings again! As much as I love celebrating happiness and love with strangers, I know I can do so much more. I never want to limit myself and hope that one day I can travel around the world with my Viking family and meet wonderful and interesting people. There is too much to see in this world. Not only do I want to see it for myself, but I would capture it for everyone else to see! DSC006922


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