RK : First of all, thank you for accepting our invitation for an interview. Please say something about you. What first attracted you to landscape photography? Do you have an educational artistic background?
[ST] : My name is Sukimin Thio, and people usually call me Kimin. I am a luxury and lifestyle photographer based in Jakarta, Indonesia. I started to learn photography in 2008, and I was attracted to landscape photography since 2015 after trying multiple genres of photography e.g. wedding, portraits, modelling, and still life. I went into landscape photography because it is the only genre of photography where I can combine my passion, hobby and career all together. I have a chance to visit many places and to share the beauty of it to many people. I don't have any artistic educational background before, I even graduated from Computerized Accounting major in college.
RK : How much preparation do you put into taking a photograph or series of photographs? Do you have any preferences regarding cameras and format?
[ST] : Everytime I travel, I always research the destination in Google. About what are the interesting objects, how is the weather, what are the culture and people, etc. I always use my Nikon full frame cameras. For DSLR I am using Nikon DSLR D5, D850 and Df, while for Mirrorless I am using Nikon Z7.
RK : What kind of tools do you use for post processing? Please explain your work flow.
[ST] : I am using several tools for post processing (Adobe Camera RAW, Adobe LightRoom Classic CC, Adobe Photoshop CC and NIK Software). I start by taking pictures using NEF (RAW Files) in my cameras, then make 2 copies them in external HDD. After that, I open the files one by one using Adobe Camera RAW to adjust the exposures. After that, I edit the picture using Adobe Photoshop CC and NIK Software to adjust the colours. The last step is apply same tone in Adobe LightRoom Classic CC. Once everything is done, I make another 2 copies in my external HDD. Note : It is very important to have more than 1 back up to secure your assets.
D. How did you set about developing your own style?
[ST] : I did trial and error. I refer to other photographers' style and consult with some other friends to get their feedback. After a while, I finally found my own style that I like.
RK : What do you like most about landscape photography?
[ST] : It is simply because I can visit so many beautiful places, admire them, capture them and share them to people.
RK : What have been your top 3 places to photograph so far and why?
[ST] : Hmmm, it's a difficult question. If I have to choose, I will choose :
1. Canada (Vancouver, Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Banff) --> It is so beautiful from every aspects. The landscape, the cityscape, the architecture and people.
2. South Africa (Cape Town) --> The city is so beautiful surrounded by the beautiful Table Mountain.
3. Japan (Kyoto) --> The tradition and culture is so strong, the people are friendly.
RK : What challenges do landscape photographers face in the near future?
[ST] : The challenge is to spare time in the midst of our daily routines and work to go out to reach beautiful landscapes. It will take courage,strong will and passion.
RK : You’ve taken thousands of photos over the years, but do you have a favorite?
[ST] : Of course, I do have some favourite photos.
RK : What's the most exciting shoot you've ever been on?
[ST] : The most exciting shoot was when I took the picture of a colony of whalesharks in Gorontalo, Indonesia. It was so thrilling and exciting to be in the water with one of the world's biggest mammal.
RK : What is the one thing you wish you knew when you started taking photos?
[ST] : The beautiful spots, weather and the surroundings.
RK : What’s next for you? What kind of projects would you like to explore in the future?
[ST] : I always dream to have my own photo exhibition and I would like to share my experience to as many people as possible.
RK : The world is full of amazing places and photo opportunities – what are some of the countries or regions you would like to visit, and photograph, in the coming years?
[ST] : I would like to explore Europe and India since there is so many things to be explored in those 2 regions.
RK : Apart from photography, do you have interest in other creative activities?
[ST] : Well not really into creative activities. My other interest is automotive. I am a big fan of BMW.
RK : Do you have any tips for photographers to help them grow artistically?
[ST] : Never stop learning, get some reference, create your own style and make your positioning.
RK : Have you ever been to India and anything you know about Indian Art & Culture?
[ST] : No, I haven't, but will definitely visit India in the future. Ladakh and Kashmir is my target.
RK : We (retrokolkata.com) are trying to make a bridge between National and International Art & Culture By featuring some National & International personalities who already have made their own path in their respective fields and we think your story and tips might help the newcomers to build their career. Please say something about our initiative and any special message for your Indian followers.
[ST] : Thank you so much for bridging me to the photographers in India. You guys are fantastic, and I can't wait to visit India and to meet some of you to take photos together. And if you have a chance to visit Indonesia, please just send me a text.
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