Today we are proud to introduce you to Alex Greenshpun. Alex’s fine art nature photography has a uniquely magical quality to it. Her photography not only depicts the subject as how she saw it but also as how she connected with it. Below Alex describes her photography and point of view.
Photography entered my life about two years ago in quite an unexpected manner. I was taking long walks in nature with my dog, and being inspired by the beauty around me, started taking some shots with a smartphone. After a while, friends had convinced me to try taking photos with a DSLR. Although I’ve always felt a strong connection to the world of art in general and the visual arts in particular, and have long admired various works of photography masters, it had never occurred to me to try it myself. I even had an account on 500px.com for a couple of years before ever thinking of photographing on my own, just to see the works of all the talented artists.
Photography became a kind of meditation; it allows me to experience a sense of wonder and interconnectedness with everything. I feel that nature speaks in a silent language that most of us have sadly forgotten, and so I try to interpret this language into a kind of visual poetry; to remind people of the immense beauty that may even at this very moment lay in front of their own eyes.
I started shooting with a Canon 1000D and a kit lens, and some of my best works were taken with that equipment. Thus, I was quick to learn that better gear doesn’t necessarily make a better photographer. To this day I don’t own a tripod and have very little equipment. A couple of old 50mm lenses from the 60s, a Canon 100mm macro lens and the Canon 60D are my main companions.
Documenting nature in a way that a naturalist would is not what I seek to do, although I find it wonderful when others take photos like this. My intention is to reveal a hidden magic, something that I can see and feel in the subjects of my photos and wish to present that magic to everyone else. When I take a photo, a strong connection must first be established between me and the subject, this is something beyond thought, at the moment of this connection there can be no conceptualization – it simply is. This short moment of wonder and awe is the essential condition for taking a photo. Later, when I post-process an image, it will be in accordance with the vision I had at that moment.
Inspiration comes in various forms, and for me it’s always a matter of being quiet enough to hear its voice. When the moment comes to take the photo, it all comes down to a complete silence within – this silence is the very source of my expression. I wish for my images to connect the viewer, even for a short second, with their inner silence – the language of nature and beauty.
A poet uses words and metaphors to describe something that is beyond words, and this is how I try to use photography. Robert Frank once said: “When people look at my pictures I want them to feel the way they do when they want to read a line of a poem twice.” I can strongly relate to these words. Perhaps some people view photographs as just “shots”, but to me, each photo is a poem and each image has a soul.