Interview-Mina Delic: The moment is the best inspiration

Perfect shooting does not exist.
— Mina Delic

-Do you agree that you are challenged everyday to create something that has never been created before?

It has always been the biggest human yearning to create something new, even if it is not new in a meaning of what is known to this world, yet it is new to our persnal creative selves. Yes, every time when I work on a fashion or some another project, I am trying to reveale the new in it. It is maybe just one tiny sparkle of one particular feeling in that one particular moment in which recipient sees my work. After that one moment, they can run back to the reason and say – this light set up I already saw, this make up, that hairstyle also, wardrobe, models, poses – seen. But that first blink, kepturing the magic of the work. It matters. And even if my photo stopped your look for one moment – I achieved.

-Can you describe your creative process? What do you look for when creating a shoot and do your shoot line up to be what you expected?

Idea comes from a moment, flash. Maybe from a model’s face, or one dress, or studio background, or specific location, color, song, part of the day, year. And it is very often something I do with – improvisation. Because till now I cannot say that I really had a perfect working condition. It is always something that goes “wrong” and it is “unexpected”. It is so often that I started appreciating that “wrong”, because it makes my project what it is in the end and “unexpected” I am always expecting. Crazy, right? I suppose all the creative people in the world need to pass through this process before they are established. Sometimes I am asking myself, what will happen to my (fashion) work once I really start to dance how the fashion industry plays…

-You have to have a favorite artist in mind that drives your creativity or inspires you, who is it?

The moment is the best inspiration. Lately I found myself drifted in too much visual violence, too much other photographer’s work influencing my brain and I just realized – I need to stop doing that. People always tells you to look to others work, to find inspiration etc. But then, if you are not careful enough, you can easily make a mistake and fall into abyss of imitation, reproduction of something that is not originally your idea. I am a big fan of improvisation. In that crazy undefined mental area of creation lies the true power. Of course, when you work with team of a nice number of people, you need to explain them your idea, you need to make that well known moodboard. And this is the part when you actually ruin a bit your original concept – while constructing visual identity of your story based on others work. But it is a must when working on bigger projects. Especially if they are ordered / financed by a client.

-How would you describe yourself as a person & artist?

Shapeless. Free. Bold. Risk taker. With a dose of elegance.

-How did you know you wanted to be a photographer?

I didn’t. My mother told me. I wanted to make a joke from this, but – it’s true. Even if photography was always somewhere beating inside me, I just didn’t know it. She advised me to take a first step. That’s how I started learning photography, while I was studying Journalism. Even after a while, I still didn’t know that photography is really something that defines me on its specific undefined way, but other people saw it. And one day I started calling myself a photographer. And here I am. Trying not to disgrace my profession and my colleagues.

-Do you have a favorite designers who inspire you? Why is that?

I am definitely not someone who is blindly someone’s admirer. I always appreciate good quality work and creativity and at the same time I can be a passionate critic. One thing is sure, I favor emerging young designers, the one who are full of creative energy and enthusiasm, still not pushed into mechanism of industry, still with free vision and power to make an impact. I would like to encourage all young creatives, at the very beginning of their professional path, not to fall for big words, big names. To dream big is nice, if it is your dream. Every time I watch McQueen or Chanel or other big brands, starting to be rootless, without that first breath of idea that is lost somewhere in the past, I am asking myself – who is behind this work and why is he hiding? Cherish your name, your freedom and independence. It is sometimes the only certain thing that you have in this life.

-In the artistic world of photographers, do you see yourself not only trying to achieve your perfect shoot but also being known for your work?

Perfect shooting does not exist. There is just bunch of imperfection that makes a project… well – perfect in a way. But every time I strive to be better. I don’t know from whom or what, just better all the time. Even if I don’t have a formula to do that. I just do it. In time people are starting to recognize the power in you, the style of your work, your strength of creation despite of all potential and very real issues, misunderstandings, struggles, failures. I think the one should stick to that small inner plan, to put together all your chaotic cubes in your head and try to be greater according to your own vision of greatness and leave the outside world to see you and your work how they want. If they want.

-What was the main reason that you decided to become a photographer?

Probably the fact buried deep inside my being – that I was always a photographer even before I knew I will be one, even before I had my first camera, even before I was born. If you believe in such a things… The most beautiful answer that you can give to the big life question “Why are you who you are?” is – I don’t know. I just am.

-Tell me about your latest shoot. What was your vision when you created it?

Prints and patterns. This was the theme of my latest shooting I did this week. It is actually the first shooting ever that I made concretely following the submission theme of one magazine. At the moment I am in Milan, Italy. I came here two months ago to take next step in my photography life. Here I faced with many new challenges and learned a lot. This shooting I made with two amazing female models Roxan and Petra from Ice Models, young and talented stylist Marco Costa, make up artist Erica Roveretto from MUD Studio and Chiara Scafuro as a hairstylist, with emerging designers clothing from MAD Zone store. They all helped me to bring the concept of project to live. Prints, patterns, crazy colors, crazy mood. All together – perfect and I cannot fully express my gratitude to all of them.

-To be a photographer, you had to undergo a lot of struggles. What was the most difficult obstacle for you when putting together a shoot?

The most difficult parameter when putting together a shoot is to put together a shoot. You need to start from somewhere. Someone needs to give you the first hint. My someone was my great friend, incredibly creative and innovative fashion stylist Srdjan Sveljo. My first editorial I did with him around three years ago. Since then I am slowly upgrading my work, with him beside me as much as we have time to work together. In the near future we are already planning few of nice projects. Maybe I should mention here that I am also a model, so getting in touch with the fashion world was kind of easier. Designers, make up artists, hairstylists, agencies etc. already knew me or they knew other people who knew me, so I could cover all my projects needs.

When I came to Milan I faced with that one big problem – I had no contacts here. Still, one contact was enough to make a network of contacts. Also social platforms helped to connect, so I managed to find great creative professionals to work with.

The biggest issue in working on a project is – no budget. Everything I ever did was for free or with costs on my behalf. Sometimes I share costs for (example) studio rent with designers who participate, or with stylist, or model. It depends. And then begging people to work with you for free, trying to convince them in the greater good (even if your stomach is empty, but heart full of joy and enthusiasm and head full of ideas and creativity)… People like to get good things for free, it is always interesting for me to watch, analyze. But when something is for free, people sometimes don’t take it seriously enough. Team members canceling their participation, being late on the shooting, models coming with fake half painted nails to shooting etc. Lots of details that make you crazy and make you want to give up! But no. There is no give up. Never.

-Does your personal life ever effect how you compose your shoots or do you have a set schedule/ formula that you follow? What is it exactly?

My formula is that I don’t have a formula. Maybe not too clever, but gives me enough space to breathe and think and be creative. My personal life is pushing me to travel a lot. I think I just started my journey in that direction and it seems it will be decisive for my work in the future.

-Who excites you the most (Celebrity) & why?

I am excited with all creative people I met in my life. When you see someone’s powerful enthusiastic aura you feel that energy filling you up and you are ready to continue your fight.

-How is your style of photography different from any other photographers?

I don’t know. People say that I have my style, they can see it. Not sure if I can see it, but I am not stressing myself with that. Each project has its own mood and I am creating it with particular attention and complete commitment.

-What are your world-dominating goals?

As one experienced fashion photographer told me when I asked him the big HOW – just do your thing, he said.

So… I do my thing.