Ukranian photographer Tetiana has all the correct ingredients for successful photography. Specialising in images of delicious looking food she also dabbles in still life photography and her portfolio is a nod to current popular themes which she accredits to following market trends. We spoke to her in more detail about how she got into the industry, the importance of working only when in a happy mindset and why she doesn’t have one favourite image.
FO: Can you introduce yourself, where you’re based and explain a bit your journey into how you started selling your photos on Fotolia?
Tetiana: I was born and live in Ukraine, in a small town near Kiev. Since my childhood, I loved to draw and tinker around with things using my hands. Despite the fact that I studied economics and marketing, my passion for creativity led me to the fact that in the end I became a graphic designer.
Whilst working as designer in 2011, I came across an article on the internet about microstock. At that time, becoming a professional photographer was my biggest dream. I loved photography very much and thought that I was doing pretty well, plus I had experience as a retoucher and colour corrector. So I bought my first professional camera and decided to try and shoot stock photos. Fotolia was one of the first sites where I first sold my images. Frankly it wasn’t super successful at first but after 3 years and a lot of the footage, I learned to shoot a lot better.
FO: How would you describe your photographic style? What has influenced and shaped it?
Tetiana: My style of photography, I’m unsure as to what it can be called. First of all, they are predominantly food photos. But occasionally I take photos of people and animals, and even nature. I do not like to dwell on one thing in particular. I try to test myself in different genres. There are some amazing food photographers who have influenced and shaped my style: looking at their pictures, I want to immediately go to the kitchen to cook, take pictures, and then eat what I’ve cooked!
FO:What is it about your photos that has made them so popular in your opinion?
Tetiana: I think the secret to successful photography is that it should first of all look like a photographer took it. Although, of course, technical performance (correct composition, good colour, lighting and post-processing) is important. Well, we should not forget about the commercial value of the photo related to the field of application. Stock photographers must not only be able to shoot beautifully, but also to understand where his work can be applied. A little marketing is needed to track the needs of the market stock photography.
FO: What, in your view, are the key ingredients to creating a fantastic photograph?
Tetiana: The key ingredients to a good photograph, it seems to me, are having an idea in the mind of the photographer: correct lighting and a good mood. A good mood – it’s important. With a bad mood, when I’m tired or upset, good pictures cannot be obtained.
FO: What are you favourite photos from your Fotolia portfolio and why?
Tetiana: My favourite photos – they are constantly changing. When a picture is only just taken, I may be obsessed with it. But time passes and I may start to find flaws in it, re-consider them in further work and new pictures I will like as a result more than the old.
FO: What is your favourite piece of photographic equipment that you use?
Tetiana: To date, I can not imagine my life without my favourite lens. This macro lens from the company Nikon. With it my pictures look just great. It is ideally suited to me and my work.
FO: Do you prepare all the dishes in your photos or do you use a food stylist?
Tetiana: I have never used the services of a food stylist. I love to cook and do it myself. All the dishes in my pictures are prepared by myself.