Fantasy is reality: Surreal portraits by Hardijanto Budiman

Based in Jakarta, Indonesia, Hardijanto Budiman is a self-taught photographer who is interested in all types of photography especially surreal subjects. In his photographic journey he’s been trying and learning many kinds of photography, from landscape to street , from still life to people. For him, photography is a media to express passion in art. “I never classify myself as a ‘pure’ photographer, my works is about how I represent my expression of art through camera and other elements which support it.” Here Hardijanto shares with us his creation idea about his series “Fantasy is Reality”.

©Hardijanto Budiman

GP: When did you start photography? Do you think photography has something in common with painting?

Budiman: I've been starting photography since 2003. Yes! In my opinion photography has something in common with painting.

GP: Is this series basically planned before shooting, or did you just design it according to the gesture and expression during shooting?

Budiman: Yes it is! Before I made this photo series, everything was planned by creating kind of Story board which content details illustration of the concept.

©Hardijanto Budiman

©Hardijanto Budiman

GP: Your photography works are very expressive. The audience usually cannot help wondering the original intention of the photo. Is there a story or something meaningful behind each of your works?

Budiman: My photography represents the expression of my mind! I make an analogy about my mind like Playground in a Wonderland, the world between fantasy and reality.


©Hardijanto Budiman

GP: In your series, the character is either lacking a head or having an extra arm, which makes people feel somewhat horrified. What do you want to express?

Budiman: Normally when you see a person inside a photo, you directly focus on the face, don't you? But let’s say if I make the character on photograph headless or with extra arms for instance, it will make the viewers more curious to know about the concept or idea behind it rather than focus only on the face.

©Hardijanto Budiman

©Hardijanto Budiman

GP: You seem to be cautious about the use of color in photography. The works are mainly black, white and gray, and almost no other strong colors. Why is that?

Budiman: I think it's simply about "Taste"! I don't much like to see photographs with too many colors or over saturation.

GP: A lot of props are used in the process of shooting, such as bathtub, scissors, animals, flowers. What meanings do they indicate?

Budiman: Properties is the important element in my conceptual photographs. It will emphasize the concept as a body of work to the photographs.

GP: Your work often gives us the feeling of eagerness for freedom. Is this related to your personality?

Well, I can say it is! Art is about freedom, isn't it?

GP: What do you think of the relationship between fantasy and reality?

Budiman: People tend to believe what they want to believe! If we believed fantasy is reality then it goes to become reality.


©Hardijanto Budiman

GP: From the perspectives of composition, lens language, and photography skills, which one is your favorite photo in this series?

Budiman: My favorite is the photograph with title “Water Runs Dry” This picture tells about how human behavior sometimes destroy life and environment. How do you feel if, say, you are twisting in position as a fish in the jar? Then let the fish free and enjoy watching you from outside the jar? Can you feel it?



@hardibudi: Congratulations!
Thank you very much GLOBAL PHOTOGRAPHY for all your kindly support and opportunities! Hope to see y