In the high Arctic above 78° N, Svalbard archipelago, February 2022 (Photo by ©David Rouge)

In the high Arctic above 78° N, Svalbard archipelago, February 2022 (Photo by ©David Rouge)

Claudiu Falub is an award-winning street and travel photographer based in Zürich, Switzerland. Born in Romania in 1972 he left his home country in 1998 to pursue a scientific career abroad, first in the Netherlands and subsequently in Switzerland. For more than 30 years he has been experimenting with different media, including painting, graphic art, sculpture, and both analog and digital photography. Through his current photography, he seeks to create an emotional storytelling connection and capture the "soul" of the people and places he travels to.

Claudiu started to paint in 1990, while he was a first year Physics student, after he had read two of Irving Stone's biographical novels, "Lust for Life", about the life of Vincent van Gogh, and "The Agony and Ecstasy", about Michelangelo. To improve the drawing skills he inherited from his mother, he studied reproductions of Leondardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Caravaggio, El Greco and Rembrandt. He exhibited his drawings, paintings and sculptures in 1992 at Casa de Cultură in his town of birth Beclean and then in 1993 at Galeriile Filo in Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

A few years later Claudiu stopped his painting activities to concentrate on photography – "the painting with light". He was always fascinated how photography had the power to stop time... all that movement in a moment of silence. He began experimenting with his father’s vintage rangefinder photo camera, when he learned by himself about exposure, composition, natural lighting and depth of field. In the following few years he had been photographing landscapes mostly in color using single-lens reflex film cameras and 35 mm color slide films, but then he gradually shifted focus towards the black and white genre after studying the photographs of Ansel Adams. Eventually it was the social documentary black and white photographs of Eugene Smith and Sebastião Salgado that turned him back to the people he used to sketch in earlier times with ink or charcoal. With time, he became more and more fascinated by people, street life, and documentary photography, especially after coming across the work of Magnum photographers René Burri and Henri Cartier-Bresson. 

In 2001 Claudiu switched from the single-lens reflex autofocus cameras and the looking through the lens composition approach to Leica M mechanical rangefinders, which with their elegant simplicity and unadulterated view of the world suited him better to tell stories and capture fleeting moments. A decade later, as he began working with digital cameras, he expanded his subject matter to contain minimalist urban and nature landscapes in both visible and infrared light. While he still uses a Leica M6-ttl with black and white film from time to time, he mostly works nowadays with digital cameras for his travel and street photographs, including the Fujifilm GFX medium format cameras and a Leica M10 Monochrom rangefinder.

His photographs were published in photography magazines, such as National Geographic, Inspired Eye, LensCulture and Edge of Humanity.

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