Interview with Attila Kapodarca, photographer
You know already that here in Vibes we are all crazy about photography. This month we feel very lucky as we could catch for an exclusive interview an amazingly talented young photographer: Attila Kapodarca.
VIBES: Tell us a few things about yourself. When and how did you become a professional photographer?
ATTILA: Becoming a professional in anything is a process and I actually cannot pinpoint an exact moment; I’m still on my way and I keep working on it because I’m a perfectionist, and even if perfection doesn’t exist I always keep trying to reach it.
Before I became a photographer I was an engineer and entrepreneur but about two years ago I became aware that something was missing in my life, I needed something that would make me feel creative and give me an opportunity to express myself; that’s why I turned to photography and videos. I simply cannot imagine my life without creation.
VIBES: Did you have a mentor?
ATTILA: It may sound strange, but I didn’t. Actually that is something good and I would like to share it with people who have a passion for something. Passion moves everything and if you are passionate you have no limits, you can reach whatever you want. You need to study and practice a lot, more than a lot; but you don’t necessarily need to attend courses.
I like many photographers from all over the world, I follow their websites and try to study their technics. They give me inspiration which is a sensation I get from talented people in general.
Anyway, I like to work together with other photographers, I’m not envious and I don’t feel the competitive spirit that most of the others usually do. I think each photographer can learn something useful from another and joint projects could be a good way to find a mentor in each other, and perhaps they could lead to starting some interesting projects together.
VIBES: Can you describe your photographic style? How did you develop it?
ATTILA: That’s a good question. Probably other people can describe my style better than me watching my photos. In many photos of mine you will see people in the city; I love urban landscapes, especially if the city is old. I’m attracted to beautiful architecture and history. Other people have been creative when they built old buildings and if I am good enough to match their creativity with my own, we may get a picture that is unique and can transmit similarly unique emotions. Good landscapes create a beautiful base, and people in the photo bring it to life while good lights provide the final touch. So that’s how it happens: the end result is a picture where everything is in harmony.
VIBES: How much time do you spend taking photos vs retouching them?
ATTILA: It really depends on many things but I can say the editing part is way much longer than the photoshoot in itself.
You know, the way people approach photography really changed a lot over time and it still keeps changing. If you just look at the photos of your grandfathers you can’t help noticing that they never smiled. They were not boring people and probably in their lifetime they smiled more than us. But nobody wanted to be remembered with a silly face, so the smile was something negative when you met a photographer. Later on we decided that photography should not only catch a moment of life, but it should also catch feelings and radiate emotions; that’s why we smile now, that’s why photographers look for good lights, that’s why we want to be creative.
The camera is a device that humans created, and unfortunately even the best device on this planet is still not good enough to catch feelings. The camera does its job pretty well, it captures a moment for eternity, but that moment is frozen in time; our cameras are not (yet) able to capture and freeze emotions. So you have to work hard in postproduction to bring back that emotion that really existed at the time you pressed the button but your camera was not able to capture it.
The emotion is still there, hidden in the raw picture, and a good photographer can see it and bring it out for all of us to see.
VIBES: What is the most challenging part of your job?
ATTILA: Every time I have a new photoshoot it’s a personal challenge, there is always something new to figure out. But that is good and it keeps me up; I like to learn and I like to surpass my personal limits. I never liked to live within my own comfort zone.
I really believe that if I can dream something, I can do it. There is a famous quote of Henry Ford’s: “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right”. I have this quote hung on my wall and it gives me inspiration whenever I start stumbling in life.
So I like challenges because they make me realize that I can do it.
VIBES: Which camera do you use most often?
ATTILA: I have two cameras, both of them are Nikon and both of them are identical. Lenses are more important than the camera in itself. I use different focal lengths depending on what kind of photoshoot I’m having.
Actually, I also have a Canon in my gear because I am a videographer too and I believe that Canon is superior to others when we speak about videos.
When I started, another photographer told me that it’s the photographer who makes the pictures, not the camera. I can totally agree with that.
People usually think that if you get a good camera you can be a good photographer but the truth is that you can be a good photographer even if you are just using a good smartphone. It’s not the camera that makes a photographer; you need a pair of good eyes, good sense of style and again: you need a lot of practice experimenting yourself and your camera in hundreds of different situations.
VIBES: What is the best part of your job?
ATTILA: I love many aspects of my job but I guess the social aspect is probably one of the best.
I love getting to know new people and I love taking sessions in a friendly mood so we can get not only good photos but even good memories and pleasant experiences.
Furthermore if somebody is relaxed and enjoys the moment, photos will be more beautiful.
I like to make people feel comfortable; I like to talk to them, having little discussions together to get the results we are looking for.
I have known many people while I was taking photos, even important people such as actors, musicians, singers, businessmen. I made many new friends in the process and I hope I can keep on doing it.
VIBES: What makes a good picture stand out from the rest in your opinion?
ATTILA: To answer that question we should think about what you expect from a picture. We should try to understand why somebody scrolling the phone stops to take a closer look at some photos and passes over some others. What makes the difference?
Colors are very important, harmony is very important, good balances are very important. But there is something else that counts more than this. People like photos because they get emotions from them. Every kind of emotion is very attractive, even the bad ones, because people need emotions. Emotions make our life interesting, emotions are what make us feel alive and they give a meaning to what we are or who we are. So if a picture is good enough to turn your heart on with emotions that picture stands out from the avarage.
VIBES: Which photo of yours are you currently most proud of?
ATTILA: When I finish a project I can’t wait to start another because I know that the next one will give me even better pictures. So I’m continuously proud of my latest pictures.
At the beginning, it took me a few months before I got some of them published in British magazines and on Hungarian websites; that was super cool, I was very proud of myself and I realized I was on the right track. Then I shot lots and lots of new photos and although I have my own personal favorites I prefer not to let this on because I prefer giving viewers a chance to look at my pictures and elaborate their own opinion without being influenced.
VIBES: What are your plans for the future?
ATTILA: Oh, I have many. I have photographer’s eyes but I have an entrepreneurial spirit.
I would definitely like to work more on weddings because those are unique moments and I want to give people some wonderful memories. Weddings are happy moments, they are a celebration of life and I like being part of them.
I would also like to work more on videos because beautiful videos can give even stronger emotions than pictures.
Travelling for photoshoots is also part of my plans; I do it sometimes and I want to keep doing it.
Then I have some other very interesting projects I am currently working on, but at the moment I keep them for myself just to be a little mysterious.
VIBES: How can Vibes readers find you?
ATTILA: They can find me everywhere! Just googling my name Attila Kapodarca everybody can land on many pages. I’m on Facebook, Instagram, Vimeo, Flickr, Youtube and probably on some other pages/links as well.
I’m always very happy to get messages so I encourage anybody to drop me some lines.
VIBES: Thank you 🙂