I live in Burlington, Vermont, USA and I'm 34 years old. I was born and raised in Ukraine, and most of my family still lives in Kiev. By mysterious combination of occurrences I ended up in the US almost 11 years ago. I try to visit Ukraine as often as I can. My wife and I love to travel, it's good for one's overall balance.
My experience with photography started at an early age when I enrolled in local youth photo club. I think I was 10 at the time. Then I had a fall out for nearly 20 years, after which I rekindled the passion with a twist. I'm now working in a camera store and photo lab. Now that I think of it, initially inspiration comes from the photographs of my father and from early family photo albums. My father is formally educated old school artist, so he took classic landscapes and portraits. I was very inspired by his sense of composition.I've been also influenced by my brother who brought the thing to an experimental level.
After I quit a rather stressful job, I took some time off and started walking everywhere I would otherwise drive for errands. I started paying closer attention to surroundings that looked much different than from a prospective of a driver. I bought a digital SLR and napped away without really knowing what I was doing. Shortly after my DSLR for stolen and I took it as a sign to get back to film and the basics of photography. I took some classes and workshops, and finally equipped a small functional darkroom at home. I use both formats - analog and digital, although still use film way more. It's not that I don't like digital. It's just that I prefer the tactile way of creating images. Plus at the moment I'm pretty deep into an alternative process that takes all of my time. However, I've been experimenting with combining the two mediums lately. Nothing serious to show for it as of yet, but it it's in the works.
Mostly, I try to capture the mood of a given subject. I don't think I have preset or visualized approach. Later, when I examen the negative or DNG file, I start deciding what to bring forth in particular image.
The pictures I present were taken right here in Vermont in various locations. The people are my wife and our friends. The older gentleman is a refugee whom I was helping to resettle over here. Younger man is my friend Eugene Hutz of NYC Gypsy-Punk band Gogol Bordello (which I recommend to every human being). He is very photogenic, and I get to see him quite often. We played in the band together back in the day. Then there is a picture of a dishwasher man from one of the diners in the area. This one I didn't ask permission for, but couldn't resist taking it either. He didn't know that I took his picture. Large TLR cameras could be surprisingly inconspicuous, you see. Other people I had to practically lure into the set. Especially my wife. We have to bargain she and I.
What interests me in taking peoples photos are combination of features and particularities of surroundings. Emotions and timing. Luckily most reactions I got from them to date were very graceful. Except the man who didn't know I took his picture. He still doesn't know.