JONATHAN CHERRY: What did you want to be growing up?
AAPO HUHTA: I didn’t really have a dream job as a kid. I was born in the countryside of Northern Finland and had a strong urge to leave the place. I moved to Helsinki to study to be a teacher at University but I never really thought of doing it actually. I was really lucky that I coincidentally found photography and fell totally in love with doing it.
JC: Who or what is inspiring you at the moment?
AH: There are quite many things I follow, so it’s difficult to pick out just one or two. Lately I’ve been more into “fast photography” again and was just returning back to Bruce Gilden’s photos and a documentary of him a couple of days ago. He’s such a direct and honest guy.
JC: What are you up to right now?
AH: I’m editing a book that I shot in New York. In the meantime I’m shooting portraits for magazines and planning to hitch hike in France with a friend of mine who I haven’t seen for a long time.
JC: Have you had mentors along the way?
AH: Not really, I mean there have been some really good teachers along the way but I would say that the biggest support comes from my closest friends with whom we share a similar mentality. I would call them peers rather than mentors.
JC: Where are you based right now and how is it shaping you?
AH: I just moved back to Helsinki from New York. It’s quiet here and I’m focusing on my editing work at the moment, so it’s a good place to be.
JC: One piece of advice to photography graduates?
AH: As I’m finishing my own studies soon I would advice to focus on a one thing you feel really excited about and try to make one really good body of work. I believe it’s good to try different things and to not to define yourself too fast, but being patient and focusing on one thing develops other qualities you possibly wouldn’t find otherwise.
JC: If all else fails - what is your plan B?
AH: I haven’t really thought about it. I feel really lucky to be able to do what I do and also make a living out of it. But I guess I could do something else for a living as well if I can still manage to have time for my personal work.
JC: Is it important to you to be a part of a creative community?
AH: It is important to know people who can help and support me. It depends on the personality I guess. I’m not really a collaborative person but I appreciate having a couple of really close friends with whom to share thoughts and ideas.