Sunday, November 23, 2014

Interview with Polina Washington

Polina Washington is a 23-year-old Russian photographer, based-in Saint-Petersburg. She started shooting when she was 15 with digital but currently shoots mostly fine-art portrait with film.

Polina, one of the artists always have specially creative ideas in photography, who was featured twice on Shooting Film accepted to join with us in an interview where she would like to share more of her work.

- Can you tell us more about you?
I’m a 23 years old photographer from Saint-Petersburg, but actually I don’t really like the title 'photographer'. I used to think of myself like visual fairy tailor. I collect invisible worlds and mysterious moments which are hidden from the reality.

- What does photography mean to you?
Photography means everything for me: I catch moments, keep a visual diary and express my feelings through the self portraits I usually do. It won’t be much to say that I can’t imagine my life without shooting. I guess  it’s not me who is responsible for the style and vision I have: shooting made me this way and I feel like an invisible hand is tending me. About a year ago this «hand» lend me to the forest. Since that moment I’m looking for inspiration in a deep and pathless woods, where I try to escape from time to time. Living in a big city is annoying and modern human has almost lost this powerful connection with nature. My work is to show people that our souls are reflections of Mother Nature.

- Your film photos are so amazing and we know that you always have creative methods to make them more impressive, especially multiple exposure photography. Can you share with Shooting Film readers more of your work?
Everything started from multiple exposition. I completely fell in love with this method after buying Nikon FM2 camera. It was really something fresh after simple black and white documentary photographs I used to do. So I started to work with it. I usually try not to think about technique side and special aspects of working with multiple exposition because I like the idea of 'sudden shot', but all in all I’m pretty versed in this method and I know how lights and shadows connect with each other. I try to teach myself not to think too much before taking a shot. Its putting me off from shooting more. Not so long  ago I started  experimenting with soaking film and here I see a huge field of experiments. I had been studying chemistry and film processes in University but forgot everything completely.  Now i have no idea about the result with all this new soaking liquids I try and I love this way of mystery.

- Who & what are some of your influences?
Mostly I find inspiration in paintings. Here your fantasy grows from a white blank paper sheet, you’re completely free in creating your own reality . If you start exploring, you will find that there are  lots of gorgeous painters who are not so big-named like Van Gogh or Leonardo Da Vinci but still have an impressive art. For example I really love Francesco Balsamo, Theodor Kittelsen, Edvard Munch, Benhamin Konig, Sophie Lécuyer, Miles Cleveland Goodwin, Mikhail Vrubel, Caspar David Friedrich, Viktor Vasnecov and many others. All of them created very special worlds around nature. In photography I’m blown away by many talented artists, but  Robert Moses Joyce, Michaela Kniziova, Alison Scarpulla and Aëla Labbé are my favorites.

- Do you have any photography projects in future? 
I’ll have some collaboration work in future, mostly in jewels. I’m very interested in these kind of projects because here it’s like a connection of two worlds, two visions. If the atmosphere between my art and jewels (or other stuff) is close, there won’t be no problem in shooting pictures. Also it gives  me an opportunity to meet beautiful and talented people: for me it means a lot.

- What can you say to people who want to try analogue. Any tips?
Forget all the photographic rules and turn to yourself deeper: we all have our own special universe, try to reach it!

Polina, thank you for the interview!

See more of her work at:

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