Every day we see stunning photos from our peers in the 500px community, but not often do we turn the lens back upon the photographer. The Portrait series focuses on remarkable 500px users who may have something to teach us about their field of photography. This week's feature is Caras Ionut, interviewed by Matt Knight.
What’s the best thing about being a photographer?
The best thing is that you can capture a unique moment, a special emotion and save it for life. Being a photographer is also a great hobby, you are more emotionally in touch with everything real on this earth, you became part of it and try to "save" it to share it later on.
Are there any parts, or things you would change?
First I would like to change my camera, to one like a D3s, I’d like some more lenses and more of a flash kit, like the SB900. But I hope also to have a studio where I can work more efficiently. Now, though, photography and design is the second priority in my life. If I could change anything, it would be the place where I live now!
What makes your work different to anyone else’s?
I believe my work is kind of unique. I see a lot of work that is very abstract, a combination of impossible things, however I like more realistic surrealism. I believe sometimes my work can be recognized without my name appearing beside it.
What makes a good photo?
A good photo is very hard to make, you should try over and over, return to the same place or similar, to see other opportunities, to try all settings and never stop wanting more. After 3 months if you still love the picture, then you can say that it is a good photo.
Do you plan projects? Or take photos with a particular shot in mind?
Sometimes I plan, sometimes I just create, sometimes I'm stuck! Depends from day to day.
I've heard that from a set of 100 photographs, a photographer may only be happy with 1 of them. How many shots do you take, and do you shoot for insurance?
I shoot like crazy. At least 2000 shots per piece of work, always different angles, positions, many shots on the same subject, I shoot with bracketing, different light settings etc. Insurance is the key as you never know what you will find. Sometimes I think I got a good photo but after I arrive home it was disappointing. So for me editing in Photoshop is important as it allows me to fix some errors until I can get back there and reshoot.
What’s better, photographing by yourself being able to do what you want? Or shooting with friends?
I don't like to work with friends, because there’s always a difference of opinion. I like to work in silence, to observe, to think clearly, to do what I love and trust my feelings.
Street/Landscape? People/Animals? DSLR/ SLR?
Any kind of photography. Since I make creative edits of my work, every shot can be vital for me. I prefer DSLR, but also a pocket camera is very useful. Some people run away if they see a big photo camera, so sometimes there is a big problem with a DSLR.
Which photographers, or artists, inspire you the most?
I have several lovely photographers/designers whose work I love. A few examples are Dmitry Ageev, Marei & Christoph Hessel, Andrew Lucas, Anka Zhuravleva, Dariusz Klimczak and Gorazd Golob.
How important is post-editing? To what extent do you use computer software to improve your photos?
Very important for me. Where I live it’s hard to make a great shot, if you don’t have the possibility to travel to some exotic place. This doesn’t mean I don’t have photographs in my computer, but they will not be more successful than my creative edits! So I take some shots, I add some other sky, some special effects... and create art.
How can new photographers improve their photography?
First, it’s very important to respect others’ work and to try to understand why it’s so popular. Also try to accept any criticism and to photograph over and over to see if there’s any improvement from the previous session.