EXCLUSIVE: Our Interview with Sílvia Dias

Photos courtesy of Sílvia Dias Sílvia Dias is a self-taught photographer based in Portugal. We loved the range of colors that she use in...

Photos courtesy of Sílvia Dias

Sílvia Dias is a self-taught photographer based in Portugal. We loved the range of colors that she use in her photo shoots that we couldn't say no to featuring her!

Read on for photos and our exclusive interview with Sílvia.

Hi Sílvia, let's get to know you a little better!
My name’s Sílvia Dias, I’m 25 years old and I’m from Oporto in Portugal. I’m a recent graduate student on Fine Arts, from ESAP University. Right now I’m still unemployed but my dream is to teach.

I’m passionate about everything in the world of arts. I’ve started with acrylic painting and developed my skills during my high-school years in that department. When I got in the University I learnt a lot of new stuff, apart from traditional art; that’s when photography came into my life.

I’m a self-taught photographer and I try to learn more and more each day. I research a lot, view a lot and I have to thank every amazing artist that loves to teach us and show us all the “back in the scenes” procedures! You’ll be amazed by how many great photographers and artists you’ll find online, willing to show their work and teach! So, to all of you out there, thank you!

What defines photography?
Photography to me is more than what meets the eye. I’m not a purist when it comes to that artistic method and I’m fully aware that to reach what I have in my mind I break with some rules and create others (that suits myself).

I often say that what I do with photography is what I’d do with acrylic painting, for example. There are many, many painters that would never mix acrylic with oil and other materials because it’s against the rules. Well, I would and I have done it. Many of my classmates have done that also and even some of my teachers, too. On the other hand, the basic rules must be there.

It’s just like when you’re building a house: the support must be there and has to be correct, otherwise you won’t be able to create without failing. What I mean is that my artistic education and imagination speaks louder when I create. I had a bad time placing on the paper what was going in my imagination and I used to get really frustrated about it, of course. I used to feel lost so it was a blessing when we were forced to use photography as a method for a class, back in 2009. It was when It all started! I can create whatever I want, however I’d like it to be and forever capture it in a photography forever. It’s amazing!

I don’t really speak about what lenses I use, what EXIF info I chose. I just want to show and please myself and who ends up seeing my work. Whenever someone tells me s/he liked my work, I get so happy! Of course I also receive not so positive comments but I don’t get sad about it because in the first place I want to please myself and tastes are personal; I can’t please everyone. Secondly I learn with them. I love receiving a good critique and ideas. We only learn by our mistakes.

What are the concepts of your work?
I can say that my concept it all about my imagination and my roots. I love fairy-tales, mystical worlds, eroticism, magic, ethereal and surrealistic atmospheres, colors, lots of colors and light! Once someone asked me if my work reflects my personality and I had to say “Yes, definitely”. I try to always tell a story in all (or almost) of my works, or, at least, create emotions on whoever’s viewing the photo. I had a professor that used to tell us all the time that “art is meant to create emotions within us” and I follow his advice religiously.

How long have you been taking photos for?
I’ve been taking photos since 2009. We had this “Multimedia” class and our teacher made us use photography to make the final project. I had never used a camera before and I was terrified. She gave us some tips about it, since she was a photographer herself. I asked my brother’s friend to lend me her camera and I’ve asked my brother’s help because he is a journalist and he had used that camera before and knew how to handle it. So I came up with the concept, did the photosession (and believe me I was still terrified), chose the photos and made the stop-motion video the teacher had asked us to do.

After that moment, photography became a blessing in my and a passion. Since one passion doesn’t come alone, I figured that I also loved to make videos, out of stop-motion photos or in movie, and that’s another thing that I like doing.

Where do you get your inspirations from?
Mostly from my childhood memories. All those fairy-tales and Disney movies (that I still love deeply) had made me who I am now. Also, I’m a huge fan of Final Fantasy (game) since I was 10, so it’s also include in my memories and present day. Nowadays I’m fascinated with all that’s artistic and I research a lot.

My university days helped me expand my vision and open new horizons. It was a great help! I also read a lot (mostly love stories or dramas) and I create my own world out of them. Cinema is also extremely important to me: stories come to life and I can see it all. I’m a visually-hungry person, if I can say that way.

Any upcoming projects or work we should look forward to?
Yes! I’m so thrilled about an upcoming project (will take place next week, after some couple of months on idle status). I’m finally going to do an ethereal photosession and put some ideas I’ve been gathering and writing down, in practice! I was so lucky because I’ve been thinking about this and all of a sudden a model, who I’ve worked with some months ago, messaged me telling that she had an idea for a photosession and while she was telling me all about it I said “That’s EXACLY what I’ve been dreaming about lately!”. It’s going to be a mix of a personal project within her own personal project and I’m very excited and nervous! I’m always really nervous before a photosession/shoot as it was my first one.

Finally, Who do you dream of collaborating with?
That’s so hard to answer! I’m a fan of oh so many artists! I love Tim Walker’s work. I’d be happy just to take a peek at the backstage. Annie Leibovitz, she’s so AMAZING. I’m in love with her “Disney” works.

There are so many I can’t even name. I think I admire everyone’s work, each one of them with their own style and meanings. Now, in a not so photographic world, there are other people I admire: Robert Downey Jr. (who I’d LOVE to meet and photograph!), Tim Burton, Salvador Dalí, Yoshitaka Amano, Nobuo Uematsu. They’re all part of my childhood and present memories and also a huge inspiration!

I really have this dream to succeed, even if only a little bit, so I can help my parents back. They’re the ones that are responsible for my artistic education. They’ve been giving me what they can and can’t so I can develop my skills and fulfill my dreams and I want the best for them. I do this, also, for them.

Check out her work on Flickr!

You Might Also Like


We love hearing from you!