ISPWP Interviews Daniel Dumbrava, Targoviste, Romania Wedding Photographer

Posted by Admin on August 13th 2018

The ISPWP recently reached out to some of the top contest winners of the ISPWP Spring 2018 Wedding Photography Contest. We wanted to find out more about them and their thoughts on photography, weddings, and what makes them tick. 

Here is our interview with Daniel Dumbrava, a Targoviste, Romania wedding photographer. Here is how he describes himself:

"We believe in a classic style, a simple, natural, soft photography. We try to combine as natural and less-invasive as possible photojournalism with the artistic part of photography. But most important, we try to tell your story as it is, capturing in images moments that you will realize that exist only when viewing the photo book."

What's your favorite challenge about shooting weddings?
Although I have photographed hundreds of weddings, I am still nervous on the morning of the event. This is my challenge, to stay in touch with my emotions and to be able to feel the groom's and the bride's emotions too.

Do you pre-visualize photos before you execute them, or do you find inspiration more on-the-fly?
I do not have a list of what to do and what not to do. I learn and adapt during the event. I have experience in photographing hundreds of weddings so I can focus very well in stressful conditions. This is my job as an event photographer. I am able to feel that something is going to happen, I am able to use my intuition and experience to be there. Of course, there are a lot of new moments and I can get inspired instantly right then and there. Is quite a complex job to be a wedding photographer!

What's your best advice to couples who want really amazing and unique wedding photos?
Be there, be yourself, get in touch with your feelings, focus on the good moments during the day, do not worry about what is not important. You have one day, one chance, to marry your one love! Of course choose a good photographer, someone who is able to connect with you, to see and understand what you want. Choose the right photographer according to your style of life.

What is your approach to photographing portraits of the bride and groom on the wedding day?
I give a lot of importance to the portraits on the wedding day. It is a unique day, a unique feeling, a unique photo of who the bride was on that day, how she looked, how she felt.

How do you feel about photographing a first look?
I'm trying to be less invasive.

How would you describe your post-processing "look" for your photos?
I give great importance to post-processing. I work manually with my camera and a try to offer my clients natural pictures, as much as I can.

Do you think it's important to evolve your style of photographing weddings through the years?
Certainly it is. We are not able to grow and learn if we are not critical with our photos.

Have you ever had a really difficult working situation? How were you able to make beautiful images in that situation?
Yes, I have. I was not a good fit for the couple's style and tried to do the best I could in that situation. It was very stressful but finally I was proud to have succeeded. In that day I remembered that this couple paid me, they have only one special day, and I have only one chance to photograph this day, this is no longer about me and my style, it is about them and their memories.

What do you think makes the difference between a good wedding photo and an award-winning wedding photo?
All my award-winning photos were taken at regular weddings but with people full of life, involved and without restraint. Yes, when you have a great location you can make good photos too and maybe with some luck win some awards too. But the people count after all, they are the most important element in a wedding photo.

What kind of lighting situations are your favorite to manipulate on a wedding day? 
I use natural light but I also have a favourite light, a source of yellow light to isolate the subject.

What do you do when you start to feel "stale" to inspire you photographically?
Difficult question...I try to get out of my comfort zone. I move a lot, I try pictures that sometimes I don't like. I get inspired by other photographers and try to see in another way. I don't know...I leave my mind free.

What would be your dream location, or your "bucket list" area to photograph a wedding in?
A wedding of authentic Romanian Gypsies, a wedding in Dubai, a wedding of a royal couple, and a silver wedding between two old people.

What unique challenges are involved with wedding photography in destination weddings and how do you deal with them?
The culture, and the traditions that you are not aware of. 

What kinds of challenges do you assign yourself to the way you "see" on a wedding day? 
I try to not have any expectations on a wedding day because this could block me and limit my creativity.

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