Day 2 of SnappedAway In-Depth Series with Johan Entchev (pictured above). We talk about his work and process and how he got interested in photography.
Can you briefly introduce yourself and your photography style to our readers?
My name is Johan Entchev. I’m 38 and I live in Helsinki Finland. My work is mainly black and white but lately I’ve also been experimenting with colour.
How did you get interested in photography? And why did you pick photography as a medium and a form of expression?
I’ve been interested in photography long before I even owned a camera. I don’t know why photography was something that interested me so much. I used to draw a lot when I was younger so I have always wanted to express myself visually. For me it’s a way of understanding life and kind of a visual diary about it. Pictures are notes about past and present. Photography offers a way of working through my emotions and experiences. It’s like capturing my emotions through others.
How did you learn how to shoot? And what did you find the most helpful source of information along this way?
When I started photography I took a short course where I learned basics about black and white film developing and printing techniques. Other than that I’ve learned on the way just by photographing a lot.
How about your photography style? Can you describe your journey to where you are right now?
I’m documenting my everyday life and my surroundings. My approach is totally subjective and an expression of my own self. I photograph my own mind.
Do you remember your first most inspiring photographer/ photo book/ exhibition in your life? And how about other photography masters?
No not really. When I started I wasn’t really interested in anything else than photographing. But later, work of photographers like Joseph Koudelka, Christer Strömholm, Daido Moriyama, Trent Parke, Anders Petersen, Saul Leiter and William Klein have been inspiring.
How do you work? Are you after a specific project or a single frame? Please share your work flow with us.
For me it´s about projects. My work flow is simple. I shoot all the time and everywhere, I photograph everything I’m drawn to. Then I have a couple of ideas and themes in my mind and with time, projects starts to develop and get their shape. All my ideas come from my own experiences and what’s emotionally close to me, so I don’t really have to look for new project ideas.
What is your favourite or memorable project/ photo you have worked on? Why? And also what is the project you will share with us?
I’ve worked on “Last Days” for a couple of years now and still continue with it. It´s personal project from my own childhood experiences. I don’t think that you necessarily need to know my reasons for making the work, but it would be great if the viewer feels I have revealed something about myself through it. “Last Days” is also the project I want to share with you.
What do you personally find challenging as a photographer?
Definitely editing projects and making pictures work together.
Do you have your favourite lens? Why this specific one? Favourite camera?
I use a lot of different cameras, film and digital, so I don’t really. Although, I usually like to use small cameras that I can carry around with me all the time. Right now I’m using Contax T2, Ricoh gr, Panasonic LX100 cameras.
What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a person starting as a photographer?
I´m not so great on giving advices but I think “work a lot” is always a good advice.
If you enjoyed reading this post check the previous blog entry with my introduction to Johan’s work and also stay with us for more of his photography.
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