Hi Sebastian. First of all, can you introduce yourself, who you are, where you come from and where you currently live? A bit about your personal background.
My name is Sebastian Burziwal and I come from and live in Vienna. After a few years as a project manager in a marketing agency, I took the risk and started my own business as a photographer.
What you do for a living? And how does it relate to your photography?
Since this year I have been officially self-employed as a photographer.
How did you start your career as a photographer? How has your personal style developed over the years?
I started to photograph landscapes in a very classic way, with my mobile phone. At some point, I discovered Instagram and started posting my photos there. When I ran out of classic landscape and travel photos one day, I started to photograph our beautiful city (Vienna). Since these photos went down really well on Instagram, I stayed with them. Today it is a mixture of travel, landscape and city photography.
What inspires you and why?
Sometimes a short walk through Vienna’s city centre is enough to provide the necessary inspiration. Sometimes it is also conversations with other creative people or the exchange of ideas or possible photo projects that lead to the most exciting results.
Your pictures show beautiful, atmospheric compositions, especially from the urban environment – how did you develop this style?
Countless hours of YouTube videos and LightRoom. Many people often ask for presets and other tricks for “nicer” photos. The problem is, it doesn’t actually make the photos any better. Develop your own style, both in terms of photos and editing.
As it can be seen on your feed, you like to be out and about to discover the city and nature – are your photos planned? Do you work in a certain setup or are the photos more spontaneous?
That depends – it’s the mix that makes it! I often take a spontaneous walk through the city with my camera, and of course, I’m happy when the photos come out. But it doesn’t always work! Conversely, the most fantastic shots can also come from spontaneous trips. But I also keep a list of ideas/places/motifs that I would like to photograph or try. I always add something when I have a new idea or I try to implement as much of it as possible.
What does your perfect day of shooting look like?
Ideally, it starts with an adventure at sunrise and ends after sunset with a good glass of wine in front of the PC.
Does the place you come from or where you currently live has a big influence on the pictures you take? If so, to what extent?
Yes, Vienna definitely has a big influence on my photos. Not only because it is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, but also because even for me, who has lived in Vienna for 28 years, there is always something new to discover.
What are your personal positive discoveries, experiences and developments that you made during the pandemic?
Above all, that you can get creative with the simplest means and from home! Especially in times like these, it is important to realise that creativity begins in the mind.
What do you think of the IG community you have built? Do you exchange ideas with other IGers or do you sometimes meet? Have there been any special collaborations?
I am super grateful for the community that follows my work and always likes my new pictures. The positive feedback is one of the greatest motivational factors of all. I know it is anything but self-evident and I am really grateful for it. I meet regularly with other Instagrammers for photo walks, etc. A number of collaborations have already arisen, among others with Vienna Tourism, Austria Advertising and many others.
How and why did you start using Instagram as a platform for presenting your photography?
Fun fact: I started Instagram one evening in Madeira (Portuguese island) when a colleague explained to me the importance of hashtags on Instagram. I have been uploading photos regularly since 2015.
Do you have a favourite photo that you took and what is the story behind it?
One of my favourite photo series was taken on an autumn day in October last year. It had rained the night before, so the air was still very humid and every single ray of sunshine was visible as it fell through the leaves of the trees.
Do you still send postcards yourself?
In fact, I still send postcards because there are a few people in my family who are incredibly happy about it every time.
Did you know PICKMOTION before our cooperation? And if so, from where?
To be honest, I didn’t know PICKMOTION yet, but in September last year, I was there for your #pckwalk in the Museumsquartier. And now that I pay special attention, I suddenly see the cards and magnets everywhere.
Can you name three of your favourite IG accounts?
One of the accounts I like the most is definitely @A_l_x_ender . His street shots and cinematic tones are incredibly good. I also like Norbert’s ( @spoti ) work very much. I was also inspired by him one or the other time when it comes to the choice of motif or the editing style. I also like the work of Anskar & Lea extremely well ( @anskar.lenzen / @lea.milde ). The two combine the topics of sustainability / nature conservation & photography in a very impressive way. The photos that result from it are unique and often breathtaking.