Interviews / Stories
Interview Monthly Winner Photographer Gabriela Machlowska (Poland)
Tell us something about yourself
I'm Gabriela and I'm from Poland. I'm freak and freaky person, who is totally in love with the city by night, mainly Cracow('cacuse this is the city where I live, I work, and where I was born).
I 'm also obssesed to cats, sound of the sea and films of Quentin Tarantino and Justin Kurzel. I'm a total autodidact: on my first training for photography - studio lighting setup, I came through the nationwide contest, where I won distinction. Also, I've had my first billboard campaign after 3 months of starting being a photographer. I still have sentiment for this festival- Crack Fashion 2015.
Furthermore, when I find a little time for myself, I try to catch up on reading books. Now I'm reading: The Art of Deception: Controlling the Human Element of Security by Kevin Mittnick.
How and when did you get into photography?
In the beginning I was a photomodel. I loved to plan a photoshoot: the place, style, make-up , even hairstyles. But I was also a graphic designer. So - almost everytime, after photoshooting I retoushed photos which I get from phptographer. I transformed them in photoshop in my style: deep contrast or delicate light, sometimes I was doing a huge photomontage - it depended from topic of photos.
And these photo, with me on them, and edited by me - began to be recommended on sites devoted to a photograph.
Of course, it's author of photo, not model, have been promoted on sites as the creator. At the first time when my photos was appeared as recommended - I was happy. Anyone will be happy when his work is appreciated. But when this situation repeated over and over - you're starting become annoyed. No one was looking for person, who's created a photo, everyone just looks on the photographer.Or otherwise: everyone just was looking on person, who holds the camera and pressed a shutter.
So I tell to myself: "Gaba, what's wrong with You ?! All You need it's camera !".
And lot of humility and patience :)
Spontaneously I bought my first camera - Nikon, and I started to shooting.
It was a hard road, but I'm on it till today.
What does photography mean to you?
Its mean everything to me. Photography is my way to relax and express myself: my thinking, my emotions.
when I'm working, I do not exist for the rest of world.
And When I'm not working, I'm playing with the photograph :)
Please briefly describe your photography style for our readers.
I love high contrasts and desaturated colors. I just love simplicity and game of shadows on photography - you can't find daub on my shots - I'm concentrating on person, which I'm shooting in that moment.
Most of my photo is central shots -but I still I try not to get bored the recipient of my work: I play with the perspective and light. I try to make my photos alive: photo do not have to be a moving - imagination will tell the rest.
Where do you get inspiration from?
From everywhere. Except simple thing like environment or people, I am fascinated by mystery.
Curiosity is crucial in photography. I love discover new places and new faces and create a new story, which I try to recount on my photographs.
I love also the work of Mario Testino and Jack Waterlot.
Delicacy od portrait of Mario testino it's just heavybreatning. Waterlot does an expressive, characteristic style. He had a great projects with beautiful scenography and light.
He shows up fashion in way, that requires a powerful imagination and vast knowledge.
Think you in advance what you want in the picture?
Every time. But in most of case - the final result is always different from intentional.
And that is why the such photo is generally the best from all of shots.
Not posed, spontaneous photo create an real art.
Studio, on location or both?
Difficult choice. I guess both.
In studio I have a bigger control above light: I can play with a studio lighting setup, and make a spectacular effect.
On the other hand, the location can be more interesting: I think there's definitely more going on.
But it depends also from effect, which you want to achieve.
Would you consider yourself a hobbyist or a paid professional?
I don't have a huge experience, I just do what I love.
Although I work also commercially, I will describe myself rather as hobbyist.
With simple reason: I do what I want, how I want and when I want.
I don't like to be limited by clients or company, whose telling me what I have to do.
What has been your most memorable session and why?
When I started photographing, I did not know anything about studio and studio lighting setup. But I want to make a professional look beauty photoshoot.
So I bought white bristol, and I took a model to the ... forest.
I was doing a whole beauty photoshoot with the pinned bristol on the tree.
The weather was not very favorable - after photoshoot, before we reached to the car, we were totally wet - but it was worth it.
One of these photos was used to the billboard Campaign of Crack Fashion Festival 2o15
For the moment when I saw my photo on the billboards in whole Cracow , it occurred to me, that Your equipment does not affect the quality of your image.
The less time and effort you spend worrying about your equipment the more time and effort you can spend creating great images.
What has been the biggest source of inspiration in your work?
I've got two big source of inspiration: fashion and people.
People, 'cause each of them has a their own story,emotions, energy and fears. And when I worked with people, I try show this story on my photography. When I planning a photoshoot and when I have a chosen model already, in my head shows up a thousand thoughts and ideas based just on that specific person. I create an abstract world just for this concrete model- of course, the whole team help me with the realisation of each photoshoot idea- make up artist, stylist, designers, hairstylist, but inspiration always comes up from the people: from their talents ( designers for example ) and their individuality ( models).
But also happens, that I walk the street, on the park or on the shopping centre and I see somebody ,which intrigue me - in that case the history formed itself - what you can see later on photographs.
Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?
Nikon. I'm not participate in the race " Canon is the best" , or "Nikon is the best". I just have a sentiment, 'cause Nikon was my first serious camera.
And of course- 36 megapixels can't be wrong.
But seriously : my dream is to work on Hasselblad camera.
What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business?
I mention that before: cameras don't take pictures, photographers do. Cameras are just another artist's tool.
Even the best equipment does not affect the quality of your image.
It's always better to spend your time and money on learning art and photography, not by spending it on more cameras.
So if You want to start being a photographer - do it ! If you can shoot well, all you need is even analog camera or a camera phone to create great work.
What do you think of our new magazine?
I was very impressed when I saw You magazine. World level!
I like that the photographs "play a first violin". There's no a too much text, which makes this magazine is very perspicuous and attracting attention.
I'm so proud to be there :)