Last Updated on 05/02/2022 by Mark Beckenbach
We’re incredibly excited to bring you this week’s episode of Inside the Photographer’s Mind. London-based portrait photographer Anna Neubauer joins us to talk about her recent success at the Sony World Photography Awards. She’ll also share her journey into photography, why she photographs children, and a current documentary project she’s developing. Let’s take a look.
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Why Anna Neubauer?
We always aim to invite photographers to the podcast with good stories to tell. Anna Neubauer’s success at the Sony World Photography Awards is certainly an example of that. However, beyond the story, is the most important factor when choosing a guest: the photos. When browsing the internet, looking for fresh photography to share, I felt an instant connection to the work created by Neubauer. While viewing her work, I saw an image of a little girl with down syndrome. What struck me most wasn’t her condition but the confidence she displayed in her portrait. On further investigation, I learned that Neubauer had several images of people with some form of health condition. The consistency was that her subjects all looked like they belonged in front of the camera.
A person’s health condition often takes center stage when they’re having their portrait taken, but with Neubauer’s work, the condition almost fell into the background. She wasn’t photographing a human with–she was photographing a human, period. I found that to be beautiful, and it was the catalyst for speaking with her on Inside the Photographer’s Mind. I’m thrilled she accepted the invitation.
Meeting Anna Neubauer
Speaking with Neubauer was a pleasure. She has a gentle character and takes time to formulate her answers to my off-the-cuff questions. Once an extrovert, she now lives her life in a more introverted way, but that doesn’t stop her from pushing boundaries with her photographic practice. She just returned to London after a solo trip to Africa. She went to Tanzania to develop a documentary project that looks at what home means to a person with a disability, especially in developing countries. In the podcast, she explains the experience, how the local people received her, and what she has planned for the rest of the project.
Her Path Into Photography
Born in Austria, Anna Neubauer got her break when an Austrian agency booked her for a portrait shoot. Although she was initially elated by the news, sadly, her experience was nothing but negative. “Crop out the model’s face. They’re ugly,” she was told by the client. New to the industry, she followed the instructions they gave her. However, after reflecting, she asked herself, “Who am I? And who are they?” From that point, she promised she would never work for such an agency again and would never follow such cruel instructions.
Shortly after her experience, Neubauer moved to London, a city famed for diversity and inclusivity. From there, she began to shape her photographic voice and developed her portfolio. What’s evident is her passion for working with children, and she’s extremely talented at it. On the podcast, I asked Neubauer what it was like photographing children and why she enjoyed it so much. “There’s something really freeing about working with kids,” she told me. She continues to explain that it helps her tap into her inner child and how much she gets along with children on a shoot. Most importantly, she enjoys the process, telling me, “it’s always fun.” You can listen to more about how she works with children by hitting play on the podcast.
On the Sony World Photography Awards
Anna Neubauer almost didn’t submit her work to the Sony World Photography Awards. However, with only 24 hours left before the deadline, she received an email reminding her to submit her photography. She did, and it’s a good thing; she eventually finished third place in the portrait category. In this episode of Inside the Photographer’s Mind, Neubauer explains what it feels like to be recognized by such a prestigious award. She also shares the opportunities that came with her success and what it did for her overall confidence.
It brought a close to a fantastic 30 minutes of photography conversation. Neubauer is a rising star in the industry and we’re sure her success will continue; her work and storytelling will only improve. So enjoy the podcast, connect with her, and show your support. She’s a credit to the photo industry and a name worth keeping in mind. Enjoy the show.
You can learn more about Anna by visiting her website and Instagram.
All images by Anna Neubauer. Used with permission.