Photographer in Focus:

INA MOANA

Interviewed by Millie Barnes

What makes a successful portrait in your view?

 

A portrait that reflects your creative interpretation of how you see the person. There are many photographers out there but the portraits I find mesmering are the ones that are truly unique in composition. If I look at a portrait and it causes me to think about who that person is, what they seem to be feeling or if I even start to feel certain emotions as well just by looking at the photo, that’s when I think a portrait is a successful one.

Were you always interested in taking photos of people specifically or have you ever experimented with any other subjects?

 

In the beginning, I just went for walks or had a look around my house to experiment and get to know my camera. However, quite quickly I felt that I was missing certain aspects during and after shoots such as interacting with someone, playing with accessories, light and more. So the next step I took was to set up test shoots with models. I would say I have always been interested in taking photos of people and my interest in it has only ever increased since then but it definitely took one or two product and landscape shoots to realise that. However, every once in a while I still like to go for a walk and take photos of things and the scenery around me just to unwind.

' What I strive for is to eternalise important moments and feelings for others '

What would you say the role of the photographer is in capturing these beautiful moments?

 

I think people rarely get to acknowledge the beauty of the moment and sometimes even struggle to see their own beauty. What I strive for is to eternalise important moments and feelings for others so that they are able to go right back to that moment or emotion when looking at these photos. For that to happen, I think that your role as a photographer is to find the balance between letting things unravel without interrupting and making sure to gently direct people if needed.

Is there any advice you would give to others who are also looking to get involved in photography?

 

Don’t overthink it and be sure to experiment to keep things fun. That way you will enjoy this journey the most and in my experience, will progress quicker since you and everyone around you gets to be creative to their fullest potential. Make sure to connect with people, both the ones you can collaborate with but also senior photographers as you would be surprised how many of them are happy to give you advice. Lastly, be prepared for things to take time and that it is quite likely that you have to put a lot of work, time and money into it first. That’s why, as mentioned, you should keep things fun and then it will be worth it in the end.

' Don’t overthink it and be sure to experiment to keep things fun. '

Do you have any exciting ideas planned for the future?

 

Yes and I can’t wait to work on some concept shoots with others as things hopefully get better. More and more projects have been popping up and I already completed a few in the last few weeks with more lined up for August. After all that time, it was important to me to do really creative shoots to get the most out of the very few shoots happening at the moment. Besides, the last few months made me think about all the times I struggled or others privately told me they struggled with the financial and performance based pressure in the creative industry. I am planning to be more open about these things on my platforms to normalise these feelings and create a space for others to express how they are feeling. Last but not least, I will be moving soon but I’m happy to say that I can take all the amazing experience and my portfolio with me to a place with less competition and pressure where I will be able to stand out more

C O N T A C T

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