Vincent Pflieger is one of our select judges for this year's TEN AND ONE Awards. Hailing from Paris, France, Vincent has been traveling all around photographing the streets of whatever city he's in. Working with anyone from high profile people such as A$AP Rocky to just people on the street. Vincent's eye and love for analogue keeps us coming back to his images.
Hello! Welcome to the Lomography Magazine. Please introduce yourself to our readers.
Born in raised in Paris, I arrived in New York City to finish my dual degree in journalism and media analyses at NYIT. At the time, I was doing film photography as a hobby, nothing more. Since then, and once my studies over, I get involved in the food design company of a friend and work now as a head photographer in our studio in Brooklyn. Like photography in general, I started shooting food photography by chance, thanks to the connection and opportunities I met when I was not a professional yet.
How did your interest with photography start?
I started photography totally randomly, when I found at home my dad’s analog camera. I started using it on a regular basis just for fun, on my way to school, then to work. Step by step, I wanted to do something more serious and I went out on the streets of Paris in order to shoot everything that was appealing to my eyes. Usually a good average session can last 6 hours.
How would you define photography?
There is no one and only definition of photography, or one purpose. It’s a visual medium that can be use as an informative and journalistic purpose, as well as fine art, or both. For me, I use photography as a personal diary. I also write, but image helps me to keep visual memories before my brain lose everything when I get old. Like a song, a picture can bring back a thousand memories of a particular period of life.
What makes it worth pursuing?
The envy to provide good work and the love of your art! And no matter where you start cause there is no limit where you’ll end. There are so many kind of photography that you can spend years to know what you really want and what drives you the most. I love what I’m doing but I won’t make my career about food or street photography. There are so many other things I want to try, that what makes me want to pursue.
What inspires you?
Hard to say, inspiration is everywhere! I try to keep an open mind about everything and stay connected to all sorts of art and all kind of culture. Music is very important in my work process. Of course, I keep an eye on other photographer’s work, but I’m more inspired with classic photographer such as Bruce Davidson, Williamd Eggleston, or Stephen Shore… I have always loved video too and watch a lot of movies, short feature films and music videos. I already worked in the music video field, but I’ll try to work more in the cinema industry later.
What makes a good photographer?
I think that photographers who tend to constantly evolve and don’t take what they shot as a piece of art are more willing to progress and become good in their field. Someone said once that the good photograph is the one you’ll take tomorrow, and not the one you took yesterday. Everyone is able to take a good photograph nowadays, especially since everyone has a camera included in his or her phone. But what make a good photographer is the body of work you provide and what you want to transmit.
Self-criticism is the key. You absolutely need to be your first critic so you should know what’s wrong in your pictures and how do you want to progress. I’ve never been happy in the long term with my picture. Sometimes I am happy to have a good shot in my roll, but when I take a look at it some days or week later, the excitement disappeared and I’m not so amazed anymore.
I’m glad and flattered when people tell me that my pictures are beautiful, but I will always listen more to the critics than the praises.
Any advice that you’d like to give aspiring photographers?
Don’t be afraid to persist and spend hours everyday doing what you like. Nothing happens by being lazy, and it’s true for every aspect of life. If you want to learn photography I would of course encourage you to start with a fully manual analog camera. Take the time to look for what you want and you’ll know what you like. Then, everything is possible.