Photographer Highlight: Meet Danni in Paris

Dive into our blog to get to know Danni! Discover more about her unique perspective and be amazed by the magical memories she captures.

Couple having a romantic moment in front of Eiffel Tower in Paris

✏️ Name: Danica Jurisic
📍 Location: Paris
📸 Equipment: Canon EOS 5D Mark 4 with lenses Sigma 50 mm 2.8, Canon 24 - 105 mm 2.8, Canon 17 - 45 mm 4, Canon EF 70 - 200 2.8.

How would you describe your personal photography style?

I like to take this kind of almost candid documentary style of pictures and mix it up with Parisian aesthetics. So there's a little bit of nostalgia, that is, a little bit of old Paris. I love those paved sidewalks and streets, and I love the architecture. I prefer to capture the moment as it is, not to make it look staged. The photos that actually show people enjoying themselves might not be the best in terms of composition. There are a bunch of rules that we always have to follow but I prefer to capture the moment.

Every person that comes to my photoshoot brings something of their own. There's something special, and it is that kind of interaction. That process of adapting to each other is a beautiful interaction that can be really productive. It can be so creative and encouraging. I learn something else with every session, and I develop or integrate something new into my style. That's how it works.

I've been living in Paris for a very long time, and I think I've seen almost every film that was ever made about Paris. I love the period of Nouvelle Vague, and I love the entire story and charm that it has. The movie 'Midnight in Paris', for me is like a magnet. Wherever you go, you have these stories from the past, popping out from each corner. This building was from this period, and there's a story linked to it. This bridge is from that, so there's a lot of art history tangled in the architecture, tangled into the city.

Where do you find your creative inspiration?

Paris has an amazing history, and I love the visual side of Paris. But then again, you have an enormous flow of people. And the population in Paris is so diverse. You can hear about 20 different languages on a daily basis.

And you have so many different cultures mixing that you have so much influence from everywhere in the world. So you always get some sort of push forward. You always get something just by being there because I feel like it's almost like a centre of the world, not literally, but maybe culturally. A lot is going on that inspires you always.

I think Paris is where I recharge myself a little. I think I wouldn't be as productive or as motivated if I wasn't living in Paris.

Danni Jurisic: Shaping Paris through the Lens
Create a day filled with joy and unforgettable moments through a professional photoshoot! Book your spot on now and let Danica capture your best memories in high quality!

What type of clients do you enjoy working with the most?

The ones that are just open-minded. They don't have to be prepared or have to have any kind of knowledge about anything at all. I would just like them to be present in a moment and open-minded and willing to communicate with me. And that's it - then we have a blast!

I always believe that authenticity is the key to a good picture. Being present in the moment, being willing to just communicate verbally or non-verbally. That's it! That's what is needed to actually produce some good-quality photos. It is like a dialogue that doesn't even have to be verbal. I will try to find an association with emotion, feeling, or a pleasing pose. And if they're willing and they respond, then the photoshoot can only go really, really well!

Could you walk us through your typical process when working with a new client?

Definitely, so I like to apply some rules from the old-school way. I always say hello to everybody individually. I always shake hands if possible. I'm always on time, or at least I try to be. I ask them if they have any ideas about what they would like to do.

I ask them what type of photos they would like to have. You can't give everyone the same cues because sometimes, it's not who they are at all! So I always tell them, "Okay, I'm going to tell you how to position yourself. But if it doesn't feel comfortable, don't do it. Just try to be comfortable and try to get that energy and emotion you want in that picture. Try to go after whatever it is that you came here for and we're going to have a lovely time.".

I love those photoshoots by the Seine, around the bridges. Depending on the length of the shoot, I can do three, four or five different locations that are micro-locations within a certain area. We try to avoid other people, other photographers, and the crowd. I try to avoid whatever feels staged and aim for a natural look. I'm just trying to find somewhere they can be comfortable. Some people are more comfortable in the crowd, while others really need their personal space.

After we complete the session, I explain to them what happens next, when and how they'll receive their photo gallery. I warn them that they may receive an additional link containing photos they haven't purchased yet. However, it's entirely optional; there's no pressure.

I also ask them if they need directions or instructions on how to get to their next stop. I took quite a few of my clients to the bus station, I know Paris can be intimidating for some. It's good to have someone local on your side who can tell you where to go and what to do.

What is one piece of advice you would give to someone preparing for a photoshoot with you?

Just come as you are, be open-minded and try to enjoy yourself. That's the most important advice that I would give!

The second piece of advice, particularly for the ladies, that I find very important is: if you plan to wear heels for your photoshoot consider starting in flats. Paris isn't exactly kind to those wearing heels, so begin with flats and switch to heels later.

Especially in summer, it's absolutely essential to bring a bottle of water. Beyond that, it's mostly common sense. It's advisable to discuss whatever ideas you have in mind with your photographer before the actual shoot.

Photographers, we are very discreet. So it's a good thing to kind of give us a heads up. If you have any special requests or if there's a significant occasion, feel free to share.

I've done numerous photoshoots, including proposals or with toddlers as well as sessions with individuals facing certain challenges in their lives. And they found this photo session to be therapeutic in a way. They wanted to rediscover themselves, to find, to see themselves in a new light. It was very empowering for them, and equally fascinating for me to be a part of their transformative journey and witness its beauty.

I encountered individuals who are deeply romantic and captivated by the notion of romance in Paris—seeking that magic they've seen in films or read about in books. Paris is not really like that in real life, so I try to kind of give them that little piece of magic that they are after. It's just part of the job, but it adds to the overall experience, creating something truly beautiful.

What's your favourite photo spot in your city, and is there a hidden gem or tip about your city that you think visitors should definitely explore or know about?

During almost every photoshoot, I enjoy sharing bits and pieces of the history of the location where we're shooting. It doesn't have to be something as popular as the Eiffel Tower; there are many layers to the city. I believe it's important to comprehend and appreciate these layers to truly understand and utilise the space for the photoshoot.

One of my favourite spots near the Eiffel Tower is a small, secluded area right along the waterfront where the sun sets. From there, you can catch a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower. It's a very personal and private spot where I've done a few proposal shoots!

What do you most enjoy about shooting with Smiler?

I love the autonomy that I can organise myself, being able to organise my schedule, set the shooting times, and determine my rates gives me a lot of freedom. I like working on my own terms. It's very liberating in a way.

I like the encouragement and support we receive. I also have a very good relationship with Mathilde, our coordinator. We get a lot of support from the support team, some of whom I haven't even met personally. Whenever there's an issue, there's always a lot of a lot of understanding and support from their side.

I also like that we are building a community of photographers. So if I encounter a problem, like a malfunctioning camera card or if I'm running late for some reason, I can always reach out to my fellow photographers for help. And that is lovely! It makes me feel like a part of something bigger; I'm not alone, you know? Having these kind of people around me is incredibly important. It's an amazing experience. That's what I love the most.

Hear what Danni's client says

"Danica was amazing! Super accommodating and sweet. She makes you feel very relaxed. She captured my birthday photos flawlessly." - K. Bailey from United States

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