Charlotte Bergan

I had a childhood filled with many crafts and art, but after graduating high school I focused most of my time on school and my career. 

After 10 years, a creative gap had to be filled. I purchased a camera and moved to Paris, which made me re-interested, re-motivated and “creative” again.

I am inspired by so many various painters, photographers and designers and, as a result, the journey of discovering who I am as an artist has been very frustrating.

I love minimalism AND maximalism. I enjoy the richness of color AND the simplicity of black and white. With the huge amount of photographic consumption available via social media and mood-board websites, I have struggled with defining my own style and identity. 

My earlier work usually incorporated a lot of colors, accessories, and outdoor locations. I enjoyed those shoots, but have found myself slowing down my process as a whole. This is partially due to a move towards medium and large format photography, and to the need for more calmness in general.

In this regard, using more film represents a literal and philosophical slowing down and simplification in both life and art.

I still shoot digital for many projects, but film has been increasingly my first choice in shoots.

Spending time in the darkroom developing and printing is meditative, and I hope to share more of this work in the near future. 

So here’s what I use for my artistic and travel work:

Cameras:

Canon R – I recently switched from a Canon 5D. Making the move to mirrorless was challenging but I love this camera. 

Hasselblad 500c/m – My medium format baby. No commentary needed as the name precedes it. 

Voigtlander Bessa R3A – In my purse/bag whenever I’m just wandering. This is an incredible range finder with 1:1 viewfinder so you can shoot with both eyes open at the same time. 

Lenses:

Canon RF 24-105mm f/4 – The kit lens is super practical. I plan to upgrade to the 28-70mm soon, however.

KIPON Elegant 90mm f/2.4 lens for Canon RF – I got this manual-focus portrait lens on a whim to test out an off-market Canon R brand and it’s excellent. Extremely sharp and substantial feeling.

Zeiss Distagon 50mm f/4 – A great and practical multi-use lens for the Hasselblad. 

Leica 40mm – I salvaged this lens from an old Leica point-and-shoot purchased by my dad in the early ’90s. My camera shop placed the glass in a lens body so I could use it with my Bessa. 

Other:

Kiwi Jus – Kiwi Camera in Orlando is the best camera shop. My lens cleaner is a must. 

Sekonic Light Meter – If I don’t have this I use a Lightmeter app on my phone, but using this allows for more precise readings.

HP5 and Portra 400 are my go to films for both 35mm and medium format. 

www.charlottemargot.com | @charlottebergan

Inside Charlotte’s camera bag:

Canon EOS R

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

Canon RF 24-105mm f/4

KIPON Elegant 90mm f/2.4

Zeiss Distagon 35MM f/1.4

Sekonic Light Meter

Ilford HP5

Kodak Portra 400

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