Hossam Antikka is an Egyptian talented photographer and art director. Although he did not take any professional courses in that field, he climbed the mountain of success eagerly through only his passion for art. In our little chat with Antikka, we asked him how he got into photography, what inspires him, his plans for the future, and many other things.
Tell us about yourself, what do you do and how you started?
My name is Hossam Antikka and I’m more than just a photographer. I’m an instructor, an art director and a film maker. No formal training, all self-taught. I always say about myself that I’m ‘self-made’ because I truly believe it’s the best way to learn something you are interested in. I used to do a lot of stuff: online gaming, watching animated movies and series, hip-hop dancing and skating. And by the way, I am not a random gamer, I used to have that passion for kicking ass in every cyber game possibly. I used to be a legend. I’ve been known for my extraverted, sensing, thinking and perceptive personality. My desire is to create an artistic and lively images that capture the essence of people. Photography is an art. It won’t tell you what to see and how to see it. You only need your own eyes and your own sight of seeing things.
What drew you to photography?
In my old business as personal trainer, I used to see a lot of athletes taking pictures of themselves. And as usual, I scrutinize everything and I focus a lot on how this thing is done, so I noticed if the light comes over them, their muscles appears much bigger and if it comes directly in front of them, their tummy appears flat and plane with no six pack, so I offered to photograph them for free. And I found that little spark that tells me this your track, start running!
What was the hardest part of your journey so far?
My first camera was not professional, it was digital, so I decided to work a lot for a year to get my first professional camera. Then, I started working in the field of photojournalism. Then something unexpectedly happened, guess what? My camera was stolen and I was in a total mess. I was depressed and I stayed in the house for a long time. I was frustrated and I always wonder why this is happening to me, but I never give up on doing something, so I started all over again. I worked for another year to collect money to buy a brand new camera with higher options. This time I said to myself this is your time to make this camera your source of income more than just something you love to do.
What achievement are you most proud of?
When I look at my body of work, the stuff that I’m proudest of and the stuff that means the most to me, I’m so immensely grateful for being able to create things every day. I can say that the most achievement I have now is that I’m Canon’s face for their new camera, in addition to collaborating with big brands like PEPSI, CHEPSI, Coca Cola, OPPO and Vodafone.
Who and / or what inspires you?
The one who inspires me is the ‘ME’ in the future. While doing all of this, you need your source of support that pushes you and tells you you’re good, you need to do more, you can do it. To me, family comes first: my mum, my brother Mohamed and my sister Toqa, but it’s all about My Mum. My Mum is my everything. She’s the main reason of my existence. I owe her for being me. She’s my backbone. I always take her advice over anyone’s and the funny part is that she is always right. And Salma, my wife, is always there for me in my ups and downs and I want to thank both of them for being in my life.
What challenges do you face as famous figure?
Not much actually, but if I am in a crowded place, I could stand for more than five hours only to take pictures with fans and I can’t refuse or say no because they will consider me as a conceited person and I am not that guy at all.
What major risks have you taken in your career?
At the time I got engaged, I had to buy my fiancée an engagement ring, but I chose to buy a new lens for my camera rather than the ring.
What are your milestone failures and successes?
Till now, there’s no milestone failures, but I have failed to be a routine person, the one who wakes up every day to do the same thing. That moves us to the point of how I stay motivated. I dedicate time to watch pictures, a lot of pictures for a worldwide famous photographers, watching movies, and photography international competitions, all of that motivates me to do more and to wake up every day having that power to take a good photos. As for successes, there’s no milestone success other than in a short time I built my own business, my own company, my own career, an influential name for people, and a good reputation between celebrities.
What are some of your spare time activities?
This is something I don’t like in my profession, I rarely find myself free or have time to do what I love or be with people who I love to spend time with. So, I can say if I wasn’t a photographer, I would be a professional hip-hop dancer.
What would you say were the key elements to your success?
I think if everyone focused on what they want to do, what they need to be, everybody will find their key, but for me, it’s my insistence, I love doing what I do, my sense of responsibility for where I got and what I am now, I always set the bar high.
Favorite travel destination?
My favorite place is Alex. It’s my comfort zone. Also, Siwa Oasis. I never been there, but I think I’ll find my peace of mind there. Abroad, I think California or Canada.
My Mama’s fries.
Favorite clothes and shoes brand?
I always stay comfortable about what I wear. I like Swaggy outfits. My favorite shoes brand is Nike Air and Jordan sneakers generally.
Who have you blocked recently? Have you ever spied in anyone on Instagram or FB?
I blocked the toxic relationships in my life and people that their existence makes me stressed out and giving me negative vibes. I lately started stalking Suzen, the fashion model. I love her so much, by the way, she’s my best friend.
If you were president for a day, what major changes would you implement?
My major purpose as a president would be modifying people’s thought about cameras and photography. People here get so tense when they see cameras or someone holding it. I would provide a lot of skate parks all over Egypt. I will provide protein shakes, smoothie coolers and suitable places for running and street workouts. I want people to open their minds and relate to photography, dancing and art in general.
What super power do you wish you had? And why?
I want to be a vampire, always young and fast and the most important never needs to sleep, just like Damon in ‘The Vampire Diaries.’ I want to be smart like Detective Conan and have Kakashi’s Sharingan. For those who do not know what Sharingan is, Sharingan is an ability that allows the user to copy an enemy’s technique simply by viewing it. It’s an important ability in the Naruto world.
What are your plans for the future?
I don’t have any plans for the future. I just want to prove to myself before anyone that I am capable of doing the impossible and as I told you I always set the bar high for me and for anyone. I always keep in mind that now or later on, I’ll shift career and let the wild side in me control and do what I love the most, be a professional dancer and start making my own identity of clothing and launch my own brand.