Alexandru Nicusor Matei is a 22-year-old Romanian photojournalist and photographer. He has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Communication and entered the world of professional photography two years ago. His dream is to do social and war photojournalism because he says it is the “toughest, most exhausting type of photography (both from a mental and physical perspective)”. Let’s wish him luck in achieving his goal, get to know him better though this interview and enjoy some of his work through a Windows theme.
Introducing Alexandru Nicusor Matei
We had a brief dialogue with Alexandru, in which we learned a bit more about him:
What keeps you running 24/7?
Ambient, chillout and techno music, black tea with a tint of milk and the need to tell stories through images. Oh! And let’s not forget about dark chocolate. Loads of it!
When did you start being friends with photography?
About six years ago, when I began taking photos with my mother’s pocket camera. It was a cheap Canon camera, rather small and buggy. Even so, I loved taking photos with it. I took shots of the sky, landscapes, macros and even close-ups. I bought my first camera two years ago - a budget DSLR. Since then, photography has been an integral part of my life - its digital extension in a way. :) This camera allowed me to work for various media publishers (both foreign and Romanian) on some interesting projects.
What's the most important thing to follow when taking a photograph?
Your guts. You need to listen to your inner self, feel the image, the surroundings, the vibes in the atmosphere. Shoot when you feel the setting is right! Oh... And don't always stick to the rules. Some of the best photographs have big composition errors.
I own a budget DX frame Nikon D3100 with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6, 55-200 f/4-5.6 and 50mm f/1.8 lenses. The software I use includes Nikon’s View NX for RAW image processing, Microsoft Image Composite Editor (ICE) for stitching together panoramic pictures and Adobe Lightroom for post-processing. As a photojournalist I am against altering photos, so I usually keep away from Adobe Photoshop.
What do you recommend for beginners?
As a camera, any budget DSLR with or without kit lens. They should shoot ONLY in Manual mode and without flash. It’s the best way to become a pro, as fast as possible. After they manage to master the shutter speed, exposure and ISO settings, while sticking to the basic composition rules, they should begin experimenting on film. You can’t get more personal to a photograph than shooting in film. In terms of software, Adobe Lightroom is a must!
What is your favorite type of photography - portrait, landscape, still life - what makes you zoom focus and capture?
Social and war photojournalism. It’s the toughest, most exhausting type of photography (both from a mental and physical perspective). What can I say, I love challenges.
That doesn’t mean I don’t like to work with other kinds of photography. If I were to choose from other types of photography, I would go for shots that capture unexpected elements, from portraits to long exposure shots.
What other artists do you follow?
I usually follow photographers that work for different news agencies. I recommend NOORimages.com and MAGNUMphotos.com for their great collections of images, shot by accomplished photojournalists and documentary storytellers.
What's your plan with photography from here on?
Basically, becoming a war photojournalist, but I am open to all opportunities, including fashion, sports or advertising photography. I am planning on investing in film camera gear. I believe that, once I can work without a hitch on film, I will be able to work fast and flawlessly on a professional DSLR.
If you had to chance to take one last photo what would you definitely have in it as main element?
The sky, because of its limitless span. It resembles in a way the human imagination: so simple in its beauty, yet so complex when you analyze it.
Enjoy Alexandru’s Work Through a Windows Theme - Download Links
Alexandru shared some of his best shots with us and we set them up in two Windows themes, one for Windows 7 and one for Windows 8. The theme is the same in both operating systems.
Follow Alexandru Nicusor Matei
You can follow Alexandru on Facebook at AlexN.photo. We would like to thank him for this interview and for sharing some of his best works. If you enjoyed this Windows theme, don’t hesitate to follow Alexandru and be up-to-date with all his work.