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5 Minutes With Fashion Photographer Elvina Farkas

The talented judge of Photo Face Off S3 shares her top photography tips

Photo: History Asia 


Self-taught fashion and portraiture photographer Elvina Farkas is one of the judges.

Think you can take a mean photo? And we don’t mean an Instagram selfie.

If you’re keen to improve your photography skills, here’s the reality show to watch — Photo Face-Off Season 3.

Back with a fresh format and a brand new bunch of eager amateur contestants,  the show will feature a whirlwind tour around some of the region’s most exotic locales, as contestants battle it out for the single spot in the season’s Grand Finale in Vietnam.

Hosted by Asia’s Kelly Latimer and presented by Canon PhotoMarathon, the five one-hour episodes will be centered around 15 photo challenges designed to test even the most ardent snapper.

Meanwhile, we caught self-taught fashion and portraiture photographer Elvina Farkas (who’s also one of the judges), to share her shooting tips:

What are your top five photography tips?

Use your light, get creative with your angles, feel comfortable directing your subjects (or friends), take moments to review your images and enjoy the process!

How did you use your experience as a seasoned photographer to guide the contestants on the show?

Everything we put the contestants through is exactly what we deal with in our line of work.

Problem solving, using your surroundings and thinking outside of the box are certainly things that need to come naturally for any photographer, so I was happy to pass on whatever knowledge might help  the contestants within these areas.

Of course, I can’t interfere too much with them during the challenges, but I thoroughly enjoyed observing them and comparing it to how I might have done certain things the same or differently.

What was it like working with the participants and your co-judge, Justin Mott? Did you pick up any tricks from them and what were they?

Justin has this ability to put everyone at ease with his natural charm and humour, so I was up against
a lot when trying to make my own lasting impression. I will always be grateful to Kelly and Justin to
walking me through the ropes and helping me to realise my new position in front of the camera!

This season, I focused a lot more on the technical aspects of the job, which thankfully is my comfort zone, particularly because of the fantastic range of Canon cameras accessed during the show (I have been a loyal Canon shooter since the beginning of my career).

What I learnt from these kids, is how subjective a concept or brief can be, and it always pays to think creatively. Kelly and I call them ‘the kids’ as we definitely felt a lot like the mother hens, sharing their ups and downs and feeling so proud of them after each successful challenge!

As a professional photographer, what do you look for in a photo?

There are definitely key elements when it comes to judging an image, and we make no exceptions
during the show to highlight these points.

Ideally we look for colour, composition, creativity and whether or not the photo fulfills the brief of the challenge, but sometimes, if an image has a lot of character or soul, the technical points can be outweighed in judging.

As my role of resident judge, I throw in a lot of tough love; in the end, my goal is to help these guys up their game for when it comes time to participate in the finale.

Catch Photo Face-Off Season 3 on HISTORY (StarHub TV Ch. 401), Thursdays at 9pm.