Olly Lang, otherwise known as Oggsie, is a mobile photographer with a main focus on Instagram and social media. When he’s not taking his own photos, he’s leading mobile photography walks and workshops around London. He has been using Vrumi for 5 months.
Olly Lang teaching at the Tate taken by Tom Skipp
It all started back in 2008 on an iPhone 3GS, and Olly Lang hasn’t looked back (unless it’s through a lens). Not so much a passion but an obsession for photography, he is challenging the purpose of photography, particularly in a world where everyone has a camera in their pocket. Why mobile? Olly says “It’s the easiest camera to carry, and people prefer a mobile phone image now days. A mobile phone image is more relatable than that of an image from a high end camera. It’s simply more relevant.”
Over 170,000 Instagram followers can’t be wrong. Joining the app in 2010, Olly has been involved since the beginning by arranging tours and workshops for people that also want to improve their mobile photography. In return, Instagram added him to the elite ‘suggested users’ list, and the followers arrived from there. He says that it “is a very surreal experience to suddenly be connected to that sign up process to see hundreds and thousands and starting to interact through these devices.”
As for the future of Instagram? Having unveiled it’s latest venture, Instagram Stories, the Facebook owned app has received mixed reviews from critics, many stating that it has copied rival app, Snapchat.
“I think Snapchat's going to regret not selling but we'll see” Olly states. “My images were always very aesthetic and I tend to try and take an educational approach by talking to people about what images I've created or that they have shared. Where as I think Snapchat is more about entertainment. For now I aim to focus more on the non-entertainment side of it all. Just more good images, sharing with the community in an educational way, and exploring the growing importance of entertainment.”
The images Olly takes are a mixture of street, fashion and editorial. He uses Vrumi spaces to bring together creative teams. Describing the process as “a lot of failure with a couple of successes. As you develop creatively you become more aware of the importance of failing and how best to do that. Slight stretching, slight deviation from where you were before. The right space lets you put the right creative team together and allows you to kind of really produce a lot more, very different work instead of falling back on the same spaces, the same lighting, the same kind of concepts and that's what creativity is.”
His favourite shoot? “It's the next shoot that I'm gonna do. It's always the next shoot.” So, what’s next? “More shoots, more walks and more workshops!” And why Oggsie? “It's just a nickname my cousins gave me. I share my name with a DJ and a pro-paintballer so I got this mix of raver chicks and paintballers sending me friend requests so I decided to go for something a bit more memorable and unique. And it worked out quite well.”