My name is Kataonga Finau and Im 22 years old. I was born and raised in Auckland New Zealand. I attended AUT University and studied a Bachelor of Graphic Design for three years. I became more involved with photography in my last year of study when I was 21. After I graduated I wanted to continue with photography so I applied for an art school - Elam School of Fine Arts to complete my Masters degree. I soon realised art school was not for me. I left and transferred back to AUT and I am now currently completing my Honours degree in Photography.
After being influenced by analogue photography and by the work of artists like Paolo Roversi and Sally Mann I decided to shoot on a Polaroid SX70. I love the qualities of instant film, especially its soft focus and the nostalgia it provides. I would consider my work to be phenomenological. The work is about experiences and feelings of certain relationships Ive had with people and feelings Ive experienced that no one is a witness to. They are made according to my lifestyle and some of the pictures represent a sense of myself and a sense of the person in the portrait. My subjects are usually men, Ive shot women but prefer men which is due to many reasons, one of which majority of my friends are male. I like to take beautiful pictures that tell stories and are constructed in a way that suggests a candid moment. My pictures are also influenced by minimalism. Being taught minimalist graphic design has taught me to design photos in a similar way.
It is satisfying to take photos, it teaches you a lot about yourself. In a way your almost counseling yourself and constantly discovering who you are.
I love taking photos and making picture books. I would like to start a collection of coffee table books based on my own photographs, that also serve as a form of documentation.
Images courtesy of Katoanga Finau
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