Interview with photographer #27: Diana Samson (Romania, Portrait, Architecture and Nature Photography)84LENS
Name: Diana Samson
Location: Romania, Iasi
Gear: Nikon D3400 + 18-55mm, 70-300mm
Experience: I just rediscovered this hobby and started taking photos constantly in feb 2018, when I also bought my first camera. But my first contact with photography was in the first years of highschool.
When did you start shooting and how did this love for photography happen? What is your view about photography?
This started way back when I was in highschool. Then I started experimenting all kinds of arts. I was showing some interest in traditional arts (especially painting) and photography got a special place in my heart. I think everything started because of curiosity and a wish to immortalize certain moments. I always seek beauty where I would usually say it’s nothing there.
Great inspiration and “partner in crime” is my sister. All the time when I have an idea for a shooting, she’s there for me helping with posing and lights and even more ideas. I think photography, along with other arts, it is a good relaxation way, and also a way of learning more about the world around you and discovering yourself.
Apart from photography, tell me about your hobbies and interests?
As mentioned before, and as you will see in some if my photos, I enjoy painting, doodling and sketching. Newest occupation in my free time is digital drawing. I’m learning a lot, most of my sketches look pretty weird and stupid, but the most important thing is that i feel relaxed while doing it and looking at the end at the result, I feel proud because I’m constantly learning new stuff.
Which genre of photography do you like/practice and why?
Nature: I love taking pictures of nature. every piece of it is perfect. I find nature patterns fascinating. I wish I could take perfect photos of ferns 🙁
I love foggy stuff (mountains, skyscrapers, hills, streets, everything is better if it’s foggy).
Urban: usually i’m hypnotized by building facades and architectural details, city lights, busy peoaple, and all this sort of things.
Photos of art: because I started to get in touch also with this part of me lately, and I also want to share it ( I created some collections on pexels where I add them)
Animal: I am a huge animal lover, and actually have a cat. How can you have a cat and see her daily and do not take thousands of pictures of her? ? Animals are so expresive and natural, we could learn a lot if we just stop and appreciate them.
Almost 90% of photographers find it hard to earn money out of photography. Any tips that might help photographers to earn money?
Uhm, i actually don’t make money out of photography. I think I need to study a little more to start earning and begin doing it more seriously.
Yes it’s hard but i think if you promote yourself properly, you can manage. i tried a couple of times, but you need a lot of commitment to share it on all channels and find your target public. I don’t know why but i dont feel confortable doing this. I don’t think I’m at that level yet. I still need to work a lot on my technique.
Another tip would be, if you want to sell, you need to choose one specific topic and work on it.
What mistakes did you make when you started taking pictures?
Maybe not doing it often enough and fearing that if I do it differently, then “what would people think?”. This is such an unhealthy way of thinking, not only in photography, but in life in general. fear is the biggest enemy if you wish to accomplish something, and i’m teaching myself now not to fear and let my imagination go wild.
Which photo are you currently most proud of? Tell us a story about this photo please.
I particularly love this one. And I’m super proud of it, because this cat never stays in one place. I made a little lightning setup to shoot completely other things, and he just came in front of the camera and started to pose. Out of some dozens of failed photos, there’s this beauty. I love the way he’s looking over his shoulder, he’s really handsome.
And i think the composition of the photo is just good, and clean.
What do you do to keep motivated, and not lose your passion for photography?
At the moment, feedback received from the pexels community is a huge motivation. people reach me and they thank me for my photos, they create wonderful stuff with my shared pieces and this is really something.
I love it when my friends also start taking pictures and come show me their nice shots and ask for advice.
I love it when really manage to capture something and it ends up looking as I imagined it already, or even better.
Why are you giving away your photos on Pexels/Unsplash?
Funny story is, initially I was using pexels as storage for wordpress. then the first featured photo came and then the numbers. it felt like winning the lottery. photography is an important hobby to me. but i don’t sell the photos, and i don’t use them in any other way. I thought it would be such a pity not to share it somehow. I wanted first to make a photoblog, but solution from pexels allows other users to use it at a better quality, so here I am.
Light, decisive moment, content, ambiance, a good gear, according to you which is the most essential element in photography?
Gear is necessary of course, but the composition the most important. and composition will include all the others you mentioned.
For me is really important to have the proper light. This is my line before pressing the button “oh, look at this pretty light”. I especially love golden hours, because they bring the softest, warmest lights. golden hours make everything better!
Postprocessing part is also important especially on the way of discovering your style (what I’ve been doing all this time ☺️). But you van get really great pictures without editing them after as well.
How fo you promote yourself as photographer?
I’m bad with promoting, pexels does it for me (thanks a lot pexels ❤️) I share sometimes some of my favorite nature captures on instagram, but all the caption stuff and finding the proper hashtags kills me. so my account is there (link up) stop by and say hello if you read this and forgive me for not being that loyal with the constant posting. I also don’t want to spam my followers.
Truth is, time also might be a problem, because I’m involved in other activities.
Share your goal in photography?
I want to get to the point where I am mesmerized by most of my photos, and who knows in the future maybe earning money out of photography. (like, doing it good enough that people will trust me with their money for a photo session ?)
Is there a photo you dream of taking?
Long exposure night landscape (I am still searching for the perfect place to do it)
Do you know where your next mission or project will be?
I want to extend the photo range i’m offering on pexels (and also to try new stuff) so most certainly will be something new to get me out of my comfort zone. I’m thinking maybe of sports activities or specific holidays (with Romanian specific celebrations). The idea is still contouring, but this is what I wish overall.
Kindly share top five Instagram account everybody should follow?
https://www.instagram.com/eberhard_grossgasteiger/ (interview for 84LENS is here)
(ISS, ESA and other space related accounts, they all should be in your follow list <3)
Final words of wisdom you would like to share?
Never stop exploring.
Thanks a lot Diana! I wish you the most juicy shots!