Conversation with the photographer
“Why is a focal depth needed if it does not carry a great depth of feeling” – Eugene Smith.
I often think of this saying. I think of it every time I have e photograph which fascinates me. I think it is every ones right to know how such a photograph is born, or it’s created. Therefore, every time I can, I ask this kind of things to the photographers I know. I think they should tell us their paths for us to follow. That is why I interview them. In the case of Fotopasion, this is my second interview. After Armando Babani of the last issue, this time my pen knocked beyond the ocean… A photographer who does not need too many introductions because the name says it all: Mr. BUJAR VESELI (VESELAJ)
- What is photography for the Veselaj family and how did Bujar started it? It seems very common bun it’s in our public interest a presentation of the personal career and your origin as a photographer as well, or maybe a joke related to it?
Photography to (Veseli) Veselaj family is an on going businesses. At the beginning it was my father Reﬁ k Veseli, that started this beautiful profession at a very young age. Thanks to my father, this profession got into my mothers, mine and my brothers, Fatmir. He also gave this passion to other relatives and friends. Now i will tell something about myself. As i mentioned, I came from a photographers family as for that, since i was a child i grew up with its terms. Even thought I was young I remember to be very interested to see my father turning black and white photographs into colored one through oil paint. Lately i started drawing like him. At that time the colored photography didn’t exist. Seeing my desire to learn, my father gave me a Taxona camera with my name carved in it, for my 15-nth birthday
- What is the relation between art and photography in your work?
As I mentioned before, in our family, we used to talk about photography. As a child I always wanted to draw and to remake the animated tails. I studied at Jordan Misja School of Art for painting, but the impact of photography was stronger, that`s why I gave my self to the passion of photography. I worked as a photographer at Tirana`s Archaeological Museum, Ylli (Star) Magazine and at the Higher Agricultural Institute. With the democracy coming my brother and i opened our studio “Photo Studio Sport , Veseli). In every institution archive there are hundreds of negavites with my name in it. You ask me what is the relation between art and photography, for me photography is an art itself. As the painting is an art, so is photography. Some people don`t like it and don`t agree with me, but this is my opinion and no one can change that
- What’s you favourite subject in photographs?
I can say I prefer almost every subject. I don’t like too much journalistic photography. It’s not that I don’t like it, but I don’t feel it that much. I adore portraits, artistic photographs that I enjoy shooting no matter how tired I am..
- How much did your work change with digital photography? I mean the inevitable update every photographer must make also on their work and in relation to themselves. So, Bujar and technolog?
Bujar and technology; As i adore photography with every bit of my soul, I also adore digital technology. As a curiosity, and this I can tell for sure, I was the ﬁ rst to introduce in Albania the digital photography (if i will have the opportunity, there is a story behind that which I can tell).
For me, who is still using ﬁ lm is afraid to accept the new technology (even though now it’s not so new anymore). I could make a vulgar association: It’s like hand washing your shirts, like our grandparents, or washing them with the machine. Digital photography is a technology that no one knows its limits yet.
- Emigration and Bujar? Emigration and photography? Our readers are interested in these relations and the stories behind them.
For me, emigration was a second school about the art of photography. My current job position has helped me a lot too. It’s a professional lab of photography, NATURAL COLOR LAB. We print photographs for many photographers of some of the America’s countries, and you can imagine that I have in my hands some really ﬁ ne photographs. Here where I live, there is a total difference in the outlook compared to Albania. We used to work to advance in our investments, a race for having the better equipment. It is very rare in here to see photographic shops who print as well. The photographers send their pieces through e-mail, and their prints are sent beck to them through standard mail (their correctness is indisputable). There are some studios who are starting to send their client’s works too; in this case we send the prints directly to the client and bypass the studios for time saving. One more thing. It is not unusual here to see galleries of several photographers which are close to each-other. The opposite thing happens in Albania, where photographers are taken by anger and jealousy.
- We have a new public, mostly amateurs. It is obvious that I should ask you questions for those who are just starting in this passion, or are asking to grow as professionals. Also I wanted to ask you some advices about what they should start shooting and how to do that in Albania?
My advice, for the amateur and the professional, is that the Internet is a school that teaches with joy. Who wants to be a photographer, should love this profession. Only if the passion is so strong, you will feel the results of this love
- To ﬁnish, I wanted to know if there is a dream you always wanted to make true. What is still left undone, that you wish to realize in the near future, of course, related to photography?
My dream is, and will always be, a modern photographic studio.
Text and interview: Julinda Mbrica
Published in the online magazine Fotopasion.