Andrei Suleik Beyond the Lens
On our first session with Andrei Suleik, we were able to get to know his creative process and photography as his craft. He even spilled the beans on going to a shoot with a broken camera, eek! In this session, we ask Andrei on freelancing in Manila and what he does outside of photography.
Andrei’s Freelance Tips
Andrei, despite being the go-to photographer of Nadine and James, is a totally chill being. No pretentiousness, no entitlement, no nega-vibes. He’s proud to call himself a freelancer and even jokingly shares in other interviews that he has moments when he starves. You know what they say, #StarvingArtist.
His ultimate freelance advice? Connections and making it happen. “You need to be visible so people remember what you do, hindi pwedeng passion-passion lang. You have to be out there, especially if you’re freelance because you’ll be the one booking your own projects.” He admits that he got lucky with the connections part. But as they say, connections get you the first gig but skill gets you the second. And as far as we can see, Andrei has been booked beyond second gig for most celebs.
On Non-Star shoots
In his early years, before he started shooting for a living, Andrei started a page called Visual Basik. He took photos of people with interesting clothes and asked them a question. He then posted the picture and the question with the subject’s answer online. “Tapos, meron palang Humans of New York!” he laughs.
When asked on the difference of shooting celebrities from non-celebrities, Andrei admits everyday people are harder to shoot. “I like shooting non-showbiz people because it’s challenging. With celebrities, you need to show other people a new side of them but for non-showbiz people, it’s a fun challenge to try to get their genuine emotion.”
A Weekend Raket
Aside from photography, Andrei is also a budding entrepreneur. This generation, afterall, is a slash generation. He’s venturing into the food industry with Sige Pares. A beef pares stand that’s currently housed in Salcedo’s Weekend Market. “It was very natural how Sige Pares happened. I asked my friend kung ano yung gusto niyang kainin on family day, Sunday and he said beef pares. Mukang masaya naman sumali and we don’t do anything on Sundays naman so we took it seriously and joined the following week. We’ve been getting good feedback, masarap naman daw,” he shares. Their menu now extends to a modernized take on bibingka, the waffle bibingka. #Yum
In his downtime, if he’s not shooting or selling scrumptious beef meals, Andrei is just like us. He likes hanging out in coffee shops to research and people-watch. “I try to research projects I want to do, subjects I want to shoot. Minsan, tinatamaan din ako ng katamaran, that’s why I try to be productive and research.” He shares that this time in a coffee shop is also his greatest /ESCAPE from the world and work.
As much as we’d like to say that Andrei is in some coffee shop right now, researching on his next shoot. Or, hanging out with his fellow photographers or friends, we can’t tell what Andrei is doing and what he’s going to be doing because as a freelance photographer, everyday is different. One day, he’ll be backstage shooting our fave insta-couple. The next day he’ll be at meetings with brands. The next, he’ll be in Salcedo selling Beef Pares. We are sure about one thing though, we’ll be seeing more of him around.
Here’s some snippets of our shoot with him!
Get to know Andrei Suleik more on our in depth interview with him on working with the hottest celebs here!
Production & Creative Direction: Nigel Garcia
Assisted by: Stevie Eigenmann
Photography: Ed Enclona
Layout by: Dana Malang
Interview by: Patricia Herbolario
Stylist: Xeena Morales
Set Design: Jed Daya
Grooming: Alyssa Espiritu
Clothing from: Uniqlo