There are a select few photographers that manage to capture the elegance and grace of their subjects in an artistic way. Konrad Bak’s specialty is translating the sensuality of the female form in an artistic and interpretive way. His portfolio consists of some beauty shots, but mostly it is the embodiment of powerful and elegant women.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your professional career.
My name is Konrad Bak, I live and work in Wroclaw, Poland. I’m a graduate of the University of Technology in Wroclaw. I’ve been taking photos for a good ten years. My specialities are beauty, fashion, and equine photography.
My professional career started with the new possibility to earn something, but very quickly I began to see stock photography in this new capacity. Above all, it’s a fantastic way to reach out to new customers, which under normal circumstances you wouldn’t find.
One of your works is a top selling image in our database. To what do you attribute the success of that photograph?
This photograph, in particular, is completely different than the typical stock image of a kissing couple taken on a white background. I work with models who can act like real actors, play intimate scenes instead of just posing. I think, it’s just the key to good photography.
Many of your photographs have a touch of surrealism. How would you describe your style in photography?
In my opinion, the camera lens should express feelings, tell stories. In my photographs, I try to capture the fleeting beauty, the mood of the moment. I’m fascinated by the sensuality of the female body, the uniqueness of the nuances of feminine beauty, facial features, fluctuations in moods, and the possibility of converting it all in a durable form.
What is your philosophy on commercial photography?
I try to “smuggle” artistic values into the commercial sphere. The best commercial ads you see on TV are affecting our emotional perception, and that’s why they are memorable. Of course, professional technical skills certainly help achieve this goal. Only a perfectly mastered tool will give you the right results.
How much of your work day do you devote to post production and how important is this stage for you as a photographer?
Post production is nowadays necessary to achieve success in the professional photography market. Everything that surrounds us becomes more and more perfect, sometimes it is really hard to keep up with it. On the other hand, there is also a very strong trend of “authentic photography”, without the help of Photoshop and the like tools. This especially applies to lifestyle, travel, and reportage photography. Some of my photos require a lot of post production (it depends on the project), some don’t need any final touches.
When it comes to producing images that sell, what are the most important aspects to pay attention to?
I always place emphasis on development. With microstocks, it is no exception. The fact that my work was appreciated by the month certainly influenced my motivation to continue. A very interesting experience is to look for ‘gaps’ in microstock market and try to fill them. My advice is to achieve a very ambitious demeanor, picking up a very high, artistic level in your photo shoots.
What is your favourite photograph that you have taken and why?
I can’t really tell but perhaps the one with young woman wearing a “rose dress”? I’m considering it as a tribute to the beauty of the female body presented in unique floral arrangement.
Do you think it’s better for photographers to find their niche or work in different genres to maximise sales?
It’s hard to tell. I’m trying to do both. When you find a niche, you have a real chance to be recognized and appreciated throughout the world. On the other side, trying to work in different genres will help you pick that particular genre in which you can achieve the most, and ultimately find your specialization. Every moment is a good one to start working with microstocks, and if you are putting yourself in everything you do – you’ll achieve success.
I couldn’t help but notice some of the empowering images you have of women. How would you say the perception of woman is changing in regards to stock photography?
I think over the years, I can observe the trend of authentic photography, without excessive retouching, or with no retouching at all. The most important thing in photography is to show everyday emotions – because it’s of most importance to all of us. As for my inspiration for the empowering images, it’s primarily femininity. It’s also sensuality and uniqueness of female bodies. I like to focus on subtle contrasts and build some interesting stories about them.
Your #1 tip or words of wisdom:
An amateur worries about the equipment, a professional worries about money, and a master worries about the light 😉