When Vic Lentaigne first tried out photography, she was instantly hooked. “I loved it,” she tells It’s Nice That. It was at the age of 14 during school that she was “lucky enough” to gain regular access to a darkroom, which meant she was freely able to work, develop and test out her process; she would enter into her “own world”, as she puts it, with her headphones in, spending hours in the dark “creating and experimenting when other people were doing maths lessons!”.
What’s more, photography served as her own remedial form of therapy; Vic has ADHD, so photography and her stints spent in the darkroom were her own creative outlet and means of letting go, not adhering to any strict tools or sitting at a desk, which was “so rewarding”.
Now, the London-based photographer spends her time taking intimate portraits of the queer community, which includes a recent shoot where she documented the love of lesbian couples in the City over the course of Pride Month, plus various other evocative shots of intriguing subjects and people from the music industry. Her client list is just as impressive as her personal endeavours, including brands such as Louis Vuitton, Nike, Pat McGrath Labs, British Fashion Council, Business of Fashion, Art School London, Wonderland magazine, Hunger, Clash and Notion.
“There is something so powerful about a strong or striking image that provokes a reaction from the audience,” she says. “Photography is a medium that is a balance of capturing and freezing a moment, but also capturing emotion.” With this ethos in mind, you’ll rarely see Vic taking a picture of a still life; instead she devotes her practice to portraiture for the way that it enables her to tell “delicate moments of humanity”, and how it “exposes a person’s identity, character and often their feelings”. She’s drawn towards the rawness and energy that her discipline provides, especially that which is achieved through the “realness” of a photographic portrait.
GalleryVic Lentaigne: Jadah and Reva for Pride Month
As a result, Vic’s photography tends to gravitate towards themes of gender fluidity, queerness, identity and self-expression, all with a dose of “quiet emotion and compassion” that she feels towards her subjects. When she’s sourcing her inspiration, not only does she feel driven by those who she meets (and therefore photographs), but also by the individuals who are “working tirelessly” to change society for the better. This includes activists such as Munroe Bergdorf, who Vic describes as a great influence on her work, especially as they have shown how, even as a single individual, you can make a huge difference by standing up to corporations and actively seeking change.
Much of Vic’s portfolio is immensely personal. Each of her subjects is placed in an intimate and normal setting – be it a bedroom or outside with their dogs (or hairless cat, in one case). You can instantly tell that she brings out ease and comfort, useful for achieving such candid and honest shots. Besides this familiar sense of love and intimacy, Vic hopes that the work will resonate on a personal and impactful level, and soon she will begin experimenting with some ideas for moving-image projects – of late, she’s started to test out her directing skills and the prospect of working with video very much excites her. “I would ideally hope that people see my work and that it makes them feel something in a positive way,” she says. “Perhaps they resonate with the subject in the image, or perhaps they will learn something from it.”
About the Author
Ayla was an editorial assistant back in June 2017 and has continued to work with us on a freelance basis. She has spent nearly a decade as a journalist, and covers a range of topics including photography, art and graphic design. Feel free to contact Ayla with any stories or new creative projects.