Here’s an exclusive interview with Viviana Peretti for Photoion Photography School. Viviana is a documentary photographer living between New York (USA) and Bogota (Colombia). Her work has been published in many international media such as CNN, New York Times, BBC etc. She is the winner of the category ‘Arts and Culture’ in the ‘2014 Sony World Photography Awards’.
Viviana is coming from the tradition of film photography but has been increasingly using her mobile phone to create stunning images.
PPS: Hi Viviana, why photography?
V.: Probably because I am a very bad singer!! Kidding. I guess because I am a shy person, I don’t like to talk too much and I always saw photography as a way to talk a more intense and articulate international language.
Many years ago I was in Salamanca, Spain, for an Erasmus. I went to see an exhibition by Sebastiao Salgado about the drought in the African region of Sahel. I left the exhibition with a great sense of desperation but also with a new purpose in life: being a photographer, someone that can speak such powerful language. It took me two extra years after the exhibition to join the magical universe of photography and that happened in Colombia in 2000. I got a scholarship for a PhD in Anthropology and I had the good fortune to start a photography class with Magdalena Agüero, an amazing photographer and teacher that saw something in my images that was unclear to me, and pushed me to explore my hidden desire to be a photographer. She was talking about a great sense of light and composition, together with an incredible ability to capture daily life on the streets of Bogota. Since then, I have not stopped taking pictures. Obviously it is my job, but it is also what and who I am as a human being. Being a photographer it is just my way to be in the world.