If the originality of your Instagram feed is bothering you, then it’s time to accept that classic challenge; how can you take something that you use every day – your Instagram feed – and make it better? To show you just how easy it is, we’re continuing our ‘Who We’re Following’ series with an interview with one of our favourite contemporary photographers Natalie Christensen -  aka @Natalie_Santafe.

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Name:

Natalie Christensen

Location:

Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA.

Full-Time Job:

Retired psychotherapist and now full-time consultant.

What Are Your Earliest Memories Of Photography?

I grew up in the 1970’s and 80’s….I remember my first Polaroid Instamatic so vividly. I took a lot of bad photos on that camera. I always loved looking at family snapshots and still do.

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What Was The Image/Location That Made You Fall In Love With Photography?

I didn’t start exploring photography as a creative outlet until I moved to Santa Fe a few years ago. I found my muse in Ricardo Legorreta’s architecture and that was all it took. My subject matter has evolved but I still love a beautiful abstracted architecture shot.

Who Were Your Early Influences?

My mother was a painter and designer of interiors. She was always playing with colour and taught me about placement of objects in space. We were always rearranging something in the house. I was introduced to Mark Rothko’s work in the 1980’s and fell in love with his approach to conveying deep meaning through colour fields. Once I started making images, I found so much inspiration on Instagram and I still do. There are so many fantastic artists sharing their heart and soul through the images they make. I am lucky that they share it with me.

What Is Your Favourite Photograph On Your Instagram Page & Why?

An image titled “Are these chairs taken?” I am very drawn to swimming pools for their psychological symbolism and this one has a feeling of being a familiar scene but is very open to projection by the viewer. What just happened here? What is about to happen?

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What Are Five Simple Steps To Taking The Perfect Picture?

I have no idea…I don’t think I have taken one! I always start with strong light, a subject that has a psychological element, and a formal composition.

The Last Photograph That Took My Breath Away Was…

“Abby sees Hugh in the Front Hall” by Jessica Todd Harper.

I Don’t Think Photography Should Be…

Devalued. It is still in its infancy as an art form and has a long way to go.

Three Of My Favourite Instagram Accounts Are…

@llssfoto for her poignant exploration of American suburbia, @jimeyrejimeyrejimeyre for his emotive minimalism of London street elements, and @jokalinowski_ for her portraiture of the elderly and exploration of what objects are most important to us at the end of life.

Follow Natalie Christensen on Instagram, @Natalie_Santafe and check out more of her work on her website

Want to see more in the series? Check out our exclusive interview with independent photographer and architect, @Irini_Ioto.