One of the most amazing aspects of what we do as creatives is getting to know other creatives, contributing to their business growth, and witness their achievements as through years a simple transaction transcends into friendships and kind connections. Our connection with Gaja is not an exception, and when we were in Berlin last year for the Loft Workshop organized by our friends Julia&Gil, we couldn’t miss the opportunity to meet up with Gaja and bond over a couple’s shoot & cup of coffee. Read the article below on this girl’s experience of making Germany her home and running her Photography business while traveling between New York and Berlin.
- Gaja, you were born in Slovenia, yet you live and call Germany your home now. How and why did you decide to move to Berlin?
In my final year of studies I decided to do an internship somewhere abroad, I honestly never taught about Berlin before, so that was a weird coincidence that I ended up in that city. I moved in believing I will go back home after 4 months, but I never left. I loved the way life unfolded itself and I just stayed. It’s been almost 6 years.
- We also know that you’ve been traveling a lot to New York and working there. How do you feel about New York? Could it be a potential new home for you in some years from now?
New York City was a coincidence as well. I just go with the flow, work hard on my dreams and in a field I love; in between I try not to overthink or over-plan my life.
New York has a lot in common with Berlin. It’s a weird weird place where everything is a hustle, but you must love it. The environment really inspires and pushes you. I could definitely see myself moving there someday but as said, let’s see…:)
- Can you tell us your story? How did you become a photographer and what genre resonates with you the most?
My brother bought himself a camera years ago and unfortunately, never had the time to use it, so he ended up gifting me the camera when I was in my early 20s. Photography came into my life pretty late. I do not have one of the stories “I picked up a camera at the age of 5 and I knew what I wanted right away.” I do not come form an artistic family but I myself always was creative and interested in arts, although I never really knew what to do with it. I shot my first real wedding while doing my masters in Berlin and I fell in love with it. People resonate with me the most. I love how a simple touch, a look, wrinkles, a move, etc. can tell a thousand stories.
- How do you find the photography community in Germany in terms of inspiration, motivation and support?
I think the community in Germany is amazing. I somehow ended with a lot more colleagues in Hamburg than in Berlin, but I think the environment is extremely supportive. I do not feel the negative competition at all. Everybody is helping each other out, being very supportive and inspiring. It’s great, or maybe I am just lucky I found the right people.
- What were the most difficult challenges that you had to face as a photographer?
The business and bureaucracy part is quite hard for me. I tend to forget I do not just take pictures and edit them. There is so much more behind running a little business - this is definitely an area I am still learning a lot.
- How would you define a successful photography career?
I think success is different from individual to individual. For me success is when I will be able to balance all the aspects and interests in my life - from reaching the goals for my photography business, not overworking and still having time for myself and time for family and friends. It’s hard, but that’s success to me. Balance.
- Everybody has a dream. What is yours?
It’s very hard to put it in words. I can definitely envision it but not articulate it. Simply put, I wish to own a studio with associates and work on wedding and family photography.
- Apart from always having a skilled partner to take your instagram photos, what is it like to date another photographer?
Ha! :D It’s great and I love it. I do not have to explain myself that I edit until 4am, that I work weekends, I always have a partner to discuss certain topics, ask for advice, I can take his charged batteries or he takes my empty memory cards. It’s a nice balanced team work, without being a team as we try to not work together. Our styles are so different it’s also refreshing and inspiring and a great source of inspiration.
- What or who inspires you? Who are your favorite photographers & artists whom you look up to?
I do not have a list of people I look up to. I try to get inspired outside of wedding photography. I love to go to museums or art galleries, old movies have such poetic frames and I always love to peek into my grandmothers shoebox filled with photographs.
- Coffee or coca cola?
- Banana Bread or Carrot Cake?
- Canon or Nikon? ?
- Berlin or New York
- Color or Black and White?
Black and white
- Growing old in a cosmopolitan city or by the ocean?
Growing old by the ocean!
- What are your plans for the next couple of years?
Chase the dream, work hard for it and have fun along the way.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this feature interview with Gaja. Make sure to head on to her brand new website built with Leia Design kit, to check out her amazing body of work.
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