Eliza Stegienka was always fascinated with the human nature and capturing all those natural, spontaneous moments in between. Her compelling portraits will leave you speechless and allow you to experience the world through her lens. In this interview, Eliza reveals what attracted her to portrait photography and explains why being a good fashion photographer means surrounding yourself with a great team.
Hey, Eliza! We wish you a warm welcome to Lomography Magazine! What exciting projects are you working on at the moment?
Some new personal fashion shoots - this is what I like most!
How did photography find its way into your life? When did you take your very first photograph?
I was bored on holidays before starting high school, and that's how it started. I began to take portraits of my sister and friends but didn’t think that it could also become my job in the future.
What first drew you to portrait photography? What sparks your inspiration when it comes to taking photos of people?
It’s hard to say what drew me to portrait photography. I just love to work with other people; I find it fascinating to show their emotions and catch moments of natural, not-posed behaviors. Despite I have some ideas how to show the exact person I try to make it as natural as I can.
How important is it for you as an artist to connect with your models so pictures would turn out the way you envisioned them? Is that what makes a portrait better and more meaningful?
I guess so. There is no recipe for perfect portrait but me connecting with the model is the key to make it right. I also try to create good vibes during the photo shoot and get to know my model before shooting.
Besides portrait photography, you also shoot fashion. What is it like being a fashion photographer? What is the most valuable thing you learned working in the fashion industry?
I think the most useful thing is to understand that the secret ingredient to great fashion photography is your team. Fashion photography gives me a chance to create and turn my ideas into the pictures. To make it you need to have trusted team which gets your thoughts, have similar estheticism and want to go into the same direction.
What advice would you give to someone who has just started doing photography? Is there anything you would like to have known when you began doing this art?
I still would love to hear some good advice. For sure you have to practice a lot, get inspired and find people who want to do it with you.
Which photographers influenced your creative thinking? Do you have any favorite ones you particularly admire?
Sure! I could mention a lot, but in my top, there are constantly Peter Lindberg, Annie Leibovitz, Mario Testino, Mert&Marcus, etc.
What does photography mean to you? Where do you see yourself a couple of years from now?
It’s amazing that my passion could become my work. It still gives me a lot of satisfaction and makes me happy that I can do what I like. Other little successes confirm my beliefs that it was a right decision.