Featuring a Marvelous Fellow Photographer! Niki Strbian of Finland-- How Cool!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Hey folks! I promise that baby belly pic is coming... but I was really excited to get to introduce you to a photographer friend of mine when the opportunity came up, so today's post is going to be an interview, and that belly pic will come tomorrow. Seriously, this time. :)


So I am blessed to have been allowed to get to know quite a few incredible photographers online, through our mutual passion for our work, and our constant efforts to get better and teach each other. Because of that, a group of us have expressed interest in  interviewing each other and "bragging" on the talents of our peers. It's fun for US, and kinda cool to talk about the photographic work that is going on all over the world. I mean, my first photographer interview here is a gal from FINLAND! Super cool! 

Anyway, without further ado, if you get a minute, stick around and meet Niki. 
Her studio name, officially, is Niki Strbian Valokuvaus. ("Valokuvaus" translates to photography in Finnish. Betcha didn't know that!)

She shoots out of Finland, and because of that, her vision is particularly unique to me, and therefore super inspiring. I swear the light up there is totally different from St. Louis light. Ahh!

She shared one of her current favorite images for this little interview:
 But if you're anything like me, that little taste is NOT gonna do it for you. If you want to see the full scope of her work, sneak over to her website,, and her blog,, and prepare to ooh and ahh. Seriously, pay attention to the light she gets!

Niki was kind enough to answer a few questions about her work and her passions. It was incredibly fun to know more about her on my end... I think we'd be grand friends in real life (I mean, did you SEE her self-portrait? SO fun!)

Ten Questions With Niki Strbian

About your chosen image, shown above…
1) Why do you love this image?

Because it was created in an instant, because it tells about my love for hats and accessories and because it shows how photography enriched my life in so many ways. Not only I get to meet so many great people, not only families share their love for each other in front of me (even in such reserved country as Finland). On top of that photography taught me that there is nothing like bad weather. I used to be a sunshine junkie, but now I know that every minute of every day, independent of the weather conditions, there is something worth capturing out there. So I better get my butt out and capture it.

2) What were your settings with this image?
ISO 800, f/2,2, 1/2500 shot with 50/1.4

About photography…
3) What do you love about photography?

Everything. Anything. Connection with my clients. The excitement of finding locations. Seeing the light everywhere. Meeting the coolest people. Being free. Rocking 7 days old newborn babies in my arms. Making people happy. Creating memories that will last generations. Having a job that makes sense even for 5 year olds.

[Amen, Niki.... Just--- AMEN. I love the way you worded that!]

4) What type of photography do you specialize in and why?
I specialize in newborn and children photography and in boudoir photography. Photographing a newborn is every time such a special experience. They are so tender and fragile and delicate, but at the same time strong. I love children, I love playing with them and children usually love me. I could not photograph landscape because I would be utterly bored. Children are everywhere, they don't stop to pose, so you don't have half hour to think about the perfect shot. It's not like photographing Angelina Jolie where you tell her to sit down and be beautiful and she does. With children you have a split of a second if you are lucky. And I love the excitement of it. Maybe that's why I enjoy boudoir as the total opposite kind of portrait photography. I enjoy making every woman feel beautiful and bringing out the lioness in her.

5) What are your favorite hobbies and pastimes?
Reading and actively spending time with my family. Reading is a dangerous activity, when I take a book into my hands, I fall through her pages into the story and I only emerge at the end of it. Hungry, thirsty and sleep deprived, and realize that I have a family too. So I only can afford reading once in a while. but with my family we go to school for circus artists, we ski in winter and swim and trek in summer.

[Okay. I need to know more about this school for circus artists. That completely captures my imagination!! And I am a book devourer, too!]

6) Who or what inspires you?

I am inspired by my clients' homes, hobbies and life styles. I am inspired a lot by fairy tales and movies and very much by my fellow photographers.

7) Who are some of your favorite singers/bands?
Luis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald

[Squee! Me too!! Nice!]

8) What is your favorite movie of all time?
This is a tough question. We watch every year before Xmas Love Actually, but I adore Disney movies and The Flight Across the Cuckoo Nest. And a handful of Czech movies and Slovak movies too. I don't really have a favorite movie, but I do like Al Pacino movies and Jack Nicholson's earlier movies. And Meryl Streep in just about anything.

9) What would your ideal day be like?
photoshoot with a large fun family in their castle and on their vineyard and end up with a great dinner (four or five course, black truffle pasta and full bodied wine) with all the people I love. So it would be a laaaaaarge company. Oh and a midnight walk with my husband along a secluded beach. And maybe a drawing from my kids portraying our family.

[Awesome! My answer to that question involves Italy, too. Meetcha there someday??]

10) If you weren't a photographer, what other profession would you like to pursue?
I would not want to be anything else than a photographer. This is my dream that I never knew I had.


Such a neat photographer, that Niki.
Seriously, if you haven't popped over to her blog yet, now's the time. Check out my FAVORITE most recent shoot of hers here: Malena Has A Birthday by Niki Strbian... And if you are on Facebook, you can find her here: Niki Strbian Facebook Fan Page.

I got to answer these same questions, so when my interview gets posted on my friend's blog, I'll let y'all know where you can find it. Deal?
Anyhoo... Now I have the itch to travel to Finland. Anyone else?


  1. I'll go to Finland with you! Seriously, I have had a fascination with Scandinavia in general for years now... The UK is still my top pick, but anywhere in Scandinavia ranks pretty close up there, along with Spain and Luxembourg...
    Just let me know when you go! :)

  2. OMG! I love Nikki's work! Great post!

  3. Niki is so creative! THanks for the interview, Emily!

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  5. Adorable image! Love Niki's work!


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