From his start as a freelance photojournalist for newspapers to an award-winning wedding photographer, Laurentiu Nica’s journey in photography has been an interesting one. As his photography skills evolved, his perspective and motivation changed, too, especially after he started photographing weddings. Where photography once served primarily as a means to earn an income, Laurentiu grew to recognize and appreciate the meaningful impact that photography can have in people’s lives. Instead of snapping a photo to accompany a news story, Laurentiu shifted his focus and used his creative talent to tell stories through his imagery alone and preserve his client’s most important memories. We recently caught up with Laurentiu to get his unique insight into the world of wedding photography in an effort to inspire and motivate our community here at the Photo Argus, especially those considering the prospect of jumping into the wedding genre.
Welcome to the Featured Artist Series at The Photo Argus, a place where we feature the stories and work of incredible photographers from around the world. Many of these features are from the best wedding photographers over at Wedding Maps. However, we also feature photographers in other genres as well. If you’re interested in being featured, please contact us.
What’s in Laurentiu’s Gear Bag?
- 2x Sony A9
- Sony G Master FE 24mm f/1.4 GM Lens
- Sony Distagon T* FE 35mm f/1.4 ZA Lens
- Sigma 85mm f/1.4 DG DN Art Lens
- Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 Di III VXD G2 Lens
- Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD Lens
- Tamron 20mm f/2.8 Di III OSD Lens
- 7Artisans Photoelectric 10mm f/2.8 Fisheye Lens
- TTArtisan 50mm f/1.4 ASPH Lens
- 2x Godox Flash V860II (Flashpoint Version)
- Godox Flash V350
- Godox Flash AD100Pro (Flashpoint Version)
What is your favorite camera lens and why?
As a wedding photographer, my favorite camera is the Sony A9 and my go-to lens is the 35mm.
The Sony A9 is a high-performance camera that delivers fast, accurate autofocus and exceptional image quality, making it an ideal tool for capturing the fast-paced, unpredictable moments of a wedding day.
The 35mm lens is my favorite because of its versatility and ability to capture a wide range of scenes. It’s a perfect choice for capturing both wide-angle group shots and intimate portraits, and its wide aperture of f/1.4 allows me to achieve beautiful bokeh and shallow depth-of-field effects. One of the reasons I love the 35mm lens is because it allows me to get up close and personal with my subjects while still capturing the context of the scene. This makes it a great choice for capturing candid moments and authentic emotions, which are such an important part of wedding photography. Another reason I prefer the 35mm lens is its low-light performance. Many wedding venues have low light, and this lens performs exceptionally well in those situations. I can shoot at higher ISOs without worrying about noise, allowing me to capture sharp, detailed images even in challenging lighting conditions.
Overall, the combination of the Sony A9 and 35mm lens allows me to capture stunning, natural-looking images that truly capture the essence of a wedding day. Whether I’m shooting portraits, candid moments, or the details that make each wedding unique, this camera and lens combination delivers exceptional results.
How long have you been a photographer? What got you started?
I’ve been a photographer for over 15 years, having started my career in 2007 as a photojournalist for a prominent regional newspaper. This experience taught me the importance of storytelling through images and gave me a strong foundation in the technical aspects of photography.
After several years working in photojournalism, I started photographing weddings on the side. It wasn’t until 2014 that I made the transition to full-time wedding photography, drawn to the opportunity to capture the unique beauty and emotion of each couple’s special day.
Since then, I’ve been fortunate to have the opportunity to work with couples from all walks of life, capturing their love stories and creating lasting memories. Photography has been an incredibly rewarding career for me, allowing me to combine my passion for art with my desire to connect with and serve others.
What is the best part about being a photographer?
As a photographer, the best part of my job is the ability to capture and preserve moments in time. Photography allows me to freeze a moment and create a visual memory that will last a lifetime. Whether it’s a wedding or a family portrait, every photograph tells a story.
Another aspect of being a photographer that I love is the creative freedom it provides. I have the ability to express myself through my work and bring my own unique vision to each photograph I create. Photography is an art form, and I enjoy the opportunity to constantly learn and grow as an artist.
Finally, being a photographer allows me to connect with people in a meaningful way. I have the privilege of capturing special moments in my clients’ lives and creating images that will be cherished for years to come. Photography allows me to build relationships with people from all walks of life, and it’s incredibly rewarding to be able to capture and share their stories.
What is the most challenging part of being a photographer?
One of the most challenging parts of being a photographer is managing the business side of wedding photography. From marketing and booking clients to managing finances and contracts, there are many aspects of running a successful photography business that require attention and effort. Balancing the creative and business sides of photography can be a challenge, but it’s an important part of building a successful career.
What are your sources of photography inspiration?
As a photographer, my sources of inspiration are many and varied. Sometimes it’s as simple as the beauty of the natural world around me, while other times it’s the people I work with and the stories they tell. Other times I look to other photographers whose work I admire, drawing inspiration from their unique perspectives and techniques.
Travel is also a significant source of inspiration for me. Exploring new places, cultures, and landscapes opens my eyes to new possibilities and helps me see the world in a different way. Whether it’s a bustling city or a remote wilderness, each new place I visit provides fresh inspiration for my work.
Also, I find inspiration in the process of creating itself. There’s something magical about the act of capturing a moment, creating a mood, or telling a story through photography. The creative process itself is an endless source of inspiration and motivation, driving me to push my boundaries and explore new artistic possibilities.
What do you think your keys to success are in this industry?
In my experience, the keys to success in the photography industry are a combination of technical skill, creativity, business acumen, and customer service. First and foremost, a photographer must have a strong understanding of their craft, including composition, lighting, and post-processing techniques. Equally important is the ability to think creatively and bring a unique perspective to each project.
Business skills are also critical to success in this industry, including marketing, networking, financial management, and contract negotiation. Building and maintaining strong relationships with clients is essential, as word-of-mouth referrals are often the most effective form of marketing for a photographer.
A commitment to exceptional customer service is essential. Clients trust photographers to capture important moments in their lives, and it’s important to communicate clearly, meet deadlines, and deliver high-quality work that exceeds expectations. By prioritizing these key factors, photographers can build a successful and fulfilling career in this exciting and dynamic industry.
What advice would you give someone wanting to learn photography?
For someone wanting to learn photography, my advice would be to start by practicing the fundamentals. This means learning about exposure, composition, and basic camera functions before moving on to more advanced techniques. It’s also important to experiment and take risks, as this is how you will develop your own unique style and voice as a photographer.
I would also recommend finding a mentor or taking a photography course to get feedback and guidance on your work. Learning from others’ experiences and mistakes can be invaluable in accelerating your growth and development as a photographer.
And… don’t be afraid to fail. Photography is a process of trial and error, and it’s through making mistakes that you will learn the most. Keep pushing yourself, practicing regularly, and seeking feedback, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a skilled and confident photographer.
Other than your wedding work, what type of photography is your favorite and why?
Aside from my wedding work, documentary photography and images from news agencies are some of my favorite types of photography. I love the raw and honest storytelling aspect of documentary photography, and the ability to capture real moments and emotions in a candid and unobtrusive way. It’s a powerful tool for bringing attention to important social issues and creating meaningful change.
I am drawn to images from news agencies as they have the power to inform, educate, and create awareness about important events happening around the world. It’s a way to witness history in the making and to connect with people and cultures beyond our own immediate experience. Through both documentary and news photography, I believe we can create empathy, understanding, and positive change in the world.
Any final thoughts you’d like to share?
To all the wedding photographers out there, my final thoughts are to keep pushing yourself creatively and always strive to improve your craft. Embrace new technology and techniques, but never forget the importance of storytelling and capturing real moments that reflect the unique personalities and emotions of your clients.
Remember that wedding photography is about creating lasting memories for your clients, and it’s a privilege to be entrusted with such an important responsibility. Always prioritize your clients’ needs and make their satisfaction your top priority.
Stay passionate about your work and never lose sight of the joy and beauty that comes with capturing love and happiness on such a special day. By doing so, you’ll not only create amazing images but also build a successful and fulfilling career as a wedding photographer.