April 19, 2016 by Laura Gomez


Mustafa Seven was born in Sivas, Turkey in 1974. He started his photojournalism career in Sabah Newspaper Magazine Group and continued with Hürriyet Magazine Group, Gazete Pazar and Milliyet before becoming the photography editor of Ak?am Newspaper. Afterwards Seven directed his attention and works to street photography which he defines as “witnessing life”.

Mustafa Seven has been awarded at many national and international photography contests; he took part in numerous exhibitions and festivals, holding a personal exhibition called “Tek” in 2013. Seven, who has presented his work through various mediums throughout his career, has been using Intagram as an active channel in the recent years. He sees this medium as a personal portfolio space and he is one of the Turkish photographers who has reached the top number of followers.

Mustafa Seven also makes time for educational activities; he holds workshops on street photography and works on projects together with universities and other educational institutions.

He has two books published by ?nk?lap Bookstore; the first is “Instagram” which is a collection of Istanbul photographs shared on Instagram, the second is “Street Photography” which he has written as a guide for those beginning to work in this specific field of photography.

Mustafa Seven continues to work as a freelance photojournalist and to produce photographs that communicate the street and document the era he lives in with private national and international projects…

Photo Interview:

Name: Mustafa Seven
Age: 41
Birthday: 22.10.1975
College: Hacettepe Fine Arts

Colour: Black
Book: Yasar Kemal / ?nce Memed
Movie: Sergio Leone / The good The Bad The Ugly
Food: Turkish Kebab
Quote: Robert Capa / If your pictures aren’t good enough, you aren’t close enough.

For how long have been in photography? How did you start?
I’ve been working as a professional for 20 years. I started photography during my student years with a Zenit camera, which I got by chance.

How would you define yourself as an artist?
I don’t define myself as an artist but a photojournalist.

Where do you find inspiration?
Only thing I do is, walking on the streets and documenting the necessary things.

Is Brainstorming not the only creative method use to create new concepts?
In my working discipline, generally brainstorm isn’t a method I use often. Generally I discuss with people whom I trust their opinions.

Please could you tell us about photography and digital technology?
As a photographer who also worked on Analog Era, in my opinion both has pros and cons. If we regard phototography as a way of storytelling, I find digital technologies democratic, since it destroys the monopoly of professionals.

What type of camera do you use most?
I choose my cameras regarding the field I work. Sometimes DSLR, sometimes a mirrorless and sometimes a mobile camera.

What is your favorite lens?
35 mm f 1.4.

What has been your most memorable assignment and why?
Working as a photojournalist after the Gölcük earthquake in 1999 is my most memorable assignment.

What are your favourite three images you have shot recently?

I was in Tehran, Iran for autograph session of my latest book. I can’t choose three images, but all the photos in the city were special to me.

How important is an awesome website for your business?
For me a website is the platform I exhibit my works. It’s important to have a functional and aestheticly powerful website.

What’s the most important quality a photographer needs to have?
The one has to be a good observer, patient, curious. And If we’re talking about street photography, being able to communicate with people from different backgrounds, races, genders, ages is vital.

Which of your projects has given you the most satisfaction?
I can’t say just one project, since it’s not my way to produce a work doesn’t satisfy me. All the projects I’ve been involved satisfied me so far.

List of your clients?

I’ve had collaborations with numerous national and international brands like Samsung, Volvo, Sony, Turkish Airlines etc.

Who are the photographer’s you admire the most?
Henrie Cartier Bresson, Ara Güler, Ansel Adams, Robert Capa, Christopher Morris, Sebastian Salgado…

What about architects and designers?
Couple of weeks ago I was in Baku, Azerbaijan and I had to chance to visit “Haydar Aliyev Cultural Center” of Zaha Hadid. I loved her way of creating forms. Too sad that she passed away that early.