Daniel and Magda's Fotobia Dream Studio

Daniel and Magda's Fotobia Dream Studio

Gregory Han
Jul 25, 2012

The design of the personality-filled Fotobia studio -- the headquarters of editorial and advertising photographer Daniel Goncalves -- was a collaboration between himself and wife Magda, a scientist by day who "uses her creative super powers" after she clocks out at night. Get a look at the duo's combined efforts in this tour of the color-packed Jacksonville, Florida, workspace.

So where did the name "Fotobia" come from? Fotobia is a name I made up. My whole life I've dealt with people misspelling my name, and I found that people had trouble finding my website DanielGoncalves.com because it was so hard to spell. One night while trying to think up an easy-to-remember website ad, I came up with Fotobia. It's photographic bliss.

Tell us about what you do, what you're passionate about, and where you're going. I'm passionate about making images. Compiling an anthropological record of people as they are today. I'm fascinated by fleeting moments and try to immortalize them forever with my images.

My favorite subject to study via my camera apparatus is people. I love shooting portraiture, lifestyle, and travel photography. And although I'm not a photojournalist, I love street photography and shooting sports. It's all about instinct and reaction. I find it a challenge and an opportunity to hone my craft/eye.

What inspires your work? I'm inspired by travel; it keeps my mind fresh. Most recently, my wife and I mucked around in various cities throughout the UK and also Paris. Our next major trip will be to Argentina and to Rio to experience Carnival. I can't wait.

In Jacksonville, we also surround ourselves with creative people and most of our friends are local creatives. I find them to be a constant source of inspiration.

Most of all, Magda inspires me every day with support and encouragement. She also comes up with the craziest ideas sometimes and I love it.

Tell us about your space. Any special considerations when you set it up? The studio is located in a historic seminary that was converted into lofts near downtown Jacksonville. Magda was getting fed up with my gear taking over our living space; as punishment, I got my dream studio. She has always had a love for design, graphic elements, spaces. So when we found this loft, we created the clean, modern design together.

We were as much about function as we were about form. We found all sorts of little solutions to everyday needs. I love the couch, as it turns into a comfy bed for when I'm burning the midnight oil (more often than I'd like to admit), and also converts into a great super-lounge chair for three or four people for movie nights at the studio.

The studio is not huge, but it fits our needs perfectly. It's right on the line of being just big enough to shoot in, but not so big that we don't use all the space. I love the view; it feels like we're in a secluded warehouse district. While brainstorming, I like getting lost in the image of cars on the highway looking like they are driving over the rooftops of the adjacent buildings.

You've got an Embody chair in the studio. Why did you choose it? We were thinking of getting the Aeron chair as recommended by many of our friends. We looked around and tried a few different chairs, including the SAYL. I fell in love with the design of the Embody. It's a piece of functional art. I usually cannot tolerate to sit for a long time; but, with so many possible adjustments with the Embody, it is unbelievably comfortable, for any body type. I love it and would recommend it to everyone. I definitely think it's one of my best investments. I've made my money back many times over in increased productivity.

(Images: Daniel Goncalves / Fotobia)

lifework2012-02-22 at 2.10.00 PM.jpgRepublished in partnership with Herman Miller Lifework. Originally posted by Amy Feezor.

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