Q1. Good afternoon. Can I ask your name please?
A1. It's Verity Saunders.
Q2. Verity is your first name, right? That's quite a unique name, isn't it?
A2. Yeah. It means "truth" in French.
Q3. Where are you from, Verity?
A3. From England. London.
Q4. Did you grow up in London?
A4. Yeah. Just outside though. About half an hour outside.
Q5. What's your major in college?
A5. It's graphic design. I'm in my third year.
Q6. And why are you in Japan?
A6. To have a new cultural experience, for my work. And for me, as a person. And collect as much as I can.
Q7. Are you having fun in Japan?
A7. Yeah! Yeah, it's been really good. It's been very, very different. But it's been really good.
Q8. Why?
A8. Because I don't know. The way of life, everything, the language. It's not like going to America or whatever, you know. It's a completely different country from any other country I've ever been to. But yeah, it's been really good. It's been...frustrating at some times, but it's been really good.
Q9. What kind of things do you like to do, Verity?
A9. I like to go out. I like to read, play tennis. Not as much as I used to though. And...oh yeah, photography as well.
Q10. How long have you been interested in photography?
A10. Since, since I've ever been into art, really. Since I've been, about sixteen maybe. But got into it more.
Q11. Do you have your own camera?
A11. Yep. Yeah.
Q12. What kind of camera do you have?
A12. It's a Canon. Canon camera, but... And I want to collect as many lenses as I can get, but...money. Shortage of money, so...
Q13. Is photography expensive?
A13. Fairly expensive. But it's obviously, if you're a student, it's pretty cheap. The fact that you get all the equipment provided for you, et cetera. So I think that will be a real shock when I leave university, and I don't have all the photography paper and everything at my, that I can use for free any time and all that, you know.
Q14. How much film have you used this year?
A14. This year, oh my god. About...I don't know. About...30-40 films maybe.
Q15. Do you use mostly color prints, black-and-white or digital?
A15. Color and black-and-white, but I prefer black-and-white.
Q16. Why?
A16. Just aesthetically I really like the look of black-and-white.
Q17. What kind of pictures do you take?
A17. Varied. Like, this year, because I'm collecting as much as I can, many different things. Buildings, type, people... I don't know, it's different. It's different than it would be at home because everything is so different that you sort of take photos of lots and lots of different things, you know. Things that you would, at home maybe you wouldn't even think about taking photos of.
Q18. What do you use your photos for?
A18. For me personally, just to have them, you know. As normal, as normal, you know. And a photo album. And also, yeah for my work, just like reference.
Q19. Where have you taken pictures recently?
A19. Korea, I went to Korea in Golden Week. And...where else? Oh, the other day just around university. And uh...yeah.
Q20. How much luck is involved in getting a good picture? Or is it mostly skill?
A20. Both, I think. Yeah, I think both.
Q21. Do you know how to develop pictures?
A21. Uh-huh.
Q. Black-and-white?
A. Yeah, black-and-white. Not color, just black-and-white.
Q22. Would you like to be a professional photographer?
A22. Not, no not, I don't think so, no.
Q23. Why?
A23. Because I think it's very hard to be a really successful photographer. You have to be exceptional, I think. And there are so, I don't know. It's like anything else, there's so many out there, but still I think you have to be exceptional to really, really succeed. And also I think, I don't want to be, I just enjoy it as my past time.
Q24. Are there any Japanese photographers that you like?
A24. Yeah, there is actually. There's this woman called, I can't remember her name, Ariko Hou or something, but she takes absolutely stunning black-and-white.
Q25. Is she alive now?
A25. I think she is, yeah. I think she is.
Q26. Does Japanese photography have a particular style that makes it unique?
A26. I don't know. I haven't looked at enough, at Japanese photography to be able to tell that. But I mean, just this woman...is...I don't know, is not an actual Japanese, specific style or anything that makes... It's just, I mean, it's like any other... Henri Cartier Bresson or something. A French photographer. Similar to his photos, just really gorgeous, rich black-and-white. A lot of people shots.
Q27. What about cinematography? Have you shot any film?
A27. Yeah. Just a wee bit of a cine camera. So I did, a fair bit of filming in Thailand and Viet Nam.
Q28. Anything artistic that you would say?
A28. Just, I filmed a lot for my work next year. But general bits and pieces. And I don't know what, how it's going to turn out. But I mean, with cine camera it's...slightly more hit and miss than it is with a normal video camera. And it's quite a basic cine camera that I have.
Q29. You say that you're taking film to be used in your work.
A29. Yeah, yeah. Basically I just want to have as much work in many different kind of media. To be able to play around with or whatever for various projects next year.
Q30. Are there any famous films that you love especially from a visual perspective?
A30. God. I can't think now. I saw this French film, I can't remember what the name is, which is bad, but anyway. I saw this French film and it was totally done by black-and-white stills. And it was about the future, kind of like a holocausty-style storyline. It was brilliant, it was about three quarters of an hour long, and you never have thought that it could pulled off totally out of black and white stills. But that was really good.
Q31. This French film, what kind of shots did they have that were unique?
A31. Just...that there was...a narrator, a person who was speaking throughout the film. And it was subtitled, telling the story. And the whole storyline was a twist in it or whatever. But it was just shot so people's faces, expressions or situations.
Q32. What are some good photographs that you've taken recently? Can you describe maybe one or two or three that you thought were particularly good.
A32. In Vietnam, I think. I took some good ones, I was really pleased with them.
Q33. What were they shots of, do you remember?
A33. They were shots of people, and type, places... And one of them I really liked was of a person, and it was weird because I just took the, it was the last shot on the film and, I was just taking it to finish the film and it ended up being really good. I was pleased with it anyway.
Q34. Why was it good?
A34. Just...the color. It was a color film, but it was really, really muted color. Almost like a greeny-black-and-white-style photo. And, I don't know really, this guy was totally unaware that I took it, and it was in a doorway. It really captured the moment or whatever. I, I was really pleased with my Vietnam photos, 'cause it, for me it captured so much of what I remember it to be like, et cetera, et cetera, you know. I suppose everybody feels like that about their photos they take on holiday, but... I was really pleased. And also just really rich colors and everything.