Vincent Brod is a talented photographer from Germany. His portfolio consists of portraits and travel photos, all of which are strikingly emotive and gracefully framed. I had the chance to talk to him about his creative beginning, how he handles creative blocks, and more. I hope this interview inspires you to make the most of your camera, to be endlessly curious, and to value quality over quantity.
What inspired you to start taking photographs?
When I was about twelve years old there was this Nikon commercial which took place in India at the Holi festival. As soon as I saw the amazing colours and the depth of field I knew that I wanted to create images like these myself. From then on I couldn’t stop seeing the world with photographers' eyes. Isn’t it crazy how advertising influences us?
You take spectacular travel photos. What advice would you give to a photographer who's about to travel?
Make sure to plan time to photograph into your daily schedule and always have your camera by your side.
What's the most valuable thing, art-wise, that travelling has taught you?
To take the right photos. When I visited Angkor Wat in Cambodia I went there three times. For sunrise, sunset and to see the other temples. All around me were people snapping pictures furiously without even looking. Photography is about quality, not quantity.
When it comes to photographing nature, what do you find most challenging?
Waiting for the perfect light for a photo can be super frustrating sometimes. I’m not a fan of waiting but I’m a fan of perfect light, so I usually annoy myself because of my impatience contradicting with my perfectionism.
If you could give your younger self one piece of artistic advice, what would it be?
Never think about not bringing your camera to vacation ever again! Once I was in Italy for 10 days, including a day trip to Rome, I didn’t bring my camera cause I thought it wouldn’t be worth it. I’m never doing that again.
How do you handle creative blocks?
The best way to handle a creative block for me is to take simple portraits of a person and see where I can go from there. It helps to portrait a person the way they are, without a special location or idea. It’s like learning how to take photos again and starting from scratch. When I do that I often play with Lightroom as well and I mostly come out with a whole new color palette or some new tricks for editing.
Are there any photography genres you'd like to experiment with more?
At the moment I am very happy with travel and people photography but I would love to go from styled shoots to a more documentary style.
What has been your greatest creative accomplishment?
Finding my own photographic style and knowing my aesthetic. I think when you know how to achieve a certain look or idea you simplify your artistic process and it is easier to concentrate on the important things.
Who are your favourite artists and why?
For years I followed the photography of Kristian Schuller and Annie Leibovitz. What I love about Kristian’s art is the spectacular compositions, costumes and crazy ideas. Annie on the other hand takes amazing yet simple portraits. The way these two photographers see people fascinates me and also gives me inspiration in the way how I see the subjects of my photos.
If you had the opportunity to travel anywhere right at this moment, where would you go?
There are at least 10 places coming into my mind right now, but if I had to choose I would love to travel through Vietnam for a month.