For French photographer Nathalie Dufaur-Dessus, taking a photograph is more than just finding the perfect lighting or composition—it’s about sharing a piece of oneself to the audience through an emotional visual story. Dive deeper into the mind of our TEN AND ONE Awards judges in this interview.
Name: Nathalie Dufaur-Dessus
Location: Mazamet-Aussillon, in south western France
What are your other interests besides photography?
I love Asia, doing home-exchanges to travel across the world and discover other cultures and making Japanese dolls with chiyogami paper.
What does photography mean to you?
For me, photography means the desire to share my own vision of the world around me. I think photography mirrors our emotions. It’s the way I express myself especially with every portrait I make. So photography represents a part of me.
How did you get started in photography?
In the early 90s, when I was still a student, some friends of mine were good photographers. They considered photography more as an art than a hobby. They gave me the desire to take pictures. On June 1990 (I still remember the date!), I bought my first single reflex camera, a Minolta dynax 7000i. At this time I only sought after the perfect techniques, I often lacked originality or creativity and now I realize it was a beginner’s mistake!
What makes a good photography?
How to explain this kind of feeling…
A picture looks good when it gives you deep emotions—those incredible, terrific sensations. Every time you say “Wow! Such a pretty good image!”
It can be either a poetic composition with magical creativity doubled by the perfect light or a stunning street shot taken at the right place, at the right moment, or a strong image of war depicting cruelty of the fight.
Whatever the content, an excellent photography always dazes through its aesthetic or significance. I love images that has remarkbale style and details. I like it when a photo tells a story. A good photograph must be emotional and has to make sense.
What is your fondest photographic memory?
What a tough question! I have several pleasant photographic memories but one of them is special for me. In the Jade Emperor’s pagoda in Saigon (Vietnam), the sunlight was sifting through the rooftop creating shadows that blend with the candle’s smoke. It created a delicate painting-like scene which sets an inspirational mood. I’ll never forget that rare moment.
I love night shots too. I met very unique people while I was taking photos in the streets of Dotonbori area in Osaka or Kabuki-cho in Tokyo, Japan.
What advice would you give someone who seriously wants to pursue and succeed in this craft?
Be sincere and take pleasure in what you do. Make the entire world your playground! Everyone should take pictures as he likes! So don’t limit your creativity! Listen to your inspirations. The technical rules aren’t actually so important and the photos have to illustrate your own sensations. Photography is an endless adventure without limits, trust yourself and never give up!