Instagram is all about selfies, sunsets, breakfast and pets, Instagram filter hell and wellness heaven. The prejudices stick. But anyone who looks a little further will find Instagrammers, that found their way to photography via the app and its social network. On a regular basis, we talk to Instagrammers.
Efi Logginou is an actress from Greece who has been living in Berlin for years. In the vein of photographers like Saul Leiter, she shares her impressions from the streets of Berlin on Instagram under the moniker @efi_o.
Since when does photography play an important role in your life? Do you remember which was the first photo you took?
It started around four years ago, but I always had an interest in photography. I used to buy magazines and search online for photographers whose work I admired. My first photo was a black and white photo shot with film of my two teenage friends on swings.
Has anything changed when it comes to your use of photography or your fascination for the medium through Instagram?
Instagram lead me to start to do photography more constantly. Photography became my everyday habit and passion. It opened another horizon for me to see the world.
What is the function of photography for you?
To me photography is a way to communicate. It can be a common language between people. With the camera I can create a sort of relationship with my subjects. In my photographs I try to express that relationship.
What is the relationship between photography and Instagram?
Instagram for me is a tool for photography.
What do you look for when you take a photo?
I am looking for brief moments that can tell a whole life’s story. And when I find them in the scenes of everyday life, in the rhythms of the city, I want to capture them.
Do you think of yourself as a photographer, as an artist?
I am an actress who observes the world.
Whose photographs do you wish you’d take?
I believe deeply that all of us are unique. So I prefer to tell you, which photographs I admire the most. Diane Arbus is definitely my favorite. I adore her photos. She has a way to show people without being judgmental. Also she said something, I couldn’t have said better: „A photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you the less you know.“
Do you go on extended photo walks through Berlin or when you are traveling?Photography is an everyday experience for me. I go out in Berlin regularly and when I have the possibility to travel, I also take photos.
You seem to work on various projects like #shareyourbusstory, #drive_in_scenes, #windowsofthoughts? Is there something that connects all those sets?
The thing that connects all those things is the glass. And also traveling by bus, by car, or to be on a thought journey.
You observe people with your camera and very often there’s a window between you and the person you photograph. Why? To be at a safe distance?
The windows remind me of my beloved cinema. They create a quietness and act as a transparent seperator, that spurs my fantasy and it makes me a discreet observer. Most of us keep a safe distance, even to our closest relationships. The windows just makes that more visible.
You sometimes photograph kids and they seem to be in a dreamy state of mind or seem to be thinking about something. Do you often revisit childhood memories?
I believe that the required element for someone to be an actor, is to keep his childishness. If you ask me, yes, when I photograph a child, it is my personal travel to the past, but also to the future.
Would you mind sharing a childhood fantasy with us?
As a child I was always sleeping without a night light and I never had fantasy friends, but I always had the wish to fly. I wanted to know the world from above. I also remember intensely, that I wanted to have an ice-cream machine in my bedroom.
Your work reminds us of Saul Leiter. The light, the reflections and the windows. Who influences your photography?
It is an honor to hear that. Because I really admire the work of Saul Leiter. For me, he is one of the best photographers in history. But I rediscovered him from a comment of an Instagramer under a photo of mine. That is actually how I started to study his work. Cinema has a great influence on my photography.
Follow @efi_o on Instagram here.