If you choose a photographer (any photographer) and look at their portfolio in a chronological order, you can most literally see their growth and improvement with time. Bogdan Dreava, one of our top contributors, has come a long way. From early depictions of isolated objects and washed out colors, he’s transformed his portfolio into a splash of color and conceptual art.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your professional career.
My name is Bogdan Dreava and from Timisoara, Romania. I started taking pictures 8 years ago when I was in high school and after that, from 2010 to 2013, I studied photography at West University of Timisoara. It was only after college that I started to take photography more seriously and started focusing on one genre – still life photography.
How did get started in stock photography?
At the beginning I was looking in a way to improve my photography skills and earn some money with my work, so I found stock photography to be the best combination of both worlds. I’ve been shooting stock images for 4 years now and I must say It’s not an easy task. I think it forces you to create everyday and you must find ways to stand out in a huge crowd. What I like about stock is that I have control over my images, I choose what I want to shoot and decide about composition, colors and other small details.
What are some personal favourite themes to work with?
I don’t have any favourite theme to work with, but in the last couple of months I have been trying to integrate shapes like cubes, spheres and triangles in my images. I find geometry to be very interesting and eye catching so this is the direction in which I’m heading. It’s quite time consuming to put everything in perfect order.
Your recent works are very bold, how did you go about creating them?
During my first year in stock photography, everything I was doing was safe. Most of my works were objects on a white background and super simple composition. I knew that to stand out, I I needed to change, so I started to experiment with colors and other shapes. Right now I’m focusing more on preproduction where I choose my subject, decide on the compositions and what technique to use and I try to stick as much as I can at the initial plan. From time to time, I don’t make any sketches and just start shooting and experimenting right away.
I couldn’t help but notice the objects you’ve taken apart and how orderly many of your works are. What is your message with those images?
All my images are very straight forward. I would say there isn’t much space for mystery or at least that’s the way I see it. I like patterns, geometry and colors so I try to integrate this elements in every image of mine. Simple as that. 🙂
How would you describe your aesthetic?
Simple, colorful and direct.
What is your favourite photograph that you have taken and why?
An image from my series called “Bottles”. Some white bottles over a pink background, but I like the simple composition and subtlety of the light and shadows.
What are your thoughts on the future of stock photography?
Stock photography is evolving every year and the competition is stronger and stronger. I hope that in the near future, every stock agency will have some curated galleries where you can find good images and maybe those images would be a little more expensive. This will encourage photographers to focus on quality over quantity and customers will quickly find the images they need.
Do you pursue any other art forms?
Everything I do is around photography, but I started to experiment with 3D software and I’ve finished a small project called “Alphabet” where I illustrate a sphere that discover our alphabet. Silly, but a fun project 🙂
Your #1 tips or words of wisdom:
If you are a photographer and you are in a creative block or just want to try different things, still life photography is a fun way to illustrate an idea or a concept. I try to tell every photographer to experiment with this genre, even if it’s only for simple still like light tests or composition. The good part is that you don’t need expensive equipment to start, you just need a camera, a tripod and natural light. Just give it a try, you will not regret it.
If you’re feeling inspired by our interview with Bogdan Dreava, see if there are some ideas in our list of creative photography projects that you would like to try out to enrich your personal photography portfolio.
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