Meet Pablo Di Prima. Born in Spain, based in London, he is a young photographer and cinematographer, always on the hunt for stories. His portraits make strikingly good use of the available light, and through his lens he displays an intimate perspective of his subject.
How and when did you first become interested in photography?
Being brought up in Barcelona, Spain, I have always admired and had a curiosity for my father, while he was taking photos on our family trips. However, I never took photos, I only drew.
You could usually find me sketching in my maths lessons. It was only three years ago, when I did my first step to study at CSM, when I first understood I could translate what I had experienced while drawing into a new technique. That was the new excitement of photography.
What motivates you to take photographs?
To reach personal happiness. Usually when I am not creating (or trying to create) I feel empty, so I see photography as my self-therapy. I feel like my aim is trying to tell a story, that’s what always will make me and maybe others feel alive.
How has Central Saint Martins helped shape you as a photographer?
The great thing about Central Saint Martins is the variety of talented minds and constant
movement. You always bump into someone, in the corridor or in library, with whom you can share new ideas, opportunities to collaborate, learn and have fun. It is very exciting and full of vitality.
Everybody is making something that is special. It feels like going up a waterfall full of excitement and challenges.
Whose work has influenced you and how have they affected your photography?
I think I could say that my influences are photographers like Jamie Hawkesworth, Campbell Addy, Stefan Ruiz, Robi Rodriguez and Lea Colombo. Although I mostly consider I get influenced by other people which don’t necessarily do photography as their main thing. These are my friends Lucile Guilmard (Fashion Designer at CSM), King Owusu (Illustrator at CSM) and Patrick Stasny, a lovely writer. They all have a direct and personal influence on the way I work and perceive things around me. Friendships and family are the largest source of inspiration for me. Although I must say that London is a great cradle of creativity and influence in itself.
How do you turn a vision into reality?
I don’t really think I want to transform what I see into a reality. I feel adventurous trying to
materialise something existing into something more true, fantastic, new and weird.
Do you prefer working digitally or with film?
Using medium format film is a whole different thing from digital, not because of the feel of the grain and the qualities of colour and light, but because of it’s limitations. It is as simple as very expensive film rolls. This way, instead of taking hundreds of images with a
digital device, with analogue you may take only 50 photos. Then when you learn to control your emotions in photography, that’s when you really know which unique things you want to portray.
What drew you to South Ethiopia?
I went to South Ethiopia aiming to understand how certain tribes such as Karo and Morsi adorn themselves. To be fascinated by the way people use their body as a mystic canvas.
How would you like your photography to have an impact on the world?
I don’t want to make an impact on the world. I want to get
out of it.