Photographer of the week: Andiyan Lufti

Like many other macro photographers, Andiyan Lufti is specialized towards nature and animals. What sets him apart from the rest however, is his tendency for being at the right place at the right time. Not only are his photographs masterfully composed, but he also manages to show us animals in the most intriguing situations. You will find more photos in the end of the article.


Briefly tell us about yourself, your hobbies and other jobs.

My name is Andiyan Lutfi, many of my friends call me “AL”.  I live in Cibinong Village, about 80 km from the downtown core of Jakarta City.  My village is surrounded by a landscape full of trees and reeds and is a perfect habitat for the many bugs who live there. This wonderful natural environment inspires me a lot to pursue my photographic hobby.

How has your history and life experiences affected your photography?

My interest in macro photography started in early 2008, when I joined a photography community named Jakarta Photo Club which taught me many valuable lessons. My friends in that club were really supportive and provided sharp critics on my work so I could learn and correct my mistakes.

Furthermore, the works of Martha and Magdalena Wasiczek, published in 1X, were really inspiring for me and gave me a better understanding regarding macro which is not necessarily about magnification and sharpness but also about beauty and story.

What first attracted you to photography?

I like many type of arts, the art of painting, the art of sculpture and the art of carved work.  I can stare at a painting for quite a long time and enjoy it. Since photography is also an art,  I loved it immediately at the first glance.

Describe your overall photographic vision.

A macro photo does not only depict a photo with a sharp and magnified subject, but also needs to be beautiful and storytelling.  A macro photo must contain a message for the viewers.

Why are you so drawn to macro photography?

I live in an environment with a large variety of bugs.  This large subject matter close to home allowed me to pursue my photography without traveling expenses, or paying for models, or leaving my family for several days, only to get photos. Taking photo of bugs is an activity that I can do on a daily basis with no expenses. Eventually I fell in love with it.

What is more important to you, the story behind an image or the technical perfection

Capturing a moment (story) is the most essential aspect for macro photography. The work would be perfect if it is supported by technical perfection.

What generally is your relationship to your subject matter beyond being an observer?

My relationship with my subject can be described as living in human community. So, instead of only being an observer, I treat them with mutual respect the same way I treat my friends. 

What is your most important advice for a beginner in macro photography and how do you get started?

To start macro shooting, one cannot only rely on the technical aspects but the photographer also needs to have the right attitude, a meticulous behavior, patience and steadiness to get an excellent photo. Don’t easily feel discouraged or too quickly satisfied.

Are there any specific directions that you would like to take your photography in the future or any specific goals that you wish to achieve?

Photography is only a hobby for me, not what I do for living. When I earn some money from photography, I consider it as bonus in my life from God. I don’t have a goal in this field, I just want to keep working on it and will be grateful if my work eventually can inspire others.

Describe your favorite photograph taken by you and why it is special to you?

All of my ant photos are my favorites. I became well known to others because of those photos and that gave me more passion in the early stages of my work.


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