Transylvania International Film Festival (TIFF) was full of surprises this year, offering a great selection of movies and special events. I’m pretty sure that most of the highlights of this edition already appeared in your newsfeed, whether Facebook, Instagram or mass media. While enjoying the most important film festival of the country, I was wondering how TIFF is seen exclusively through the camera’s lens – and most important, how is like to be on duty for this rollercoaster of amazing events. So the communication department of TIFF allowed me to interview those who photograph experiences, moments and historical moments. So let’s go behind the scene with Dan Grigore, who was part of the TIFF crew for the first time.

What does it mean to be the official photographer of the festival?

Personally, being an official photographer at TIFF is a privilege and, at the same time, a great responsibility. Privilege, because it gives you some status, because not everyone gets to be a photographer at TIFF, although many want this position. Responsibility, because many people rely on you to capture the key moments of the event, the sponsors of the event, the atmosphere and so on, and most of the time you are the only photographer at the event, so you have one shot to get it right.

What was your most amazing experience this year at the festival? Why?

The finest experience at this festival was the opportunity to be a part of the staff, to meet a lot of new people from whom I learned new things, to see how much work involves an entire department for such an event. The merits of my beautiful TIFF experience are largely due to my colleagues in the Communications Department, whom I thank.

Is there a moment of the festival which you wanted to capture but you couldn’t, for whatever reason?

I do not think there was a particular moment I would have liked to surprise, and I could not, instead, there are plenty of moments in the festival where you have to improvise something to surprise the moment. Being a very dynamic environment, where you are constantly moving, you can not always take with you all the equipment you need, that’s why you have to constantly improvise.

What’s your favorite photo you have taken at this edition of the festival? Why?

Closing gala at TIFF 2017 / photo: Dan Grigore

Closing gala at TIFF 2017 / photo: Dan Grigore

The favorite photo is even from the closing gala with the guest of the festival, Alain Delon. I did not choose this picture because it would be perfect from a technical, composing or light point of view, no, but more for the surprised moment. This is about the festival, it offers the perfect context for more natural feelings and moments.

Doing photography is an art by itself, so it’s not really easy to be done. But what’s the most joyful (trying to avoid the easy word) moment for you as an official photographer?

Being a photographer is not the easiest thing, though at first glance it seems quite simple. The most beautiful moment for me, which brings me the greatest achievement at this festival, but also in general, is when everyone is happy with the pictures I have made, appreciates your work and when the pictures come to be seen by the general public, regardless of Facebook, Instagram, AperiTIFF.