“We keep this love in a photograph,
We made these memories for ourselves,
Where our eyes are never closing,
Hearts are never broken,
And time's forever frozen still”
“Photograph” Ed Sheeran
Born in USSR (family, background)
My Father was a serviceman, military engineer. My Mom was a student at a time at the faculty of economics in Railway Institute. She followed my Dad, as most Soviet women did, to their husbands’ place of service relocation. This time, it was Belogorsk, Amur region of Russian SFSR. So, when the spring is only in the calendar, but harsh winter is still in its reigns, an important family event happened, I was born on seventh day of third month in year 1985.
Regardless of “pleasures” of black caviare and brown bears, my childhood and life was always connected with a glorious city of Ancient Rus, my hometown Kyiv as family moved back here when I was 3 years old.
Dancing and Acting
My first acquaintance with dancing was amateur dance club “Polyet” (Flight). Folk dancing became my first passion and devotion. Between my 7-10 years of age, I was blessed with new friends, unforgettable impressions, dreams and hopes. If the dancing career was not achievable, at least a chance to find myself was in hand.
Unfortunately, the family lacked resources to continue attending the dancing club when I was 10.
Theatre was another saving boat for my adolescence dreams and drive for a form of self-realization in things close to my heart. Scenic art, speech technique, rhythm and dance are usual disciplines for young amateurs. Regardless of active participation in club’s activities, thoughts of dancing career were haunting me time from time. As it turned out, I was already out of age to even think of starting professional dancing.
What shall I do for life? It seems young people of all times are challenged with this question too early to understand themselves and what this world may offer…Yet, the choice was reasonable…demanded profession, intelligent, well paid, respectful and beneficial for society (regardless of its popular images:) Graduation from law faculty in Inter-regional Staff Management Academy in Kyiv, early work experience in bank sector, legal practice from secretary associate in one of biggest international law companies in Ukraine, legal services for hundreds of international and local clients.
I did not give up. Hoping not to lose the connection with things dear to me, I went for ballet classes in Kiev. I have enormous gratitude, respect and admiration for my dancing tutor, ballerina herself and gifted teacher. I devoted a lot of my free time to dance classes and yet, started to shoot…for fun, for pleasure. I was resisting classical dance for a long time as I had to stand on pointe in my early 20th (the pain and demand were fresh from child’s memories). Finally, I took a grip on myself and... classical dance became my main passion when I was 25 and still now.
Dancing with a camera
It seems that the camera found me, not vice versa. I took the professional camera with one intention – take pictures of ballet.
The distance between me and our famous National Opera of Ukraine was about 100 meters. My ballet classes as source of inspiration, photo hobby as desire to capture the beauty and office on the same street as theatre - have finally collided. “If I can’t achieve perfection in dancing, then I would build a new form of connection between ballet, dance, art of photography and my dreams.”
I was gifted with a chance to take photos of a ballet play in Theatre, it was “Le Corsaire”. After several photo sessions of ballet performances based on dancers’ invitations, I was invited to make professional photos for the National Opera of Ukraine itself. Later, ballet dancers honored me with opportunity to take their pictures in studios (and it was part of my dream). Then, things became clearer…regular photo sessions in studios, ballet play shooting, personal projects with ballet dancers, photo courses, trainings, web seminars, training in Photoshop, Lightroom etc. and a hard work to bring to perfection the pictures and moments of dancing. This became a platform for unique acquaintances, professional challenges and new ideas for future plans.
What might seem trivial, changes our lives forever…marriage, gift of my son, more worries, less sleep, more time at home, less limits for new experiments with photography etc. Still, a decision was taken quickly…”If I have more time at home and do not need to go to the office, then why not to pursue my new dream?” Newborn, weddings, parties, portraits, pregnancy, family, love story, reportage, commercial brand or product photo shootings. And, of course, my favorite photographic works - ballet dancing.
From now on, photo grew from just a hobby into a profession that brings all things together, interesting and talented people, unforgettable experience, new horizons and perspectives, acknowledgement and self-assurance, and you can do this for living and be close to your family.