Love Thy Neighbour

Johan Nieuwenburg is a 24-year-old photographer born in The Hague, the Netherlands. Johan moved to South America as a teenager, first to Barranquilla, Colombia, where he finished school, and now he’s based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he studies Cinema at ‘Universidad del Cine‘.

How did the idea for the series come about?

Actually I was shooting another set with Rochi at the time, more trashy in style using flashes etc … And then we got this idea to use the natural light coming in through a window in another room that was really soft. It was a grey day but it was a great lighting, so yeah that was that, nothing special.

How did your shoot with Rochi go?

It was nice, she had a cool attitude. That is the most important thing to make a set work for me, more important than beauty or experience.

Can we photograph the female body differently in a more powerful way?

I guess it’s always possible to get more out of it, sometimes I see myself more as an advertiser than a photographer. I say this because I like to sell an attitude in my photographs, I really want people to feel free and irreverent when checking my pictures, this set might not capture that feeling completely, but I seek that power in body language and again attitude.

What inspires you?

I’m really inspired by music with years of listening to punk-rock and hip-hop. I was never really into studying or looking at art, but it was always close in one way or another. Other big influence is cinema of course, directors such as Paul Thomas Anderson, the Coen brothers, Tarantino, or Stanley Kubrick really made me love composition and storytelling. As for photographers, I had first started shooting before I actually knew the big photographers. I like them now, but the real influence were the young people just as me on Flickr/Instagram/Tumblr.

How would you define beauty?


Film or digital?

Film forever. I hate digital.

What makes you happy?

Freedom to do whatever you feel like.

What’s next for you?

Well I have nothing planned, I would love to keep on shooting and to live off this business, but we will see.