Hi Nadia, it's my honor to be able to feature on this site! So, what made you want to become a photographer? Did photography help you to escape from reality and build your own vision on this world?
What made me want to become a photographer was being able to capture moments and visions that I saw in my head in one single frame. I did study drawing and sketching and strongly thought at one point in my life to pursue becoming a painter, but I found that I couldn’t find myself putting in the time to get from point A to B. With a camera I can research, compose, collect and build a setting that will enable me to capture that picture in a frame.
Photography did help me to escape from reality. I learned very quickly that I could create a story and let the audience interpret it however they wanted to. I liked that idea very much so. Not only was I able to escape from reality, but so could others. It’s my vision being put out there and allowing others to absorb it wholly.
I can definitely see a story behind many of your images and your composition is always perfect! Now I am wondering, which photographer has influenced you the most? What have you learnt from him?
That’s a difficult question to answer. There have been and continue to be photographers that influence me in different ways. The first photographer that ever influenced me was Yousaf Karsh’s work. I loved the way he captured people and their personalities. His biggest thing was to show hands in every portrait shot. He felt that your hands were the key in telling of a person’s personality. How they looked, how they were placed, what type of body language was being conveyed, etc. That really made me think as to how the littlest details count and how to show them. Since then I have still come across other photographers that inspire and influence me. Photographers like George Hurrell, Paolo Roversi, Irving Penn, Javier Valhonrat, Peter Lindberg, Solve Sundsbo…. Both from the past and present.
I have to agree Yousaf works are amazing and yes, the hands is the signature part of his photography! Well, now let's get back to you, how will you describe your photography style?
A number of people have asked me that. I call myself a Creative Photographer. My main body of work is Fashion and that’s because I do love photographing apparels, playing with different fabrics, accessories, colors and, my most favorite part, creating scenes by using the simplest of setups. My style does also crossover to Still Life, which mostly consists of flowers. If you ask people around me what they think of my work they’ll describe it as ‘dreamy and surreal like’.
Dreamy and soft are the words I can use to describe your works as they are very soothing to my eyes. I know you do both fashion and still life photography, which one do you like to do more? Why?
Again, another tough question to answer. If I had to really choose I’d say Fashion. I get to have more fun with it. I enjoy working towards building a concept and seeing it to the end. Working with a great group of people and creating something beautiful together.
I love both of your works so maybe you should continue these 2 paths until you get tired of one of them. At this moment, I am still very addicted to your still life series, how did you come up with this concept? What was the most difficult part to shoot this series?
I shot my Still Life work last year during Christmas (Dec. 2010) as a therapeutic session for myself. I was feeling very down and you could say I wanted to capture something light and airy. What I hadn’t realized was how popular it would become. I’ve had more responses internationally in regards to my Still Life work and it’s mostly to say that they haven’t quite seen anyone capture flowers in that fashion or style.
The most difficult part to shoot was first creating the composition. I literally set it all up from scratch. Started from one petal (quite literally) and then shot after shot after shot placing flowers, sticks, branches, and then creating droplets and spraying water on set (very messy!)…. The only retouching done is removing dust spots and scratches and adding contrast where needed. The photographs are as shot.
That series is definitely one of the best still life series I have seen in recent years! Those are some amazing shot! Finally, if you could choose to have your editorial featured in one of the international magazines, which magazine would you choose? Why?
I would love to have my work featured in Vogue magazine. Mostly Vogue Italia. I love the style and type of editorial photographs in their magazine. It’s the style I’m drawn to the most. It’s surreal, beautiful and oh so awe inspiring. The photographers who shoot for them are ones whose works I follow on a regular basis.
------------------------------------Now it's time for the trivia questions!
Rose or Lily?
Sea or Mountain?
High Fashion or Street Wear?
Egypt or France?
Mac or PC?
Milk or Orange Juice?
Yellow or Green?
Day or Night?
Mars or Jupiter?
Silk or Cotton?
Thank you so much to Nadia for taking her time to answer my questions! If you want to see more of her works, you can visit her official website. All photos are courtesy of Nadia Cheema.