To discover more about the living life behind a lens we started portrait interview series featuring 500px photographers. Today we’d like to introduce you to Gabriele Liaudanskaite, a 17 year old food photographer from Lithuania. Photography is her hobby and here’s the story of how it started.
Hello Gabriele, could you tell us about your photographic journey?
My first attempt to make a food photograph was someday back in 2010 or early 2011, if I remember correctly. I just wanted to capture the moment. The result was a simple, amateur photo of a very tasty cake from a very bad angle :) After that time, somehow I realized how beautiful food is (even though my first camera didn't). So many patterns, so many colours and finally — so many tastes!
What I love most about food photography is the moments. They never repeat again.
Do you cook yourself for the photos? Or is there a family member or friend who helps out?
No way, I don’t like cooking myself. My photos would be nothing without the help of my mum. She is the one who deserves a medal.
The colours in your photos are very crisp and the light is natural. Do you do any post-processing adjustments to achieve this effect or is this just intuitive decision when taking a photograph?
I shoot photos in natural light, usually on the kitchen table near the window. Also, I use Photoshop to adjust the photos a bit but I try to never over-use it. People who see Photoshop as a witch from the medieval times that must be burned down should take it easy.
What camera settings do you usually shoot with?
When I shoot something important, I use automatic settings, and when I want to ‘play pretend as a photographer’, I switch to Av mode. Oh, and I like manual focus! Sadly, my shaking hands don’t.
What is your camera and preferred lens that you like to shoot with?
My beloved Canon EOS 1100D has only one lens to be friends with. It’s EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II. (I said I am an amateur!)
You have mentioned that you are an amateur photographer. Is it safe to assume that photography is your hobby only?
I made an agreement with myself — when I start earning money from what I do with my camera (commercial photo sessions or something like that; selling photos on 500px doesn’t count), it will no longer be my hobby, it will be my job.
Have you tried or are you considering to turn this passion into a profession?
There were many times when I thought about that but I believe it is a must to ‘make a name’ first.
Could you share with us any favourite childhood memories tied to food or cooking?
When I was 4 or 5, I had a wonderful dish set made of colourful plastics. Once I decided to ‘make a soup’: I took some fresh peas, a leaf of a cabbage, a raw potato and poured some milk. It was awful.
What’s your favourite food dish?
Sushi. Definitely. (All the Japanese readers out there — arigato
for such eatable masterpiece!)
Besides the beautiful and cheerful food photos your portfolio is filled with quaint indoor details, romantic photos of the outdoors and close-ups of life. Do you think there’s a reason why you gravitate towards such subject matter?
I am still learning how to see objects, how to capture them and how to express the moment that I saw. Many of those ‘other‘ photos deserve a ‘Delete‘ button but somehow they are still there.
I know you have won a few 500px Monday contests and got featured on 500px Editors’ Choice. How did it make you feel or what are your thoughts? Did you participate in other photo contests outside of 500px?
Winning a Monday contest together with other 11 people usually makes my day. And when talking about Editors’ Choice… Shall I mention tears or not? :)
I have participated in many different, usually internet-based photo contests and I’ve won in several of them. Nevertheless, my biggest luck was to be among few other laureates of Lithuanian schoolchildren‘s photography contest. It was a blast, really.
Do you feel more encouraged now to promote your work or more confident to enter contests?
No, every time I achieve something, my holy bar of requirements for myself rises.
Who are you favourite food photographers or chefs?
My biggest muses are Katie Quinn Davies
, Linda Lomelino
and famous 500px‘ists (is it even a word? :D):
Could you share advice that you’d give to any beginner photographer. Be it advice in food photography or just advice on how to get started?
One should not be afraid to begin with ordinary pictures: blooming tulips in grandma’s yard, oh-my-god-how-awesome clouds at sunset, touristic pictures of famous landmarks from a very boring angle, close-ups of friend’s new puppy or kitty or whatever. Only after taking such photos one will start to feel the need to become different.
Thanks Gabriele for the interview and thank you for reading! Feel free to leave a comment or question to the photographer below, we love your feedback.
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