NP: Intimate, fleeting moments nestled within the everyday minutia. My photography reflects a personal belief in mindfulness and the present, the camera acts as conduit to try and capture what is both obvious and distant at the same time.
CH.89: Where do you draw your inspiration from?
NP: Mostly from other photographers although I try to branch out and look for inspiration beyond the medium I work within. It can come from films, sculptures and paintings – I’m a very visual person so I need to have that input to be motivated to create.
CH.89: Can you talk a little bit about what your creative thought process is like when starting a new project/ piece of artwork?
NP: It almost exclusively happens abruptly and without any preconceived notions. I just shoot when the mood strikes and it all feels right. I like to let it happen organically as I think the work that stems from this manner is more honest and sincere.
CH.89: Is there anything in particular that you would want people to take from your artwork?
NP: Art speaks to the viewer in it’s own way – so I distance myself from adding my own agenda to it. Once the photo is taken it’s up to the observer to take what they want from it.
CH.89: Can you talk a little bit about your lifestyle as an artist and what that is like?
NP: It’s up and down, terrifying but liberating and exciting. I love what I do but being an artist in this day and age can be a struggle, so I’m still finding a balance between what I can do as a creative and sustaining myself and my life. It’s all part of the process though, but most importantly photography gives me an endless amount of happiness in my life and that’s pivotal.
CH.89: When starting out an artistic task, do you think it is better to have a particular direction/set plan guiding your way? Or, is it better to act on impulse and go from there?
NP: My projects are often loose and unguided, so it’s only when I take a step back and get it ready for an exhibition or for a book that I start to thread it all together. I think it’s just what works personally for you – you find the edges of it all as you go along.
CH.89: What is one major lesson you’ve learned as an artist thus far?
NP: You have to put yourself out there. I spent the first few years quietly doing my own thing but you really have to take chances and get your work and yourself out into the world and really push for it. Good things happen by making this kind of leap, as daunting as it often appears.
CH.89: Do you regard personal style & taste to be of highest importance?
NP: Personal style is irrelevant but taste directly influences what you are curious about and that often spills over into your creativity directly. Taste has an authenticity to it, personal style can be bought.
CH.89: What do you consider to be the hardest thing about being an artist?
NP: I remember reading once that being an artist is like ‘having homework every day for the rest of your life’. It does feel like that, but not in a laborious way. It is always there, whether loud or not it’s this little voice telling you that you have something to do – something to create and when you’re not doing it that voice starts to get louder and louder. That can be hard to answer and it can be a cause of a lot of anxieties.
CH.89: What is one thing you love about being an artist?
NP: I actually adore the process. I shoot 35mm film and I love how you can’t see the results instantly, you have to wait. I love that there are good and bad mistakes – but that feeling of seeing what you shot in a delayed kind of way is something that I love. There’s a romance to the process from beginning to end.
CH.89: Is there anyone in particular, any artist’s that inspire you in any way?
NP: Probably my biggest photographic inspiration is Wolfgang Tillmans as his work speaks to me in a very personal way. Every time I pick up one of his books or see an image of his online I study it – he is a huge part of why I choose to take photos. I admire his gentle observations and the way he views the world through his lens – I’m forever beholden to his photography.
CH.89: What do you think of technology in terms of being a useful tool for artists today?
NP: It’s a tool, like any other artist has. You just need to learn how to use it to your strengths and most importantly the ability to step away from it. For example, Instagram as a platform has given me some incredible opportunities that I would not have gained previously – but it has also skewed my process and how I view my own work. I’m really trying to balance this out and not let the lure of producing work in an expedited way just to have it online.
CH.89: Do you think being an artist allows you to view the world differently from those who don’t follow creative paths?
NP: No, we are all creative – just some choose to do it in different ways.
CH.89: Do you enjoy traveling? If so, do you have a favorite city?
NP: Absolutely – I’ve been lucky enough to live in a few different countries and have always traveled as much as I can. I was in Hanoi last year and loved it, if not for the food alone but the vibrancy and personality of the place really was incredible. I think I could happily live on Bahn Mi for the rest of my life.
CH.89: Do you have a favorite author or book?
NP: There are too many to choose from so I’ll just say the last book I thoroughly enjoyed was ‘Housekeeping’ by Marilynne Robinson.
CH.89: Any future goals or plans for your artwork?
NP: I’m currently working on my first photo book which will be released later this year. I’m also looking to have my first solo photography exhibition in Paris where I have just recently relocated to.
CH.89: What does being an artist mean to you?
NP: To use my camera as a way to interpret and understand the world around me.
CH.89: What’s the last song you listened to?
NP: Clairo – North
CH.89: Any last words on the aesthetic of your artwork?
NP: A play between light, shadow and color.