In August we had the pleasure to travel in the Delta together with the photographer Andrei Baciu, www.andreibaciu.ro. We asked Andrei to show the hidden Delta to a wider audience.
When we came back we talked about his travel impressions.
After you came back from the Delta, which is the image that stayed with you the most? What struck a chord with you or intrigued you in that place?
In photography there is an expression which describes the moment that makes you push the camera trigger: “the flame of knowledge”. The normal, unpoetical time flow stops and all the beings, objects and elements which are in front of the lens align with the photographer’s emotion in an extraordinary manner. And this is how triggering the camera becomes an extension of this very intense emotion. Well, for me in the Delta there were several “flames” that were ignited. One of the most powerful was the one on the morning when we were approaching the Sacalin Island. Among the numerous bird species, I spotted some extraordinarily beautiful horses grazing in the gentle sunrise light. As if this wasn’t enough, a flock of white birds flew behind them while a seagull was passing in the foreground towards me – “click!”.
From a technical point of view, which was the greatest challenge of shooting in the Delta?
First, it’s about the type of focus I had to use, the continuous one, which is much more difficult than the one for static subjects. Birds move very fast and therefore, in addition to having to think quickly about composition, there is always the risk of pictures being out of focus, which leads to the failure of the photograph itself.
A second challenge was that, despite the continuous rocking back and forth of the boat, I had to take care of … the horizon line being straight. From one point on, I realised that sometimes this was impossible. So I decided to do everything I can on the spot, compose more widely, and edit the pictures at home.
If you were to go back to the Delta to take more photographs, which subjects would interest you?
I couldn’t take too many photos of the locals, especially as I was there during peak tourist season, and the people were extremely busy. Also, the encounter with Delta’s animals (pelicans, cormorants, wild horses, dolphins -) moved me deeply. Surely, I would love to take pictures of them again!
You think there is no boundary between photography and lyricism. In what place or image did you discover the Delta’s poetry?
I have seen only a relatively small part of it, but I think I can say that, yes, I have been brushed by the wing of the Delta’s poetry. A photo I made in such a state is the one I first spoke about when I was near the Sacalin Island. Another image depicts two fishermen in a boat floating on a blue Danube against the backdrop of an even bluer horizon. They are accompanied by birds that reflect on the water like a mirage, as a careful eye can see. It was the last evening I spent in the Delta, and it seemed to me that, for a few moments, there, exactly where the Danube flowed into the Black Sea, the sky itself descended onto the waters, among the people.