June 20, 2011

Interview: Irene Nam

My lips curl into a smile as I think of our next guest.  I've been a long admirer of her photography, her writing, and her humanitarian work.  She reminds me to slow down and to observe the simple moments happening right in front of me.  I am happy to welcome photographer and writer - my friend:

Photo of Irene by: Andrea Sher

-Take me back and tell me a bit about how you became interested in photography.

I graduated from film school 10 years ago so I think that my work as a photographer (and anything related to my personal sense of creativity) is very much influenced by my love for movies. But it wasn’t until about 5 years ago when my husband gave me my first Polaroid camera as a Christmas present that photography became a source of inspiration, and eventually my job.

Photo by: Irene Nam

-I know that you shoot with both digital and film cameras (you actually inspired me to buy a Lomo SuperSampler a few years ago). Do you have a preference or does it depend on the day/mood?

I don’t have a preference, it really depends on location, the weather, the occasion. My camera of choice is my Polaroid sx-70, I shoot commissioned work and client sessions with a Canon 5D, and I have recently purchased a second hand Leica Minilux that I can’t wait to play with.

Photo by: Irene Nam

-Looking at your photos, I feel like you've mastered the art of capturing a single moment that tells an in depth story, but still leaves much to the imagination.  A perfect example is this, one of my favorite of your pictures.  When you go out with your camera in hand, what moments catch your attention most?

I can’t tell you what moments exactly catch my attention the most, but I can recognize them when they appear in front of me. And it’s something that you can’t predict nor force, a combination of light, simple beauty, my personal mood and the energy around.

Photo by: Irene Nam

-If I were to visit Paris next week to take a photo walk with you, tell me about the places we'd visit.

I’d take you in the Marais for sure, on Ile-Saint-Louis, the Pont-des-Arts and through the Jardin des Tuileries. We’d eat baguette sandwiches sitting along the Seine river, have coffee in Saint-Germain-des-Prés and macarons from Ladurée.

Photo by: Irene Nam

-Can you share the links to the photographers that inspire you or the books / courses that have helped you improve your photography skills?

Photo by: Irene Nam

-If you had to step out of your photographic comfort zone, what would you take a photo of?

A soccer game.

Photo by: Irene Nam

Thank you Irene for sharing a bit of your story here today.  I do hope to one day roam the streets of Paris with you, dear friend.

Bio: Irene Nam is a writer and photographer living and working in Paris, France. You can visit her blog and find her at London vs. Paris.


Anonymous said...

Yay, Irene! My Parisian sister. I hope you do get to visit, Bella. Spending time with Irene in Paris was definitely a highlight of my trip. I can't wait to go back! (I can't believe it's already been almost 4 years. Waaaa...)

Gill said...

Her work is delicious! What a talent. Great I terview Bella. Nice to "meet" you, Irene!

Gill said...

Darn phone. Lol

Irene said...

thank you Nino and Gillian for your kind words! and thank you Bella for having me and introducing me to this wonderful community.

I hope to wander the streets of Paris with you one day soon my friend. xoxo

Gail Mooney said...

Hi Irene,

Beautiful images!
We must get together again soon - in Amsterdam, Paris or NYC - or all 3.

Thanks for the shout out.