Interview: Photographer Alex Krivtsov (Russia)
Tell us something about yourself
I was born in the USSR, on the peninsula CRIMEA. I am a southern person, I love the sun, the heat, thick black shadows, the sea, the high blue sky and pictures of white clouds ... Fate brought me to the northern city of my country - St. Petersburg, and it became for me a wonderful, friendly, beloved house, a source inspiration. Since my childhood I've loved drawing, I loves graphics all my life. I think that in photography Im realizing my dreams of a graphic artist. I love the black and white image, for me this aesthetics is attractive and interesting. This love appeared in me thanks to black and white cinema and drawing with black ink, a meeting with the masterpieces of old photography masters. I started to shoot as a child on a black and white film of 35 mm, then on a film of 70 mm. My camera in school and undergraduate years was LUBITEL 166, an apparatus similar in appearance to ROLLEIFLEX, but it was far from ideal. The technique was amateur and simple, but it helped to realize creative ideas and aspirations.
I saw a difference in the quality of images from a narrow film and medium format film, so I began to strive for high image quality, beautiful optics, "airiness" pictures. This desire led me to excellent cameras Nikon D800 and Contax 645af.
How and when did you get into photography?
The photo entered my life when i was a child. My brother (he was older than me) studied the basics of photography and shared with me his knowledge. I was surrounded by school friends, beautiful girls who gladly posed for me and were happy with successful photos. During my youth, a man with a guitar and a man with a camera was very important in any company! But I rather wanted to be invisible and be able to observe, catch moments of sincere emotions. It turned out that these qualities are very important for a good photographer. Interest in cinema and photography led me to the Institute of Cinematographers, where I studied film and film projection techniques. Technical, engineering education is very useful in my life and profession of photographer. In my work often there are non-standard situations that require technical savvy, quick practical thinking. After receiving the film engineer's diploma, I was educated as a photojournalist. Photography has become a matter of my life, my professional work and great passion. In the mid-90's, but I was impressed with the work of Helmut Newton, especially portraits. I think it was a turning point in my life. In those years in Russia it was impossible to get a professional education for a fashion photographer or an advertising photographer, the information had to be searched independently in magazines and books. But the desire to master mastery, to become a master of photography was very strong. It still leads me to a new understanding of photography, new knowledge. Thanks to the World Wide Web (Internet), thanks to magazines like Modellenland it's now much easier to get acquainted with the masters of photography, to discover the secrets of mastery. This is very pleasing to me. I wish prosperity and success to all who try to help us improve and learn something new and interesting!
What does photography mean to you?
A photo for me is a way of knowing the world, people and myself))
Photography has become a very important part of my life. This is a huge and mysterious world, an ocean in which it is interesting to travel.
Please briefly describe your style for our readers.
I try to be considerate and receptive (sensitive) to the people I'm shooting, to the situation that develops on the set. I try to catch the "decisive moment" that will reflect both the instantaneous state and with it the generalized understanding and impression, the state of the human ... I hope that the translation from Russian to English will convey the correct meaning)))
As for me, the essence of photo art is the combination of instantness and the reality of what is happening with the ability of this little moment to tell a great story. It's like seeing infinity in an instant. When I realized this, I began to make a photo project entitled "On the Infinity of the Moment." It was very interesting and beautiful. And erotic))) I appreciate the individuality and sincere feelings, I try to show just this - the beauty of individuality.
I am walking like on the "razor's edge", not tempting the viewer with obvious vulgarity and at the same time, I do not limit my freedom in creating frank personnel. I balance on the brink of rigidity of emotions and harmony of feelings, provocation of unexpected foreshortening and demonstration of natural sexuality. Do you get this, judge you)) I try to show the best features of my models, interesting features that excite me. This is a process of co-creation, creation between the artist and the model, which is possible only thanks to an honest and careful attitude towards nature. My work is often an absolute improvisation, it's like visual jazz with its polyrhythm and pulsation, causing a passion and a feeling of unity, giving a feeling of tension and liberation.
Where do you get inspiration from?
Inspiration is always a mystery to us) Inspires the diversity of the world, inspires cinema, painting, good photos, beautiful people and architecture, music. The music is very inspiring! I can not answer this question unambiguously. For the answer, a new interview will be required)))
Think you in advance what do you want in the picture?
I'm preparing for the shooting. I try to learn as much as possible about the person with whom I work. I try to learn about his temperament, appearance ... Tasks and situations are different, shooting for advertising is very different from creative experiments. Each shooting requires its own preparation and tuning. During the work, I propose a model action plan, describe the task, I involve the model in these ideas. You always need to be a director, direct the model in the right direction. At the same time I like to improvise. Impromptu and improvisation can reveal a lot of new and interesting things to us.
Studio, on location or both?
I like to work both in the studio and abroad, in an open air. This seems implausible, but I like a variety of tasks. On the street, I watch the play of light and shadows, then I try to do it in the studio. In the studio, I control the light, create different light patterns and moods. This knowledge and discoveries then try to apply on the street))
I think it's good to be flexible and plastic photographer, having his own style (in style) both in the studio and on the street.
Would you consider yourself a hobbyist or a paid professional?
I think that before becoming a well-paid professional, one must become an enthusiastic amateur!
Now I'm a professional photographer, my work is paid. But there is also a large part (share) of creative work. For the universe, for friends, for development and new discoveries. I create photo projects that do not have a direct customer, but I really need them as a creative person. So it can be interesting to other people. I am sure that a beautifully executed work is always rewarding.
What has the most memorable session and why?
I had a lot of sessions already, I can not highlight the most interesting or the most important. Each session is a life situation, communication with the person I'm shooting. Funny, funny, difficult moments in my work is enough. I notice over time that I often have to work in conditions that I do not like! This time trouble (very little time for shooting) and cold ... Brrr.
I can name the most memorable photo project! This is the territory of the BALLET. Participants of the photo project: high-class professional ballerinas and dancers, soloists and leading ballet artists of the best theaters in Russia and the world.
This exhibition project presents unique photos of dancers, whose beauty and grace are intertwined in the architecture of St. Petersburg. Incredible things happen in the frame, the city becomes a space for creating images. You asked if I like working outside the studio. My answer is yes"! After St. Petersburg, I plan to shoot in other ballet capitals of the world.
I hope to show this exhibition in many cities around the world. In St. Petersburg and London, exhibitions have already taken place. I hope that in the near future my exhibition will want to see Moscow and New York.
Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?
Nikon. Now it's the Nikon D800. I work with zoom 24-70 mm and 80-200 mm. Also I like the drawing of lenses-the numbers: 85 mm, 100 mm, 60 mm. Sometimes I use 20 mm.
In addition to this technique, I like the Contax 645af film camera. For her, I have lenses of 45 mm, 80 mm, 120 mm.
What is one of the advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business?
Notice the beauty in people. Learn how to make good photographs with the technique that you have at your fingertips.
What do you think of our new magazine?
I want to thank you for what you are doing and wish you great success!