Archive for the ‘Mladina’ Category
Two weeks ago I was commissioned by Mladina weekly to do the portrait of a writer Irvine Welsh, a Scottish novelist, playwright and short story writer. He is recognised for his novel Trainspotting. For the whole interview a termin of 30 minutes was reserved, which with other words mean, not time for photographer. I’ve stole 30 seconds for the portrait in the chair, before the interview and the rest was shot during interview. I used medium twin-lens camera Mamiya C330 and EFKE 100 film (I should use ISO 400, I know…). I’ve done also portraits on digital camera, just as a back-up, but those portraits were so boring, I’ll not waste Internet’s space with them. The concept of those portraits was the following. I took a straight normal portrait, I took all classic portraits that are usually done during interviews, then I said OK, let’s make few portraits that will smell like Trainspotting. What do you think?
Yesterday I had an exhibition opening of my creative portraits in Inštitut Jožef Stefan. With curator Tatjana Pregl Kobe, we decided to exhibit my portraits from 2006/07 on ground floor and on first floor my portraits from 2012/13. For Mladina weekly I’m making every week at least one creative portrait of a creative person and although I love making this work, it’s no easy walk, I tell you! I remember that many times I woke up in the middle of the night, because I didn’t have the concept how to do a portrait later the day. Or I was dreaming about it. Nevertheless it’s such a nice feeling to view back on your work and you know it was worth the pain, sweat and stress. And most importantly it’s still worth to continue. Last year I switched my style of portrait photography from vibrant color playful portraits (LINK) to collodion portraits (LINK). I had a feeling that I had to move on. The fact that everybody liked my wicked humor and saturated colors, was just another reason to reinvent my style before going stale. And the change was not easy or comfortable whereas discrete! From digital camera with studio lights (link to the making of video) to old view camera on a tripod and with darkroom. Also the layout of the rubric changed completely. In year 2006 the portrait was published on about 1/3 of a page and now the rubric is published as a spread with a serious text about the person being portrayed. HERE is the link from national TV.
What am I trying to say. Two things. I’m proud on this body of work. And I feel an urge that I want some more of photography. I’m really obsessed! I feel very clearly that I’m on tipping point of my career. I crossed the point of no return.
What has changed? I will not describe my feelings, just actions and then you’ll get the picture.
1) Last week I quit my job as a photojournalist. I will still do gladly portraits for my Mladina weekly magazine, but I can not afford to waste my life on news photographs that have expiry date faster then diaria! I really lost all my interest in politics. Totally. Gone…
2) Revival of skylight Studio Pelikan is one the things I feel so connected with. I feel that although we’re running on no-budget and making small tiny steps, the direction is correct and we just need to continue
3) I’m receiving a huge support in my quest in Alternative photography from all sides. From different continents even!
4) I’m taking part of the workshop of Klavdij Sluban and although I participates at workshops of really famous photographers like Saudek, Oliviero Toscani, Ralph Gibson, Martin Parr, Stephen Gill, Paul Graham, Joel Peter Witkin, Duane Michals, and who knows who have I forgot, Klavdij Sluban is the best mentor. Perhaps I’m taking part in his workshop in a particular moment of my life, but he opened many windows to me and my photography! He does magic. I sensed how he is doing it. I can’t do it yet on his level, but I understood the principle, I mapped the path I need to take. Don’t believe me? You will see the results in few months.
5) Invitation for exhibitions are raining! First one opened yesterday. Next one is in my town of Novo mesto in April. In May I have an exhibition in Krakow / Poland and then in Novi Sad / Serbia. In November I’m having a solo show in the best photography gallery in Ljubljana / Slovenia and also our workshop group under Klavdij Sluban will exhibit in Novo mesto / Slovenia.
6) I’m selling prints. I know, I know, I’m selling it in very unorthodox way, for a small price, but I don’t care. I’m worker, an artist, but I’m definitely not a salles man. I prefer to get 50 EUR now, then 5000EUR when I’ll be a retired old fart!
Last but not least, let me tell you an anecdote. I felt like this before. It was after I’ve done all the exams at London College of Printing and I was chatting with my mentor. I’ve told him how I feel so strongly that my life will change dramatically. I’ve described his how I have all this knowledge that I’ve gained and now it’s the moment when I will confront it with real life, hitting it hard, like a tsunami. Literally few hours later my girlfriend called me and told me she is pregnant
In Friday’s issue of Mladina weekly there will be an article about my portraits and I’ve made this self-portrait today with the help of my wife Alenka Peterlin. The inspiration for the portrait was a couple. First I’ve heard many times, that in wetplate technique I look like a native American, second inspiration was to include an element of exploration and third was that it should look raw.
That’s my aim in photography to explore, search and learn. I know I’m doing it in primitive, raw way, but that’s exactly me, having a hell of a good time. Photography is for me what for some people religion is. A mean to become a better man, to transcend boundaries that were set, to change the world. I hope this (blind) faith is captured in the image
Technical side: It was pretty cold, like -2C and to work at this temperature I’m using a normal developer, I’m just developing longer. Usually about 30-35seconds. I extend also sensibilisation of a plate from usual 3 minutes to 5 minutes. And that all there is. Sometimes I add two drops of nitric acid in 100ml of developer, but that’s not so important at working bellow 0C. It was a lot of light so the exposure was 3sec, f/11. This portrait was taken with Kodak Folding Brownie 3A from year about 1905.
I couldn’t have done the portrait without my lovely wife Alenka Peterlin, she is also a photographer. Thank you
You can see this and many other of my creative portraits on the exhibition in the gallery of Institut Jozef Stefan. Opening Monday 18.2.2013 at 18.00.
Last week I was commissioned to do a portrait of painters duo White Ice Cream. I’ve done a fantastic portrait of them two years ago and I was reluctant to do another portrait, but a commission is a commission and they are great blocks, so I was very excited to see what we will as their portrait. We were talking and we agreed that we will repeat the brick pattern from their cloths that were an art piece. We tried to make a snowman, but in Ljubljana there was no snow anymore so we went to Krvavec mountain, but snow there was too dry, too frozen, so we made this sort of characters. My idea was that they should go full monty and with one hand cover their “pride” and in the other hand they would hold an ice cream, but they were not up for it. We had a good laugh once again
I was already blogging Read the rest of this entry »
Peter Movrin is one of the most prosperous and highly rewarded young fashion designer. On HIS SITE it states: “Peter Movrin creates dark knight inspired menswear – long laser cut leather coats, paired with silk underskirts, grey tone raw leather pieces and accessorised with knitted head pieces and balaclavas in a modern attack on medieval attire.”
Mladina weekly assigned me to make his portrait and when I saw his site and video attached bellow, I knew wet plate collodion technique is destined for his portrait. We made the portrait is his shop in downtown of Ljubljana. I’ve illuminated him with Balcar Source 6400 studio flashes, which can be used as a synonym of light burst (6400Ws) that can compare with a nuclear explosion. I’ve scan the plate, then I scratched it with a brush paper and hold it above a flame, so the glass plate broke. Then I scanned it again and in Lightroom I added an effect of vigneting and the result is here! I hope you like it. Gregor Cokan was assisting me.
When I made this portrait I thought this is it! I will use Wet Plate technique and combine it with every tool there is either that’s analog or digital. Wet Plate photographers are often limiting them selves only to the tools that were available in 19th Century even to that extent that they don’t want to scan a plate because they scrutiny it or something like. I disagree. I consider 19th Century photographers a wizards of their own time. They were building their own equipment, mixing their own chemicals and mastering aesthetics of new media. I consider them as intellectuals that were open to wide range of knowledge and were not limiting them selves and this paradigm I like. I thought I figure all out for my next creative portraits! The conceptual and aesthetic approach, chemical part of this technology, illumination and so on.
BUT! (there is a but in every decision isn’t). But yesterday I was trying to make another portrait for next issue of Mladina, but it didn’t work. I mean I’ve made tests and everything was fine, but then people were late and there was no ambient light anymore. I had to make a set up with flashes and I tried to do their portrait without a tests, but in a rush, wet-plate does not work. After one hour I admitted my defeat and was forced to make a digital portrait.
I came to another personal resolution. I will use this technique only if I will have a clear concept and not trying to use it for every portrait in Mladina weekly magazine. It’s just to stressful, not to mention that I need an hour of pre-preparation before the shoot and even then it’s not certain that it’ll work. I mean I have a strong portfolio with my digital portraits, so no worries about the quality.
Peter Movrin’s fashion:
Aleksij Kobal is one of my favourite Slovenian painters and I was very happy to portray him again. Two years ago I portrayed him behind a large glass window (link). We discussed about possible scenarios for the portrait and he suggested to take me to his favorite place on the suburb of Ljubljana. In his work he’s applying modernistic urban architecture that are creating his dreamscape, so I wanted to catch this feeling in my portrait of him. After the main portrait I’ve made few more shots with my Mamiya C330. I like them just as much, if not more. I love the last frame. The rectangular it resembles so much to the monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Not to mention this diffused northern light after sun set. Eternal beauty.
In the beginning of this year 2012, I borrowed a large format camera Linhof Technika and soon I fall in love in this kind of work. I decided I want to buy one and in April I bought two 4×5″ cameras. HERE is a link to the post. My first resolution was to shoot about 50 films and make every possible mistake that you can do with large format camera. I was photographing my children, but not as much as I wanted to, so I decided I’ll make portraits of trees. And not just any kind of trees, only an apple trees. I’m publishing just few of them, since I never bothered to scan them all.
This project started as a joke, as a topic that is easy accessible, doesn’t complain and gives you a good excuse for a bike ride, but with a surprise I learned that there is a potential in this topic. Every tree is different, of course, but if you look closely, you see that a tree is reflecting it’s owner’s personality. I’ve photographed neglected trees, farm apple trees, neat garden apple trees and so on. One apple tree looked like a bush. A farmer cut it above it’s roots, but tree didn’t die and now it looks like a mess. I didn’t continue with this project, because I realized that black and white technique is totally inappropriate. It should be either in full color to emphasize the tree and not a photographer or in Wet Plate Collodion technique to emphasize the photographer. By the end of the weekend I’ve learned more about people then about apple trees.
The purpose of this exercise was to establish a routine in working with large format camera and it was a success. Now it’s August and I’ve shot more then 200 plan films and I feel very comfortable with the camera and it’s workflow.
I’ve used my ShenHao 4×5″ camera for my work as a photojournalist. For weekly magazine Mladina I do portraits that accompany interviews in the magazine. Here are few examples:
Last week I had super fever with body temperature up to 39,6C and I couldn’t go to Ljubljana and make a portrait for Mladina. I asked a student of mine Darko Sintič to take a portrait and I explained him what I need. I took his images and chop them into pieces and polaroids from them. I used poladroid software. After I finished with post-process I was in a state of high fever dreaming whole night this images. I realized I should use dropshadow on polaroids and probably I should use some sort of texture for background. I wasn’t really sure if it’s OK, but now, with time distance I’m satisfied with the result. Ladies and Gentleman, Lucija Stepančič, a painter and a writer.
PS: I’m healthy now. Today I’ve carefully jogged few kilometers and I’m great. Great feeling, great energy!
Last week I had to make an advertisement for Mladina’s new T-shirt with a red star. Lately in the peak of recession when Slovenia is mentioned to be the sixth EU country that will need to ask for financial help, Prime Minister Janša started his campaign to trivialize National Liberation Front (Red star) and his right wing colleagues are openly glorifying Hitler’s collaborators Domobranci. Mladina decided to start selling the T-shirts with red star and trusted me to make a good picture for their campaign. My first idea was to go to Dolenjski muzej and on the exhibition dedicated to partisan resistance find some appropriate angle around guns. But guns were all in show windows and that was not possible. I decided I’ll make a very simple image and use the wall with names of over 3000 fallen partisans, activists and victims of o fascistic violence. I’m really happy that this photograph is not only opposing stupid remarks that Slovene Home Guard (Domobranci) soldiers who pledged their service to Hitler and were capturing allied pilots and handing them to SS, were fighting for democracy, but also reminding what red star really represents in history. If you want to buy one HERE is the link.
Prejšen teden sem naredil reklamno fotografijo za Mladinino novo mikico z rdečo zvezdo. KOt veste, na višku recesije, ko je Slovenija omenjana kot potencaialno šesta država, ki bo prisiljena prostiti EU za finančno pomoč, je Premier Janša začel svojo kampanijo za razvrednotenje pomena narodno osvobodilnega boja in simbola rdeče zvezde. Kot veste, so janševci začeli na glas propagirati hitlerjance in Mladina se je odločila, da naredi mikico z rdečo zvezdo. Meni so zaupali, da naredim fotografijo, ki bo uporabljena za oglase. Moja prva ideja je bila, da bi šel v Dolenjski muzej in na razstavi NOB našel nek zorni kot kjer bi lahko posnel mikico in orožje. Na mojo žalost je bilo vse atraktivno orožje v izložbi, ki je nisem mogel odpreti, tako sem se odločil, da naredim popolnoma enostavno fotko, ob spominski plošči, kjer so imena padlih partizanov, aktivistov in drugih žrtev okupatorskega nasilja. Na ta način fotografija nasprotuje fiktivni ideji, da so se hitlerjanci borili za demokracijo, ampak tudi izpostavlja kaj je rdeča zvezda resnično pomenila ljudem!
Če jo hočete naročiti, je tu POVEZAVA do nje.