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@nominapics - Instagram


Photo Credit: @ominiamundamundis - Instagram

I have a confession to make: I am a very, very, VERY ill man. All of the layout, design, collecting and hundreds of email-interviews were done by myself and from my bed at home and from hospital beds. My admiration for people and my drive to see BRILLIANCE come to fruition is one of the major desires in my life that drives me. So, if I don't make it, I will fall asleep knowing that I have met some really, really, REALLY swell folks, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your support and patience. And know that no monies were collected for the product that you are reading.

My life was changed the day I heard the Stephen Sondheim song “Putting it Together” sung by Barbara Streisand off of "The Broadway Album”. The hallmark of this classic song is found within in a section of those lyrics that goes: “...art isn't easy even when you're hot. Advancing art is easy, financing it is not. A vision's just a vision if it's only in your head. If no one gets to hear it, it's as good as dead. It has to come to life!” Those lyrics aptly explain my unassailable desire and determination to breathe life into Brilliance.

My life was altered in stages the day two women died that I found myself very close to although we have never met: Teena Marie and Maya Angelou. Both of these women were wordsmiths; Teena could write a set of lyrics that often left me speechless and in wonderment and in awe of her thought process. She was an Anglo woman that wrote and sang R&B and Soul from her heart. I like quality not predictability and Teena possessed just that. When Maya Angelou opened her mouth to orate always found me later thinking deeply about simple things that were molded by her outlook of the world. The wisdom she garnered in her lifetime was brilliant. I was often astounded at the order and ways that she would architect her words. Maya taught me, as well as the world, that there is a science and an art in speaking a language and recognizing the algorithms within conjugating sentences and verbs to be into whatever she wanted people to think about. Communicating is a fine art and pictures communicate well to all people. Communication establishes foundations, builds bridges, closes chasms that are often full of ignorance. Communication has an impeccably far-reaching foreign policy and a track record that is designed to smooth and roll out the red carpet for common grounds. This magazine focuses attention on minimal photography and how each photographer communicates that through their body of work.

I have been on the internet for about the past 30 years. I go way back to the days of following "Fray" a blog by Derek Powazek and I even bought one of his books titled "Design For Community". I also followed Evan Williams' (EvHead) of Blogger (purchased by Google) and then I later migrated over to Twitter. There was a blog entry that Evan wrote titled "The End of Free" that caught my attention. Back then, joining blogger and other blogger-like communities was the craze due the fact that they were free. Back then, when reading that blog entry, I couldn't imagine the end of what is free ever happening. But I think I was hoping that none of the good blog sites would start charging even though I knew that none of these sites could be properly maintained without some type of funding. But that's the reality and destination that this magazine is headed.

In this issue of Brilliance you will find a few interviews from Instagram photographers telling their stories of the affects that minimal photography has on their lives. You will notice an array of solo photos, especially in the "25 Brilliant Elements of Minimal" gallery. The "end of free" was a sobering article and is the reason of some major changes in store for this magazine coming this Fall and as well as in the year 2015, so, stay tuned as BRILLIANCE continues being put together for your enjoyment. Thank you for reading! See you in the Fall.

Editor in Chief & Founder Michael V. Bryant Mode k





"Beautifully Forgotten" Excerpts Features LISA PRESNELL

Photography Tips WILLIAM COX


Fashion Features








The Brilliance magazine is digitally published on issuu.com & bookemon.com

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"W" MARTIN MEDINA @martin_medina - Instagram







DAAN VERHOEVEN @daanverhoevenfreediver - Instagram


Interview coming this Fall


PHOTOGRAPHER | Model | Musician | Surfer California

JEREMY MCKANE GALLERY @jeremymckane - Instagram

800 Jackson Street - Dallas, Tx

Interview coming this Fall



Coming this Fall

An interview


"CALM DAMASK" by Michael Bryant Mode

Editing for Josh Johnson conditioned me to endure browsing through tens of thousands of photos each day in order to find photos that had that "it" factor. This process has worked in favor when I'm searching through the gamut of minimal photos tagged to some combination of "minimal" title. I have found a few of those photos belonging to photographer Geoff Howe. If you love nature and calm waters that have been smooth through patient shutter speed, there are a few photos of his that are simply mesmerizing. We talked about his footsteps in photography and the impact of social network. Thank you Mr. Howe for sharing some of time in discussing a little bit about your photography on Instagram. How long have you had an Instagram page?

"About 2 1/2 years. I started by posting random photos of everything, and before long had close to 1,000 photos. A friend suggested I should maybe post less. I agreed, and began the process of starting fresh and using Instagram for a portfolio of focused work on a particular subject."

I have seen many accounts that have done that which gives galleries such great quality and a professional look. Has Instagram had any influence on the way and style you shoot settings?

"It's influenced how frequently I shoot and the never-ending quest to find unique places and spaces and ideas. The constant demand for new content and competition of simultaneous feeds forces one to create value for attention. 24 hours after your photo is posted, it is relatively dead. If you don't engage with others in the process, people quickly lose interest. As an introvert and someone who takes time with their projects, it's forced me to adapt and evolve in ways to connect and create more." >>

You know that same scenario happened to me. They don't call it the social network for nothing. And I see your point about the 24 window of opportunity that's gone forever which seem so fast for 24 hours. I guess 24 hours is the new "15 minutes of fame" on the social network platform. How long have you been involved in long exposure photography?

"Since January 2013. I'm still quite fresh."

Oh, a novice, or what many here and in other sectors of the social network labels as a newbie. In either manner, Welcome! I immediately noticed a hint of professionalism throughout your Instagram gallery. Are you a professional photographer?

"I've been shooting full-time for 15 years as a freelance editorial and corporate photographer."

What's on the horizon for you in the future with your photography?"

My love for the ocean, motorcycles and travel has turned into a long term project of coastal long-exposures - which. >>

"...I hope will sustain itself financially, inspire others, and encourage participants to focus on finding and discovering their true self."

When you made mention of traveling and motorcycles reminded me of the end scene of the last episode of the tv show 'House'. House faked his death because he wanted to spend time with his best friend before he died. That scene faded to black while he and his best friend rode motorcycles down a tree lined road into the sunset. I hope that you have all of the success it takes to accomplish your goals and desires and dreams Geoff.

"Michael, I just wanted to say thanks again for this, really glad to be involved. To be honest, it's been a process trying to find a place for my work, and with like minded people to collaborate with. Thank you for reaching out, and for what you're doing with the promotion and celebration of minimalism."

Sure thing Geoff. Celebrating minimal is being done these days and I wanted to try my hand at a minimal photography magazine. Thanks again for this interview sir! If youguys haven't already, head over to Mr. Howe's Instagram gallery located under his pseudonym and name @geoffhowe.






An Interview with the Artist of cover shot



@martin_medina - Instagram

Luis Martin Medina's style of art and minimal photography embellishes in a certain type of southwestern influence, and most definitely a genius of fluid and motion minimal. I enjoyed his "Red Series" so much that I has to get in touch with him and see if he would allow a few shots of the series to featured and one shot to become the cover of Brilliance. He acquiesced, and as they say "The rest is history." Luis, did you create this setting: the red fabric?

How long have you been a professional photographer?

"I would not consider myself a professional photographer, I have an interest in the moments that normal, everyday things have, from buildings to landscapes. I try to find unexpected moments."

Your description of finding a gamut of settings to shoot sounds to me like a photographer. What is it about minimal that you enjoy most?

"Yes, this photograph (series) was part of an exploration of work while being part of LAND ARTS OF THE AMERICAN WEST (http://landarts.org/) in the Fall of 2012."

"How just a couple of lines or colors can fill the frame so much without the need of anything else, empty and full at the same time."

Where did your inspiration to do so come from? "I had visited the site before (White Sands, NM) and I knew what I was expecting to experience there, an all white, very minimal landscape, the intention was to try to get a contrast and still preserve its minimal setting somehow."

Luis, I'm glad that you did the Red Series photoshoot. Not only are these phenomenal shots but they are iconic. Thanks for the interview and a huge thank you for allowing one of your shots to be the Summer cover shot of Brilliance! All the best with all of your endeavors in the future. I'm sure we will be in touch again soon. Thanks again Luis! (Instagram pseudonym - @martin_medina)

That was executed quite well! It's pretty cool when you can bring to life what was visualized in your imagination.


An interview

Brandon Reinhardt

"Just A Click Away" PHOTOGRAPHER | EXPLORER by Michael Bryant Mode

I'm discovering so many epic shots in my minimal trek on Instagram and one of those discoveries is a shot by photographer Brandon Reinhardt that he calls "Hope Street". We chatted briefly about "Hope Street" and Brandon's outlook and style of photography. Thank you Brandon for granting me this interview. How long have you had an Instagram account?

"I have had this current Instagram account for about 6 months now. I had a different account but it got hacked to I deleted it."

Whoa! I remember when a rash of that was going around at Instagram. And it happened to someone I know. Well, it's great that you stuck around here and gave Instagram another chance or I would not get this opportunity to interview you about this cool photo of yours. You and I had a brief chat about one of your photos a while back. It is the one of the guy sitting while the subway is in the foreground. This is a very powerful shot and it has an extreme calmness about it and yet at the same time you can almost hear the subway train and can almost feel the wind as it passes by. What was the inspiration behind the photo?

"Yeah, I really love that train photo as well. Me and one of my friends (he does not have an Instagram) decided to just go out in my car and drive somewhere. We ended up in downtown LA, so we got out of my car and just started walking. We went down to the subway and i told my buddy to just sit down in front of the train and be as still as he possibly could. I then set up my camera and set the shutter speed super slow so I can get the motion of the train as it goes by. I think it turned out really, really well." >>

Yes, it did, and quite exceptionally well! It's always cool to have willing individuals who understand your passion and artistic outlook when it comes to photography and hunting for that one-of-a-kind shot. How has Instagram impacted the way you shoot photos these days?

"Instagram has helped me more than you even know in my photography. Sometimes I will catch myself on other peoples Instagram's scrolling through their feeds and being amazed and in shock at some of their photos. I have reached out to a lot of instagrammers and have talked to them and have learned a lot from them. Now when I go out and shoot, I try and remember some of the techniques that I learn from some of my very favorite Instagram accounts."Since I only got my camera about 5 months ago and have only been shooting for that long, Instagram has really helped me shape my photography and help me become the account that I am today. I am constantly looking for cool unique shots whenever I go out. For this reason, I always have a camera on me, even if it is just my phone camera. I am currently studying photography and graphic design at my local community college. I hope to graduate from the school of photography and hopefully one day make a career out of it. That would be my dream come true." >>

I hope that all of what you made mention happens for you. There is nothing like having the job that is perfect for you and to be in a position to build a career from it. For one thing, you actually enjoy going to work and two, you can't wait to awaken to head back to work the next day because it where you thrive. Here is one last question. What kind of equipment do you shoot with?

"I currently shoot with a Canon T3i as my body and I also have a 50mm F1.4 lens as my main lens that I shoot with. Occasionally I will pull out my telephoto 200-300mm and when I wanna go wide then just my 15-55mm. When I do not have my DSLR with me then I just shoot with my Galaxy S5. For editing I use Adobe Suite, such as, Lightroom and Photoshop. My favorite editing software though is actually VSCO Cam. I own all the presets and most the time I wont even bother putting my photos in light-room just VSCO."

Nice equipment, and I am also a total fan of VSCO. Whenever I want my photos to have that certain umph! I go to VSCO. Thanks again for the interview Brandon. We will be keeping an eye out for postings in your Instagram gallery and will be waiting to hear of any good news of your dream job. Thanks again sir!


An interview



Hey Eric! Thank you for this interview! You've been a really busy photographer the past number of months. In my opinion, you have assembled one of the best galleries on Instagram. How long have been on Instagram?

"I've been on Instagram about two and a half years." Oh. For some reason I thought you were her before me. It has been almost 4 years for me. At first I had joined Instagram and but never formed a longing for it so the account lay dormant for a few months. Then I posted my first photo about 172 weeks ago. But I do recall that that wasn't my first photo posted. I think it was something else because I have erased allot of photos within those years. Instagram began to impact my life because I saw something on Facebook that advertised a really cool photo and asking folks to join. That's when I remembered, because I had forgotten that I had had an account there. Then things began making sense and things just took and my life changed along with the suggested surge, back them, of a promising Instagram. Back then, Facebook was the latest rave and MySpace all but died. How has Instagram impacted your life?

"How has Instagram impacted my life? Where do I possibly begin? In terms of a tangible impact, the fact that I was blessed with winning a new Fiat 500L through @JoshJohnson and their partner @FiatUSA will have have an impact on my family that will literally change my family for years to come. When it come to what I first think about when someone asks me about Instagram, my mind always moves towards the friendships that I've made with so many people locally, throughout the US and literally around the globe. I've been fortunate enough to find friends, here in NW Ohio, that share the same interests and enjoy exploring our community. With many fellow IGers either traveling though the area or specifically making a trip to Toledo, I have been blessed with the opportunity to share the beauty of this region, but those friendships have also allowed me to spend time in Chicago, New Jersey and New York City, simply for the purpose of meeting people that I'd met through Instagram. This app has become an outlet for me to be able to share my faith with thousands of people, which is something that I was never comfortable with before and it has given me a creative voice that I now know I had been seeking for quite some time."

When you posted on your Instagram about having some of your photography on display in a museum, it opened corridors in my mind that photography was headed in a direction I have not seen since the 70's. What is on the horizon for your photography, any more museums?

As far as museums, I'll leave that up to the Columbus Museum of Art and their next Mobile Photography exhibit and our own Toledo Museum of Art, which has an amazing Social Media Director currently, that has partnered with many of our local Instagramers to put on several different meet ups with plans to hold an exhibit in the future. Having the summer off from teaching provided me many opportunities to travel locally and shoot last summer and that is something that I am certainly looking forward to doing again this summer. I will be in Chicago a couple of times this summer, plan on making a trip to Minneapolis to visit quite a few amazing IG friends in that area and I'm open to whatever opportunities come my way. I'm currently working with a company called SoulfulCreations, which allows visitors to their website the opportunity to create a print from one of my images (as well as others that are available), place character traits (of the person the item is a gift for) along with bible verses matching those traits and then have the image framed and shipped as a gift for special occasions. "Opportunities like these, to work with businesses either on a physical project, or simply one that allows me to interact with them through their Instagram feed are certainly ideas that interest me. In the end, the people that I've been blessed to interact with, meet in person and become good friends with are still the thing that draws me to Instagram everyday. I remember, for years growing up, checking books of images by specific photographers out from the library to look through and over time, gain inspiration from. I still love visiting books stores and library and perusing the photography sections soaking in the amazing talent that is found on those pages, but now I also have the ability to be inspired anywhere I am through opening up Instagram and watching the incredible work of the talented users that are found throughout the world."

Eric, it goes without saying that I really hope to see more of your photography in more venues and museums are the absolute best place to get started on that journey. Thanks again for the interview sir.



A preview of some of Eric Ward's epic photography






When I think of the word “icon”, thoughts of individuals that possess unique qualities not often reflected in most people comes to mind: a person of unshakable integrity, a person with great focus, a person with a humble thought process and a person that looks for avenues to value others. Meet Mahmoud Mfinanga. Once you see his body of work and how he executes and it is presented, will you then understand why I consider this individual one of few people on Instagram that is an icon within his own rights. Mahmoud stays busy these days and for him to add me to that busy schedule for an email-interview is truly an honor. Thank you for this interview, Mr. Mfinanga. Tell us a little bit about yourself. What do you do?

“My name is Mahmoud Mfinanga and I’m 16 years old. I’m a creative who embraces the pursuit of creating something meaningful, simple and beautiful. This pursuit has lead to me creating my blog, Emmazed Photog, which intertwines art and technology. Before starting my blog, I delved into Freelance Photography and that’s now my main occupation. I’ve had the privilege to have work featured by companies such as HTC and Jaguar multiple times. Furthermore, It’s been an interesting balance of occupying myself with the blog and my career. Being in high-school extremely limits me in terms of putting my career in full-throttle and dedicating more time to relevant things in life, but its an obstacle in life I just have to deal with.”

Oh wow! You know, I never considered you to be so young. I mean, your gallery and the collection of work had me guessing that you were probably between the ages of 23-25 years old. You are off to a great start, especially at such an age where stamina is needed, and your age is in your favor to keep fueling your passion and creative flow! How long have you been doing your prolific style of, what I call, visual interviewing?

“I started interviewing people in the beginning of this year. One of the first people I contacted was Lauren Marek. I was thrilled when she agreed to doing this interview with me. I guess the main thing that fueled my interest in interviews was my curiosity; the curiosity of the creator behind the created. Ever since then, it’s been quite a ride interviewing people’s work I admire.” >>

What is Emmazed Photog?

“Emmazed Photog is a blog that celebrates creators and the created. This celebration serves the purpose to inspire readers. This celebration gives the readers a fresh breath from their wheezing imagination, because the foundation of creativity is to inspire a n d b e i n s p i r e d . Wi t h i n t h a t inspiration, Emmazed Photog ensures a simple reading experience — no obtrusive elements; just you being able to focus on one thing at a time. My unhealthy obsessiveness in minimalism fuels the visual representation of Emmazed Photog and the content within it.”

I like that metaphoric phrase you used "a fresh breath from their wheezing imagination..." That's a classic. How long have you been a photographer?

“I’ve been a photographer for two years now. The past year, I decided to dip my hand into doing freelance work and have been doing that full-time now. It’s been an interesting ride, and I’m thankful for all the opportunities and people I’ve met in this career.”

Now I understand the contracts that may hinder what you can discuss since you do product reviews. What can you tell us about how you got started in that field of work?

“That’s something that coincided with my photographic skills; after adding photography and technology together, I knew this was a deadly combination I couldn’t overshadow. After gaining some traction from my original HTC One Photography Project by HTC, I felt confident in doing phone reviews. It all started with the Nexus 5. It was a shot in the dark requesting a review unit from one of the worlds biggest companies (I’ll let you connect the dots on that one) for a phone, however, that surprisingly worked out! Since then, I’ve made my reviews simple, easy to digest, and aesthetically pleasing to view. When I was younger, I’d always find myself crazy over reviews on Engadget, and it’s funny to think of myself as a reviewer now. The hardest part about reviews is obtaining the device in a timely manner; thankfully it has been a bit easier to get some cool devices while they’re still “relevant”.” >>

That sounds like a sweet coo, my friend. Your reviews are great and they are very honest: a definite plus. How has Instagram affected the way you take photos now prior the Instagram invasion?

“I don’t think Instagram has affected my imagery in that way. The noticeable thing that has affected my Instagram is the people I ‘follow’. For me, Instagram is a simple source to curate some amazing photographers work and I’m always motivated by others work on a daily basis — its all about following the “right people”. Recently, I’ve found myself composing images in a more symmetrical-based manner with a high emphasis on the subject matter and textures.”

Yes. I can see that. The one thing that peaked my interest about your Instagram gallery is the “This is” campaign. That's quite a creative idea and presentation in showcasing individual people. It sounds like it could be a great title for a magazine. What's on the horizon for Emmazed Photog?

“Emmazed Photog is nearing its 1 Year Anniversary this July, so I’m really excited about that. But now? I’m focusing on making the blog a streamlined experience for readers —making it as simple as it can be. I’m also diversifying the type of people that are interviewed: designers, animators, musicians, directors, writers, etc. Nonetheless, my primary focus at present is revitalizing my photographic portfolio; I’ve been too stagnant in terms of personal and commercial work. Other than those things, there are a few other things that I have under my sleeve that I’ll share in the coming weeks.”

I can't wait until Mahmoud's future posts on Instagram because I know that whatever it is that he has in the works will be visual gems and this guy is just getting started. Thank you for this interview Mahmoud. Folks, you can find Mr. Mfinanga under the pseudonym @emmazedphotog - Instagram. Thanks again, Mahmoud. "This is" a cool thing that you are doing!


"D E E P S I L E N C E"

CRISTIAN RODRIQUEZ Photographer @crist_ro - Instagram


Interview coming this Fall





An Interview




By Michael Bryant Mode

I am humbled at how far this magazine come, and in such a short amount of time. One of the great finds that has happened to Brilliance started off with that infamous one-word comment, "Brilliant!", is left in each comment section of a great minimal shot. When I stumbled across Angelia's Instagram gallery, I was certain that I had found an editor's Instagram page that worked for Cosmopolitan or Vogue. I was thinking "this person is too popular and will never answer back." Well, to my surprise she did and here is the interview that we eked out. Hello Angelia! First let's start out asking you: How long have you had an Instagram account?

"Around 7 months ago under this account after I stopped using another account for more than a year."

That sounds therapeutic and sort of similar that I did when my personal Instagram page began distracting people from the posts that were commercial. How did you get into minimal?

"I enjoy minimalist things not because minimalism sounds great but I have passion in it. I love to surround myself with minimalist goods. In taking photos, I do it in minimalist way to remain consistent. Minimal means less and I have to deal with less elements inside the frame, that's why I need to pay more attention for each thing taken. So far, I always believe in composition, color harmony, and clarity to achieve my own standard of perfect photo."

Yeah, it shows throughout your gallery. Where does your inspiration come from?

"I think most of the inspiration in this whole world comes from our daily goods. It's around us, it's real, and it gives naturalness to every photo. Also, I've been inspired by what nature gives us like flowers.

"...I love to take a photo using flowers whether in a bouquet or pieces. They make every photo looks beautiful and well-prepared."

I have noticed that your gallery's predominant theme is minimal black and white and green. I love the shots captioned "Tea diffuser", "Chasing delicious", "Going sheer", "White chocolate lollipops", "Calm", "Today's reading", "A pair of simplicity", "Glass", and "gaining knowledge". I like all of your photos but those aforementioned stand out to me. Why those main colors?

"It's simple because I love the mixture of black and white in my photo. White brings clarity if stands alone while black will stand out on white background. Sometimes I put a hint of green to bring my photos to life and to balance the mood inside of it. One more reason is those three colors are quite natural in cool tone, so it's easier for me to edit the saturation and the contrast."

Oh wow! I'm learning so much from this interview. Do you have any favorite photographers on Instagram?

"I adore Michelle Lau because she captured all her essentials effortlessly chic, Sara Medina Lind for her shade of white feed, and Cindy Chen for her amazing flat lay photos."

All of whom I have never heard of but will be checking out. Thank you for this email-interview Angelia. It has been my pleasure.

Part 2 of this article continues on the following pages and is an introduction of someone that I am proud for you all to meet. She is the editor of MODE, the minimal fashion & Photographer for BRILLIABCE: Angelia Prisca.



i! I'm Angelia Prisca. I would like to formally introduce myself. I'm 21 years old. I'm currently living in a small city near Jakarta with my beloved family. I graduated from ESMOD Jakarta with major fashion design and pattern drafting, then worked as an assistant in one fashion brand in Jakarta. Now, I'm studying in University with major English Education, also it's my last year. I know that fashion and English education is a way too different but after few months thinking, I'm finally here, in this level under English major. Beside being a college student, I'm also an illustrator and a self-taught photographer. It's my passion to capture thing, that fits my Instagram's mood which has minimal style, whether it's about fashion or just daily life goods. Welcome to the fashion side of Brilliance!

In 20th century, many artists apply minimalist style in their concerned field whether in architecture, photography, fashion, or even fine art. We often see minimum amount of elements such as shape, color, and line in one art work. Contrary to what it may seem at a first glance, minimalist style seems easy to carry out, but the phrase “less is more” is not as easy as we think. As in photography, to capture a perfect shot, we have to deal with the main element and try to give the viewer a great center of attention inside the photo. A photographer should ensure that the photo has the overall idea to deliver the message right into the point even with very minimum elements. Minimalist style also can be applied in fashion through many different ways, from sleek lines and simple shapes to monochromatic colors in various shades of neutral. In every shot captured, I always try to stay minimal, emphasize the point of each object shown, and keep the same tone for each photo in my gallery. I also maintain the angle and the background color because if the background doesn’t fit the object above it, the object won’t stand out as it should to be. Almost in every photo in my Instagram has shades of white background in order to keep it clean and attractive even for white objects. Here is a suggestion: try to keep the balance of shades and elements to get a great mood! >>

This is my kind of morning routine to make a cup of homemade chai latte with more spices. I choose this photo as one of my favorite because it represents my daily routine and it has all the minimal elements that I want to come up. Hand in frame style also brings more life to it and I just realized that my nails color matches the marble table, so it's a plus.

This photo was taken in 2013 when I was traveling in Istanbul, Turkey. It's not a carpet, in fact, it's a flag. I named it "The Flying Carpet" because the string doesn't appear in this shot and it's like a flying carpet, just simple. I love the clean sky as it makes the building stand out in contrast and also by reducing the saturation, it looks more calm than before.

White roses, a cup of black coffee, and a clean cookbook in terms of design become my favorite things at this time. I put three of them in one frame as the main objects in order to represent me and my lifestyle. I chose white roses because they bring tranquility next to the firm black coffee. Why I named it "Gaining Knowledge" ? It's because I learned a lot from this book and it gave me a new perspective to see things positively.

Nowadays, marble top table is becoming more popular because of its durability and it adds an elegant look for the photo itself. As the main object here is a piece of sheer thing, so marble texture fits it more. I love this shirt because it has two kind of different fabric colors which are solid white and sheer white, also there's a cool tone in it. For me, this photo speaks the minimal element in elegant way without leaving the clean looking as the main character.

I love pound cake! It tastes like a real cafĂŠ au lait just like the name given from the baker. The dark brown color really stands out in front of the grey box behind and I just simply love this shot because at the end I decided to cut it into pieces and it's better than a whole cake shot. The pieces bring life into the minimal colors in this photo. It's just simple and conventional.

I do really like flowers and I have to fill my house with flowers everyday or something might be different. The soft pink color represents femininity and beauty. Most of them are closed bud because I want to show the innocence and purity as the main point of this photo. I put the plate on the empty white background just to make sure that all eyes will see just the flowers

The partial gallery of



New York

Interview coming this Fall

RYAN MATUSZEWSKI @ihateryanmat - Instagram

New York

RYAN MATUSZEWSKI @ihateryanmat - Instagram

New York

RYAN MATUSZEWSKI @ihateryanmat - Instagram

New York


RYAN MATUSZEWSKI Photographer @ihateryanmat - Instagram

New York






@catherinefdavis - Instagram



BRILLIANT! Elements of Minimal

What is often overlooked and categorized as mundane or as a bore is the world of minimal photography. When it comes to photography, these days, everyone is taking pictures because simply put; people want to share their world with others. When it comes to minimal photography, a deserved second look is warranted due to the oddity and nature of minimal photography. Less is more and when captured in a photo can be quite exquisite and magnificent. One person might ask "Why is that orange peel laying on that coffee-table? I don't get it. What's so interesting about an orange peel on a coffee-table?" Yet, another person might express completely different sentiments about that same setting, such as, "Wow! That's really interesting! I like how the texture and color of the orange peel contrast with the wood grain of that coffee-table. It gives this shot a rustic look. It's like it belongs there!" Some folks say that you either like minimal or you don't. I say that it's all in the details. Next time, when browsing minimal photos, take a closer look. See if there was anything you didn't notice the first time you saw the photo. Now you can practice that initial or second look at these following 25 minimal photos by some extraordinarily talented photographers. Enjoy!

Yoyo Ferro

@yoyoferro - Instagram


Flemming Deleuran @b25andahalf - Instagram


Nic Ransley

@nic_ransley - Instagram


Nathan Michael

@nathanmichael - Instagram


Nancy B

@nblux - Instagram


William Rain

@williamrain14 - Instagram


Andreas Dornacher @ehemalinge - Instagram



@dodovo - Instagram


Marius Svaleng @lekestove - Instagram


Jonny Love

@jonnylove8js - Instagram


Susan Blanda

@susanblanda - Instagram


Annette Widitz

@dawa_lhamo - Instagram


Ahmad Subki @subky - Instagram


Newt Hinds

@contr4st - Instagram


Joseph Paul

@josephdjohn - Instagram


Vince Larson

@_vince_larson_ - Instagram


Bolor Batkhuyag @bolorchris - Instagram


Rob Lewis

@rob_zom_b - Instagram


Tony Scott

@tonystx - Instagram


Daniel Rueda Cuerda @drcuerda - Instagram


Deborah DeFranco @artpulse - Instagram


Lauren Blissett

@missharmonybliss - Instagram


Art Bradley

@artbradley - Instagram


Marcus Cederberg

@marcuscederberg - Instagram


Daniel Cox

@danielmicahcox - Instagram





Drew has joined the BRILLIANCE Team and an interview about his career is coming this Fall. In the meanwhile, here is a quick glimpse of just a few shots of his awesome photography.

"Thu Bon River"


Photographer @drewhopper - Instagram

Hoi An, Vietnam

"End of the Rainbow"


Photographer @drewhopper - Instagram


An Interview with a marketing genius


Sometimes, there comes along a photographer that shoots an ordinary photo and presents it to the world in an extraordinary way. That photographer is Anthony Scott. The scene? Well, here is Tony's story and the brilliance behind this epic composition. Tony, Is this shot in front of the Walt Disney Concert Hall?

"Yes, this particular photo was captured outside the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Downtown Los Angeles. Although I've seen this beautiful building before, I haven't had an opportunity to explore it and take photos."

Well, I'm glad that were able to shoot this piece of architecture the way you did. What made you want to present this photo in the manner that you did? Because at first I had to do a double-take. What made you present this photo in the manner that you did? Because at first I had to do a double-take.

"I went on an adventure with a group of friends and we had our own little mini-instameet in Downtown LA called #DTLAfortheDay. One of my buddies (Nathaniel @navanel) was visiting from Kansas City, MO and has always wanted to see the Hall. I was shooting with an extremely creative bunch (including Kyle @asenseofhuber & Sierra @lilfoxx) and we inspire each other to take on creative brilliance and not just shoot 'normal' shots whenever possible. I'm a huge fan of the classic "jumpstagram" and because of the esthetics of the building, I knew this would be a prime opportunity to finally try something minimal with a #wickedflip edit. So, @navanel tossed up his hat and did the jump and we were both extremely please with the way the shot turned out. This was just before sunset and the light was perfect." >>

That is an extremely creative idea! I read in your bio two cities: Dallas and LA. Are you based in Dallas or Los Angeles?

"I was born and raised in Dallas, but just recently relocated to Los Angeles. Definitely a major change of geography, but my creativity has grown to new heights based on all the beautiful California scenery available for shooting. Sunsets at the beach never get old. I still have family in Dallas and travel back and forth regularly."

Oh, so, that explains the tale of those two cities. Speaking of California scenery, What was the inspiration behind this shot?

"This shot was basically inspired by a desire to do something different. That's why I love connecting with other Instagramers whenever possible. The creative juices just seem to flow and it's great getting to know new people. This particular group that I shot with are major creative geniuses in my opinion. We all have different perspectives on our feed but I highly respect each person's work. The other inspiration for this shot was that it was @navanel's first time seeing this building. He was desiring to visit and shoot at the Disney Hall and this was my way of trying to capture some of his excitement to be there. Although I've been a fan of his on IG, this was our first time meeting in person and I had to shoot something awesome and memorable with him."

I think you succeeded quite nicely and I'm really glad that I found this photo. This should be one of those shots that propel your Instagram gallery as a Suggested feed. Thanks sharing this exciting and fun shot! Please visit Tony's gallery on Instagram under his pseudonym @tonystx. Thanks again Tony.


"ANTHONY SCOTT" @tonystx - Instagram


"ANTHONY SCOTT" @tonystx - Instagram


"ANTHONY SCOTT" @tonystx - Instagram


TIPS "Becoming a Better Photographer"

by William Cox (the) @sciencehill360 (guy)

"I was recently pulled into a discussion about becoming a better photographer. I had to think on that for a while and decided to write down a couple of my thoughts. This may not apply to anyone but me, but I’ll share anyway. One simple, but very easy way to instantly become a better photographer: ONLY SHOW YOUR BEST IMAGES. Sounds silly, but it works.

All photographers, including professionals, sometime make weak images. The discipline comes in taking an honest assessment of every photograph and deciding if it is really a good enough image to share. That’s a personal judgement, but it is, at the very least, a good exercise. The next step takes a tad more effort. DON’T TAKE PHOTOGRAPHS you know are not up to, or better than, your standards. When I started photography back in the 70s (high school), we used film, and it was expensive to make images. The cost was a natural incentive to make the most of your investment in each click of the shutter. You also never really knew if you had your image until the film was processed… another reason to be extra careful.

Digital photography has taken a lot of that pressure off, which in my opinion, actually makes it harder for a lot of people to improve their technique. I’m not necessarily suggesting you take fewer photos. The price of digital photography has given me the freedom to overshoot, and cull down to the best photograph (first tip...ONLY SHOW YOUR BEST IMAGES). But taking more time with a composition, learning how to use the camera (phone) exposure, focus, white balance controls (see my other tech tips #sciencehill_tips ), and just taking only photos you really want will go a long way to making you a better photographer."



NOMINA PHOTOGRAPHY @nominapics - Instagram






@tfmoralles_blog - Instagram I asked Katherine Querubin to head up the Food section of Brilliance mainly because she has one of the best minimal Instagram galleries I have ever seen. Most of her gallery focuses on food in some sort of setting. She will be searching through Instagram and browsing tagged photos for future magazine features. This bowl of cereal, for example, is one of her best pieces. Check out the rest of her gallery to get a look for yourself.

Interviews by




Food in itself is a work of art and presenting them in their solitary beauty, sometimes complemented with a few other elements, is what I enjoy doing. It is evident in a lot of my photos which gave the idea to Brilliance Magazine's creator and editor to create the #minimalfoodie tag, and I its appointed curator.

I am pleased to find many others who share the same liking for clean, simple yet playful food images. Here are some of my favorites submitted to the tag by the following talented Instagramers.

Here are the 5 features I picked for the #MinimalFoodie section, together with the short interview of each.

The questions were:

1. What's inspires your photography? 2. What is it about minimalism that you like? 3. Why did you choose to do minimal food shots in particular?

@squir_rel RASA SALDAITYTE (dried strawberries) "Photography is my hobby and I really enjoy it. I am basically inspired by whatever I see. As soon as I leave my house, I look around to see if I can spot something interesting or beautiful to capture. I am also in love with nature, there is so much inspiration there, every little thing amazes me. My other inspiration is Instagram. In the past year I have learned a lot from the talented and creative Instagram community.

I am quite new to minimal photography, but I am starting to like it more and more. Simplicity, composition, creativity of the photographer, colours, shape of the object, freedom to interpret - all this makes minimal photography interesting to me.

"As I mentioned earlier, this type of photography is new to me. I am experimenting with everyday objects and I like the fact that such simple and ordinary stuff we eat every day, like fruit, vegetables, chocolate, can look so interesting and appealing in different light, background or composition. It makes you realize that beauty is everywhere and the old saying 'less is more' is so true."

@runnerkimhall Kim Hall (pears on a stool) "Life inspires my photography. My husband teases me that I take pictures of everything. I gravitate towards clean simple objects and scenes. I love color and light.

I like minimal photography because I like to highlight the simple beauty of things without all the visual chaos. I like to let the subject shine.

I enjoy minimal food photography because I love to bake and to eat, I love the way food looks- round curvy shapes are my favorite. Again, color is a big factor in my choices."

@ack_bos ERIKA LEONE (red tomatoes) "Mobile photography evolved out of my love for artistic expression. As an interior designer and restaurant owner, food is a natural interest for photography, but I truly love to photograph almost anything that has interesting detail, color or form.

I pay close attention to the world around me and Instagram has given me a heightened awareness for photo opportunities..." >>

@runnerkimhall - Instagram

@squir_rel - Instagram

@pina_a - Instagram

@Rizmariyam - Instagram

@runnerkimhall - Instagram

"...I would consider myself a minimalist - I really don't like clutter and details are important to me, so my photography reflects that as well. I do my best to present an image in its best possible form, paying close attention to cropping and editing; particularly color saturation. If I had to pick three elements that matter to me it would be details, color and form.

My interest in food photography is mostly limited to still life images of one particular food group. I love to group multiples of the same objects, but it has to be presented just right. I am somewhat of a perfectionist so I tend to scrap much of what I take if it isn't how I envisioned it.

I am a true believer that one can find beauty in anything if they look close enough."

@rizmariyam RIZ MARIYAM (strawberries on glass) "Great photos by the Newyork based photographer Alice Gao and Kuwait photographer and videographer Husam Alawadhy lnspired me most. Now I can see beauty in everything around me.

I like minimalism because its simple and creative.. even the simplest thing might have a big story.

Actually I want to eat healthy and through my photos I want my friends to see the beauty of simplicity."

@pina_a PINA ASEKONA (Honey on a spoon) "My inspiration comes from Instagram especially playing Photo a day which is taking a photo to a daily word prompt. It makes me think creatively and take photos of things I would usually miss in our every day.

I like the simplicity of minimalism photography. The simply things are often the best. Minimal food shots focuses on the subject matter without other distractions." k

@ack_bos - Instagram


@OguzYalim Instagram


Flemming Deleuran gives us a play-by-play description of each of his photos featured and how he came up the finished look of each still.

"Giraffe 1. From Uganda, Africa, Muchison Falls National Park. The photo was taken during a safari with a 300mm lens. It was looking a little bit like a storm might be coming on. The stormy atmosphere was highlighted afterwards in Photoshop with the dark colors, which make the majestic giraffe stand out in the picture. A little bit of blur was added around the giraffe to keep the focus on it.

Giraffe 2. (Close up). From The Copenhagen Zoo. Actually quite an ordinary picture of a giraffe. The distinct black background was added afterwards and the contrast/shadows heightened on the giraffe to dramatize the effect a bit. So instead of just a giraffe in an ordinary zoo atmosphere, we’re brought back to the African savannah.

Farmer: From Sweden. I sent my son out in the fields with a straw hat, a rake and a lumberjack shirt. To put more focus on “the farmer,” I added a black background in Photoshop. The image gets a bit of a dramatic lighting effect, which makes it seem like “the farmer” is raking the moon. One might get associations of the first images of Armstrong on the moon."

"Bird egg. From Sweden. One unfortunate egg from a blackbird nest was lying on the ground. I took it with me and captured the image multiple times with a long shadow effect from the side. Later, I used the egg color in the background to give the picture an aesthetic, minimalistic feel.

The bird: From The Copenhagen Zoo. One successful opportunity from many attempts where luckily the bird came very close to me. Just a little bit of contrast gives the photo its effect.

Flamingo: From The Copenhagen Zoo. I’m crazy about the flamingo’s orange colors. So subsequently, it was only natural to use orange as the background color in order to make an impression with this photo.

Skydiver. From Denmark. An older Dakota (DC3) plane was flying low over our house, and I managed to get some shots of it. Afterwards I let my fantasy run freely, and I put a person wearing ordinary clothes making it look like he has just jumped out of the plane--- perhaps forgetting his parachute."

FLEMMING DELEURAN @b52andahalf - Instagram

Denmark Scandinavia


Here are a fraction of photos from the hundreds of photos tagged to our #brilliancemagazine_minimal_colors tag. The colors we asked for were Orange, White, Black, Blue and Red.

























Some say, "Music calms the savaged beast." So, imagine what kind of an effect minimal photography infused with music overtones memorabilia, as displayed in the photo on the following page, by photographer Nana Tsay, might have on people. MTV, from back in the day, comes to mind. Nana Tsay is the newest person to join the BRILLIANCE team, and how she expresses her minimal music infused posts from her Instagram gallery is quite refreshing. She will head up the music section of BRILLIANCE called "TONE". She will not only be sharing her flavor of minimal music photography but she will also be on the lookout to featuring other photographers from Instagram in the Fall issue September 11.





@Instafraner - Instagram

@tfmoralles_blog - Instagram

@klc_in_a2 - Instagram


When I was 7 or 8, I took the training wheels off of my bike. I remember watching one of the next door neighbors' kid, the same age as me, take his training wheels off and hop in his bike and ride off into the neighborhood street. My trying to ride without training wheels was like a brand new baby giraffe or baby deer trying to take its first step, all of the while I knew that riding without training wheels could be done because the kid next door did it successfully. It seems like some people can quickly pick up a new task and run with it and others, myself included, it takes a little more time to master. Well, it seems that photographer Oscar DeLa Villa Jr. took to learning and mastering the art of minimal photography right away: a shorter span of time than it took me and his gallery has become a wonderful source great minimal. Oscar, how long have you been dabbling in your style of creative arts, and where did the idea come from?

"I've been dabbling with my camera for a about 4 years now. I've always gravitated toward the simple, clean, minimalistic style of photography, art, and design. It got serious when I started looking at Richard Avedon's work (a year ago) and how clean and simple it was on the human face. Portraits and headshots is another style I like to work with."

I will have to look him up because I have never heard of him before. How long have you shot minimal photography? >>

"Minimal photography is pretty new to me but since I've always had the appreciation for it I'm finding neat ways of expressing my curiosity and ability. Now that I have a serious semi-pro photography career, I have given myself creative projects to explore in order to expand my imaginative side."

That's a good ambition to have because we never stop learning so why not chose our own curriculum. That is cool smart. How long have you been on Instagram?

"I've been on Instagram for 2 years now but it's been the past month where I've sort of established a vision on how to curate my "#InstaGallery", if you will."

Yes, I understand what you mean. I have been here for almost 5 years and I just began a similar process of trying to keep my gallery focused on one theme. Are you a professional photographer?

"Semi-pro - my skills have been head-shots for the corporate, modeling, personal-branding, and social media arena. By day (night rather) I'm a sommelier at a Michelin 3-Star restaurant in the Napa Valley."

That's a really interesting career that you have and one that I gave always aspired towards. I look forward to seeing what you post next because I'm sure it will be simple yet quite extraordinary. Thanks again for sharing your work. Oscar's Instagram pseudonym - @odlvjr


"I am always looking for new and different minimal shots. So, if you notice the above word, "Brilliant!" in the comment section of your photo, it will only be a matter of time before you are contacted and invited to take part in the next issue of the Brilliance magazine, due in the Fall. Until then, keep posting those extraordinary minimal photos."

@brilliancemagazine - Instagram k





"Morning Walk"

NOMINA PHOTOGRAPHY @nominapics - Instagram


Brilliance: Elements of Minimal Copyright Š 2014 by Michael Bryant Author is the founder and editor in chief: Michael Bryant Mode Acknowledgment I have asked each person involved in the BRILLIANCE magazine for clearance of using their photos to which each person acquiesced. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means including storage and retrieval systems without permission in writing from Michael Bryant All photos are marked by the photographers in which whom they belong. Powered By Bookemon. www.bookemon.com

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Summer issue of BRILLIANCE volume 2. Featuring the best of minimal photography from some of Instagram's prolific and innovative professional...


Summer issue of BRILLIANCE volume 2. Featuring the best of minimal photography from some of Instagram's prolific and innovative professional...

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