I vår serie THE INTERVIEW, intervjuer vi bryllupsfotografer vi beundrer på ulike grunnlag. Dette for å få vite mer om merkevaren deres, hvem som er 'bak kamera', og hva de tenker om seg selv og sin profesjon. Vi håper at våre intervjuer er til inspirasjon, både for kommende bruder, og andre fotograf kolleger. For oss er det viktig at de har en tydelig merkevare, en unik kvalitet og ikke minst integritet. Som en ekstra bonus digger NWB fotografer med kul attitude, og som tydelig fremstår som ekte vare. Vi ønsker å inspirere også de utenfor fotografsfæren med personlige spørsmål, som kan gi oss et glimt av menneskene bak alt det vakre visuelle. Hvem er de som fanger de store øyeblikkene i livene våre på så sjelsettende vis. Hva liker de, hva drømmer de om, og hva driver de? Denne gangen er det dyktige ANETA MAK, som vi var så heldig å få stjele litt tid av rett før bryllupssesongen tar helt av. NWB falt 'head over heels', fra første stund vi så hennes vakre arbeid, og det traff rett i sjel og hjerte. Hun blander perfekt det sarte med det estetiske vakre, samtidig som det er tidløs eleganse. Vi blir alltid betatt av hennes bilder, og vi skulle gjerne tapetsert våre vegger med hennes kunstverk, så vi kunne omgitt oss med alt denne inspirasjonen, som gir næring til sjel og sinn. ANETA MAK gir oss visuelle drømmer fra virkeligheten, som berører, og får oss til å lengte etter mer.
In our series THE INTERVIEW, we interview wedding photographers we admire in different ways. We want to know about their brand, how they work, who's behind that lens, and what are they thoughts about their work and life. NWB hope that our interviews are an inspiration for brides to be, as well as fellow photographers in the industry. It is important for us that the selective photographers have recognizable brand, a unique quality, and integrity. We also like the extra flavor, such as a cool attitude, a backbone, and a funnybone. And by getting to know the people behind all that visual beauty, we also want to inspire everyone who is intrigued by getting to know people - life and love. Who are they? The ones that capture our lives important moments in such profound ways; what are their dreams, and what drives & thrives them? NWB try to give you the answers. This time it's the really talented ANETA MAK. We fell in love with her by the first glance at her work, and she captured our hearts, just longing for more. She mixes the sober elegance with such style and heart, that we want to wake up looking at her beautiful work of art. Her exquisite work, makes us believe that real life are even better than the wildest dream. It's just timeless, effortless and understated sophistication from real life and real moments, made into art to last a lifetime and beyond.
1. When and how did you 'fall into' the photography business?
I have always done art, but hand-drawn - BW portraits mostly using pencils or pastels - until a photographer friend inspired me to use a camera. That all happened in 2006, and in 2008 my photography business was born.
2. Photographing is a very personal matter, and are often unique because of the photographer, and how he or she sees it - what do you believe wedding photography should be about?
Totally - every person, photographer or not, sees the world in their own way. We have all lived different lives, had different experiences, we all like different art - things that inspire me, may not inspire others, and vice versa - that's why finding a photographer that shares your vision is so important. Wedding photography is so many things - it's telling the story of the couple as it unfolds but it's also putting your own take on the event too, it's seeing things with a trained pair of eyes that notices things that non-photographers most likely to miss, it's seeing the beauty in small things that most people ignore - it's the art of seeing the unseen and the art of creating in pressured situations.
3. How would you describe your style in five words?
Elegant, timeless, understated, happy, beautiful.
4. When did you decide to do weddings - and was there ever a question not to shoot weddings?
I've always been drawn to human faces - even when drawing by hand. I love the way people look - the lines, the personality, the eyes! Of all races and ages - everyone has a story to tell. It is so interesting to be able to catch that in an image. Weddings just seemed right - so many emotions, so many people - and shooting all this under pressure too. I generally prefer working in pressured situations - so weddings were perfect. The adrenaline rush of turning up at a venue to start the day is so exciting - it feels amazing - all you want to do is create! I often forget to eat and drink - its usually my assistant that forces me to refuel at around the 10 hour mark.
5. Which moment do you think is the most important to capture during a wedding day?
There isn't one single moment as such - it's all important - each section of the day leads into the other - they are all parts of the same story. Plus, it's not down to me to place importance on one part over another - it's someone else's day, it's my job and duty to make sure I record that day as best as possible.
6. Have the process of creating your own unique style, been a lot of compromise, or have you always held on to your beliefs in your art?
Not really a compromise - I definitely have my own preferences of what i like to shoot and don't, but I'm also a service provider - there are some things i prefer over others but that doesn't mean I won't photograph them - it just means I won't photograph them as much. For example, I don't have kids yet - so photographing toddlers is a real challenge, so I stay away from that until I feel I am ready - be it emotionally, mentally or technically, or all of the above. It's a great challenge to do something that you may not be good at or may not like as much - it pushes you to venture out of your own bubble and see the world with fresh eyes.
7. What is your favorite moment during a wedding?
Ceremony - every time. The vows especially - I often cry! The first dance too - they always look so happy and relaxed! And once the party music starts, I like to secretly shake my stuff as I photograph the guests - tiny hip shaking to the beat.... it's always at that point i always feel sad that I will be leaving them soon.
8. What do you love about weddings?
I love how open people are - the emotions are so raw and on display. It's the one day we want the world to know exactly how we feel - it's so rare, and that's why it's so special. And of course, who doesn't love a pretty wedding? I am a total sucker for a pretty dress and a bespoke stationery suite!
9. Do you ever get emotional shooting a wedding?
Oh yes, all the time - if i didn't, i dont think i could do my job well. It's an emotional day - you can't approach it as a robot - it's all about empathy. I love to cry at weddings - i want to feel what they feel. I honestly think it makes me better at seeing.
10. What is your strength being you - the way you see it?
Friendly i think. I've been told by brides that I make them feel at ease - thats a really nice thing to hear. I want my couples to relax and enjoy being photographed - the way we make our subjects feel is key to how they will look in their images.
11. What makes your heart skip a beat - both professionally and private?
Professionally - seeing a photograph that makes me feel 10 again - the adrenaline rush - why, how, when, who - all these questions come rushing in - I need to know more! Away from photography - is it cheesy to say "my husband"? (NO! We love that!)
12. What is your ambition and your goals?
I'm sure every creative says this and I'm definitely no different - to always improve and to shoot more personal work. I have never tried large format photography, maybe one day. Or having my own darkroom.
13. Will you ever host a workshop?
Maybe - but only if i have something to say thats of genuine value to someone. So far, I'm still learning. I've done a bit of public speaking a few times on different subjects in my previous career - some I bombed - some I did ok - overall, ummm, it's actually quite scary!
14. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
On a beach in Bahamas, in a bikini, with a pina colada, recuperating from shooting a wedding.... is that too specific? Kidding. 5 years is a long time - I honestly have no idea. Plus, I'd rather not plan that far - makes it a bit dull when you finally get there.
15. In Scandinavia many envy the natural light and nature, from warmer and exotic sides of the world during weddings. What do you as international photographer see as beauty and 'frameworthy' in Norway, and Scandinavia, shooting weddings here?
I have never been there, but I would love to visit. It makes me think of untamed rawness, wild romance and mood, excitement. Plus I love the Scandi design style, which I'd love to see in a wedding.
16. If you could choose a fantasy celebrity wedding - who would it be?
Scarlett Johansson marrying Jake Gyllenhaal - would make for the sexist couple portraits, don't you think? (We sure do!)
17. Who or what makes you laugh really hard?
My husband - his sense of humour is so similar to mine - we are like 5 year old kids sometimes. I love the british sense of humour - it's so unique and witty - i also love the fact it confuses the hell out of non-Brits.
18. What do you take away from the weddings you shoot?How beautifully fragile people are - we are just a bundle of conflicting emotions and we are all just trying to have someone love us.
19. Who is your inspiration in life - professionally and private?
This is totally cheesy but my mum - she is the most diplomatic, kind, generous, insightful person I know.
20. The website and the design tell a lot about the photographer we think. Your website and design are very simple and elegant, why is that important to you, if so?
I love simple, understated things that are made well, from the finest materials possible - be it for clothes, furniture or food - it's all about quality, not quantity. I am a total girl so I love pretty things too, so pale shades, gold tones, and i also love what i would call more masculine design - simple shapes and lines that are bold and defining. I tried to combine all of that in my branding - although its always a work in progress, ha!
21. How important is marketing in photography?
As important as it is to any other business. We have a product to sell and we want the world to know. Marketing comes in so many different guises - it doesn't have to be a dirty word anymore. You can do it in so many different ways.
22. If you were to give the scandinavian brides one piece of advise - what would it be?
Fall in love with your photographer - and they will love you back tenfold and give you the most amazing piece of themselves and their art. Be brave with your wedding - be selfish even - do what's right for you, not what tradition asks. Everyone always says "have fun", but actually it's the ultimate truth, have fun!
23. Coffee or Tea - Beer or Wine?
Oh god, tea all the way. I drink up to 12 cups a day during winter. Im sure its just pure caffeine in my veins by now.
24. What motivates you in your work?
The unknown - every job and commission has something new to learn and experience.
25. What do you want your couples to take away from their wedding photos and the experience - and how to you get them at ease?
An enjoyable, relaxed, highly professional, seamless and luxury experience - that they are being looked after by the best and that nothing is impossible. I want them to feel excited and proud of their photographs.
26. Who is your typical client?
Someone who is confident in their vision for their big day and isnt scared to break the rules to achieve what they want. Life is too short to be living by other people's rules - especially on your wedding day!
27. What is the most beautiful destination you've shot a wedding?
Provence - that light!
28. When did you decide to do your kind of weddings, or were there ever a question not, to shoot your distinctive style?
The more I shot the more I realised what I like and what I don't. I loved seeing film images so I made the decision to switch to film.
29. Do you see the world as your marked, or are you focusing on specific parts of the world?
I love Europe but equally i love Asian landscape. I'd love to shoot in Bali one day. I have never been to the Caribean so maybe that could be on the wishlist too.
30. Who is your style icon of all time - in photography and life?
Err... no single person sadly... that would be too dull i think... so many people have so many interesting things about them, I'd feel rude to just focus on one!
31. What do you love about life?
Food, laughter, friendships, truth, tea, pancakes, holidays, sunshine, flipflops... and more...
32. What makes you cry?
For happy things, reunions. For sad things, animals in pain.
33. Do you ever feel like following the 'crowd' - or trends in the industry?
Ha, yeah, sometimes - who doesn't? I'd be lying if I said i didn't - we all get influenced by others. It's what you do with it that counts - if it's a blatant copy, thats really not cool at all. If it encourages you to think out of your box and create something new, then thats progress. I would hate copying someone's work - what's the point? That won't buy me any kudos points with clients or my industry peers - you simply become "just like everybody else", and in a competitive industry such as ours its important to stand out, and that only comes with a unique look and a unique product offering. I don't get people who only want to recreate someone else's hard work - it's lazy and it makes for dull art.
34. Would you or/and have you ever said no to a wedding that you didn't feel was a match for your photography style?
Not often, but yes. In a creative industry, we do things that we truly believe in. I put my life and soul into my work and I always try to over-deliver. Therefore, it's important to connect with your clients - if the connection is not there, or they require something I cant produce, then I step away. In the long run it's better for them and it's better for me - everyone wins. Its not always easy to say no - but it's something im trying to get used to with time.
35. Any tip on how to attract the dream clients?
Be yourself and you will attract those like you i guess. No point in being fake.
36. Who or what gives you goosebumps?
People who are burning with passion about something. So so powerful to watch.
37. If you were to style your dream wedding shoot, how would it look?
A really boho take on a luxe wedding with a twist of surreal .... Long hair on both the bride and the groom, a forest wedding setting, all the guests including the bride in outlandish haute couture dresses, a groom with a beard in a sharp suit, lots of cutely dressed kids and pets everywhere, champagne and caviar on tap, dita von teese and cirque du soleil type of entertainment... basically my ideal wedding would be one styled by the incredible Fiona Leahy of Fiona Leahy Design - it would be incredible to shoot one of her masterpieces.
38. Do you get inspired by other wedding photographers?
Yes, most definitely - there are amazing artists within the wedding world. Jose Villa, Elizabeth Messina, Leo Patrone (he shot our wedding and I absolutely love our images!), Aaron Delesie, KT Merry, Lisa Lefkowitz.
39. Describe your style in 3 words?
Timeless, elegant, understated.
40. Winter or Summer - Spring or fall?
Summer. I love being in a bikini, or a summer dress and sandals. It all feels so carefree. Spring - new beginnings and so much colour everywhere! Oh and baby animals - is there anything cuter than a lamb?!
41. Why did you choose film over digital photography, and when did that change happen, if there was a change?
Back in 2009. I saw Jose, Messina and Canlas' work, and there was never ever going to be going back to digital. I spent a few days training with Jose at his private 1-1 workshop back in 2010 and that experience has led me to fully embrace film - it was an incredible experience and I really can't thank Jose enough for making me "see the light" - literally. He is an amazing teacher and I owe so much to him.
42. What do you love about film?
It has an unquantifiable nature. I love that you can tell that a film image is different, but most people dont know why. I guess what im trying to say is that it feels mysterious.
43. If you you weren't a photographer - what would you do for a living?
Maybe in another lifetime, I would like to be a vet.
44. If you could choose any wedding photographer first hand, to have in front of your camera, who would you do a portrait session of?
Can i pick 2? Girl; Elizabeth Messina - she oozes understated sexy to me thats so quietly confident, it's really enticing. Boy; Aaaron Delesie - I know so little about him and id love to find out more, he has a cheeky look in his profile, and he seems really playful and I'd love to capture that.
45. Your favorite quote.
"If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need." (i think its by Cicero?) - This is a recent addition to my favourite quotes list if there is such a thing - but I love it - it makes me think of quiet moments of contemplation - something i hardly get these days, so maybe thats why its striking a chord right now. It's my husband's favourite quote too - he is a garden designer, so for him it has a whole different extra layer of meaning.
46. What is your definition of Love?
Looking at someone and wanting to know more about them - no matter how long you have known them. I want that feeling to be there at 40, 60, 80, 100 even!
For real life wedding by ANETA MAK PHOTOGRAPHY, click HERE.
PLEASE SHOW HER SOME LOVE, AND FOLLOW HER ON FACEBOOK - INSTAGRAM - TWITTER AND PINTEREST. VISIT HER BLOG FOR EVEN MORE INSPIRATION.
TUSEN TAKK - THANK YOU SO MUCH ANETA MAK!