Anna Linden is a photographer with about 15 years of hands-on experience. She has been working as a professional photographer since 2014, specializing in business photography.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.
I repatriated to Israel in 1997, and pretty much right away started my “hi-tech” path – programming in the school, Mamram (programming course) and 4 years as a programmer in the IDF, then a long time working as a DBA. So I come from a very technical field, I have a good head for it. But, I never loved what I was doing, and at some point I felt like I was wasting my life away and needed a change. By then I was already photographing for many years as a hobby and loved it. So I decided to try to do commercial photography for a living. So far, I’m developing my little business, it’s going pretty well, and I’m cautiously optimistic about the future.
How did you develop an interest in photography?
In a way, it was all about control for me. I didn’t care about photography at all when I was a child and a teenager. But, when the first tiny digital cameras appeared, and I took a few shots with my friend’s camera, I suddenly saw how I can make the frame look cool, how I can control what’s in a picture. And it fascinated me, so I started learning and took a course for beginners. I think it was back in 2003. I had a long romance with photography since then, and the feeling is still there. What’s strange is that a lot of people started their photographer’s story from shooting film, but for me it was different – first digital cameras, and only then I started shooting and developing film. Of course, when things got real I chose to switch back to – this time serious and far from tiny – digital equipment.
What was the first camera you used?
Nikon Coolpix, a tiny cute thing, that didn’t even have most of the manual controls.
What equipment do you prefer to use today?
Canon 5D Mark IV (since my film days I can only shoot full-frame, don’t like how the cropped matrix makes a picture lose some depth). I have a few lenses, zoom and fixed focal length ones. My favourite for portraits is 85mm prime, and I prefer primes in general – although for studio shots my 24-70L lens is perfectly fine.
What do you enjoy most about photography?
I think it’s the balance between what you plan and what unexpectedly happens at the photoshoot. I like planning, creating, brainstorming, thinking about what light I should use, what ideas will fit the client’s business – but the moment when the magic happens is when you catch something unplanned and beautiful – maybe some game of light and shadows, maybe an emotion. But I guess that specific moment caught on film/matrix is what’s special about photography, especially when you shoot for “fun” and not restricted by the client’s desires.
What is your specialty?
I call myself a business photographer – I do everything that helps promote a business : image photoshoots (headshots), content for sites and social networks, packshots and lifestyle compositions, fashion catalogs and lookbooks (fashion is just a different kind of business after all).
Which project have you enjoyed working on the most so far?
Something new, different and exciting is happening all the time, so I don’t think I can point my finger to anything specific. But I guess if I had to, I’d name something that I recently started, and it doesn’t involve any shooting at all – I developed a seminar for non-photographers that explains the basics of creating a successful shot (be it with your mobile phone or a camera). I had 2 groups so far and am super excited about how it went.
Do you work with an assistant photographer?
I’m not a big enough business at the moment, so I work solo. Moving all the heavy stuff by myself.
What advice would you give an aspiring photographer?
Practice! A lot. And if you want to succeed, focus on something specific – don’t call yourself a photographer of everything and everyone. Choose something that you love the most.
What do you want to achieve with your work and what are your wishes for the future?
Since I don’t consider myself an artist, I just wish for a huge commercial success. Not a lot to ask, is it?
How can our readers book you and where can they find out more about your work?