I am proud to present Featured Artist of the Month Belinda Greb. You are not going to want to miss this! After you are done reading the interview go and visit Belinda’s sites. Be sure to follow her on social media!
Featured Artist of the Month Belinda Greb
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Cathedral Rocks and Spires behind Merced River
Looking Out From Under North Falls
Multnomah Falls, Painterly
Hello Belinda, I am so happy you could join me today. I am a big fan of your photography and I am looking forward to learning more about your journey and your artistic style.
Dave Nevue – Where are you from?
Belinda Greb – I grew up in California. Later I moved to Oregon, then to New York for six years, and back to Oregon in 2001.
Dave Nevue – How long have you been involved with photography?
Belinda Greb –I had an interest in it since high school, so ages. I took a photography class but had to drop out because the camera I was going to use, an old Leica my dad had, was broken. I bought a Pentax SLR camera in my twenties, and later an Canon SLR. When I worked in New York, I had the opportunity to learn Photoshop through my job, and around that time, digital cameras were being introduced, so it reinvigorated my interest in photography. Suddenly I didn’t have to worry about having film that was the right ISO on hand, or enough film, or waiting to get my photos back from a processor. I had the freedom to shoot away, experiment, and control the post process. It was the equivalent of paying for the buffet meal upfront and getting to gorge away to your heart’s content.
Dave Nevue – What inspired you to be a Photographer?
Belinda Greb – I don’t think I ever set out to be a Photographer, but I grew up loving art. Los Angeles has always had great museums, and my family frequented them. My degrees are in literature and I loved to write so photography was more of a hobby. What I loved about photography was the idea of being able to preserve a moment of beauty and feeling. I loved to travel and initially my main interest was landscapes. I still love shooting landscapes, but my primary passion is now photographing wildlife above all else. There’s a certain focus and connection I feel both when I’m photographing animals or later processing their images stemming from my love for animals.
Dave Nevue – Are you self-taught or did you go to school for photography?
Belinda Greb – I am self-taught: I read, I watch videos, and I practice.
Dave Nevue – I always enjoy looking at your wildlife photos. How do you capture such beautiful images? I am sure it is much more difficult than people would believe it to be.
Belinda Greb – Well, it’s very different from shooting landscape, but to me more rewarding. I first research areas to find the best places for wildlife sightings. In the field, I watch for any signs of movement. I remember when I went to Kenya, twenty years ago, I often wouldn’t see a bird the guide was pointing out, but after that trip, my sighting skills started to improve and now sometimes instinct kicks in too. Technically, I bump my ISO to a higher setting for a faster shutter speed. I do this before I even go out so I am prepared when an animal comes into sight. I can adjust later, if the animal is sticking around or is moving more slowly, but sometimes, that’s not the case. I generally use spot focusing and al servo. There’s a level of concentration that is very zen. My telephoto lens becomes my eye and it takes me closer to the animal than I could ever be without intruding upon its space.
Dave Nevue – What inspired you to photograph nature and wildlife?
Belinda Greb – I grew up in a rural area and I grew up loving animals, so both have been an integral part of my life. I am an introvert so the peace and quiet of nature just feels right to me. I can escape feeling over-stimulated, but at the same time I feel intensely centered and connected. I always loved wildlife photography, because I’m fascinated by what their experience of life is like, especially as they are much more natural than we are.
Dave Nevue – Your work shows your love for animals. What are your favorite animals to photograph and do you have any that you haven’t yet captured but hope to someday?
Belinda Greb – I’ve come to love photographing the wild horses. They are so beautiful, and the relationships between family members are very emotional. Although I never had any horses, I was the type of little girl who played with model horses and my childhood alter ego or play-role as a horse was one that was always wild or striving to be free. So I I’ve come full circle. Also with horses, I see some on multiple occasions or can spend quite a while watching them, so there is a bond that forms, on my side. However, I love all animals. I especially enjoy watching the interactions between animals and observing their behavior in a natural habitat. When I come home, I find myself researching more about a bird variety or animal for a better understanding of what I’ve seen. While I’ve captured a few bears, I am looking forward this summer to going to Alaska to see the Brown Bears in Lake Clark National Park to hopefully have a more in depth encounter. I also would love to capture more wildlife young and to to return to Kenya or go on another safari now with my digital camera and experience.
Dave Nevue – Do you travel?
Belinda Greb – Yes, whenever I can, but my budget is limited so lately it’s been mainly domestic, usually to national parks or national wildlife refuges.
Dave Nevue – What equipment do you use?
Belinda Greb – I have a Canon 5D Mark III and 24-70mm lens for landscapes and a Canon 7D Mark II and 100-400mm lens for telephoto.
Dave Nevue – Who are some of your favorite photographers?
Belinda Greb – I used to love looking at my Dad’s National Geographics. I liked Joe McDonald’s work, and I love seeing Art Wolfe’s work too. I also have works of fellow photographers from online sites that I’m always eager to see, like Jamie Pham and Jonathan Nguyen.
Dave Nevue – How do you find inspiration?
Belinda Greb – I look around me and I see so much beauty in the natural world. Still sometimes, I do have periods where I need to shake myself up, so I will go out to explore a new place. One of the reasons I love traveling is that often that a new place offers different flora, different birds, a different terrain, color palette or lighting. My local area is very green, lots of trees, low light nine months of the year, so I get very excited to shoot in different conditions.
Dave Nevue – What message would you like to get across with your Photographs?
Belinda Greb – For me, this is very important. I want us, as humans, to have a greater respect, understanding and love for the natural world: environment and animals. We need to understand that animals have consciousness, feeling, and relationships just as we do. We need to stop looking at them as if they are on this earth just for our dinner or our clothes, etc. I don’t think we can just shame people into not wearing fur or not thinking about where their food comes from. Instead, I think they need to love animals or at least see them as beyond accessories to their lives, before they can truly start changing their attitudes. I want my photography to help them see each animal as a living, feeling being and each natural place as a sacred place full of life.
Dave Nevue – Do you sell your prints? If so when did you first start selling and where can people purchase your work?
Belinda Greb – Yes
I started out on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/RadianceCardsPhotos six years ago, and I am also on
Fine Art America – http://belindagrebphotography.com/,
Society6 – https://society6.com/belindagreb,
Amazon Handmade – https://www.amazon.com/handmade/Belinda-Greb-Photography,
Photo4Me in UK – http://www.photo4me.com/profile/12313/all/canvas-prints?sortby=popular.
Dave Nevue – What social media sites can people follow you on?
Belinda Greb – Twitter – https://twitter.com/BelindaGreb
Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.com/bradiant/
Dave Nevue – Do you enjoy the business side of being a photographer?
Belinda Greb – Ha, as I said before, I’m an introvert, so no, not so much. I’ve come to like Twitter much more than I though I would, but overall this has been the biggest challenge for me. It can be very tedious, and I’m much happier when I’m either out shooting or post processing.
Dave Nevue – What advice could you share with young photographers and artists trying
to enhance their craft and find their unique style?
Belinda Greb – Take note of what you like in other people’s work and learn from others, but don’t be afraid to experiment and don’t be afraid to step away from the trends. The more you practice, the better you will be and you will start to know what resonates with you. Don’t let the “rules” box you in.
Dave Nevue – What advice could you share with artists just learning how to sell their art either online or offline?
Belinda Greb – Don’t think that just because you upload your work online that it’s suddenly going to go viral. Unfortunately, there’s an unbelievable amount of people hoping for that same thing. In other words, don’t quit your day job. Some people are naturals at promoting themselves – more power to them. I’m not one of them, so I’m not the best person to offer advice on this. I do think that patience and perseverance are a must. Relevant keywords are a must. Social media is a must if you want people to view your work. Most importantly, keep the focus on improving as a photographer/artist and keeping your passion alive.
Thank you so much for joining me today Belinda. I look forward to
seeing more of your work in the near future.
Belinda Greb – Thank you, Dave!
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