To discover more about the living life behind a lens we started portrait series featuring interviews with 500px photographers. This week’s feature is with Xenia Lerta, hobbyist food photographer currently residing in Bratislava, Slovakia. Her delicious photographs, clever diptychs, and beautiful colour aesthetic leave the viewer starving for more.
Tell us about your photographic journey.
It all started long before I held a camera. I have always felt this attraction to visual arts, be it fashion magazines, history of photography, painting and drawing or works of well known photographers. I used to paint myself, but it never occurred to me that I would ever be so fascinated and engulfed with the photographic process.
Several years ago my husband got me a Nikon D90 for which I didn’t care for at that time as I already had a point-and-shoot camera and was happy with it. I didn’t touch that Nikon D90 camera for a long time, it seemed too complex and unnecessary. When we lived in Holland my sister came for a visit and that visit has changed it all. She has asked me to take some good photos for an online social network and I did. I took out the D90, took some shots, and immediately saw the difference in quality. That’s when I became really interested with DSLR, photography and wanted to find out more.
My journey didn’t end there, it is ongoing and I am still learning. I always welcome constructive criticism and would love to learn as much as I can.
Why food photography?
My son is the one who moved into the direction of still life and food photography. Every time he saw me photograph he would often try to add new objects to my shoots, by bringing candy and toys along. That’s when I realized that such objects as candies and toys aren’t often photographed, and could potentially look great and attract viewers’ attention.
I started to look for a style in which to capture these objects, and I decided that minimalism and duality work best. Trying to present the object in such a way that it would immediately become desired.
What is your studio setup and what equipment do you use?
My studio is my kitchen and its window. My lighting equipment is the sun. And my photo equipment is Nikon D90 camera with 50mm 1.8 and 70-200 2.8 lenses.
How do you market your work?
I don’t know if photography will ever become my full time occupation, for now it’s just a hobby. And on occasion I shoot for my friend’s online magazine. For now I use photo sites and social network sites to promote my work. Lately I’ve been thinking of venturing into stock photography.
What is the source of your inspiration?
I constantly work on my photo skills and style, getting inspired by well known photographers and artists. To get better acquainted with their style I learn from documentaries, historical movies, and biographies about them.
There are many photographers who inspire me, I will share a few with you: Henri Cartier-Bresson, Helmut Newton, Albert Watson, Robert Doisneau and Josef Sudek.
What advice would you give to beginner photographers?
A lot of people have cameras nowadays, but just because one has a camera it doesn’t automatically make one a photographer. I would recommend to all aspiring photographers one thing, and that is to be original. Don’t try to copy anyone, instead be yourself — embedding your character and individually into your photographs. Don’t be afraid of experiments, photograph as often as you can, listen to worthy advice and ignore those who dislike your work. Treat your craft with care and respect it deserves and I’m sure you’ll create something unusual and unforgettable.
Tell us 5 things about you, which would introduce us to the person behind the lens.
Thanks Xenia for sharing your inspiring photographs and thank you for reading! You can follow Xsenia on 500px and see her favourite photographs by visiting her profile page. Buy Xenia's photos as HD downloads or canvas prints on her Store page.
Let us know in the comments below if you have questions, feedback or suggestions. We would love to hear your ideas.
Tim Sklyarov is a designer, photographer and creative director residing in the most populous city in the United States – New York City. While the usual choice of commuting in NYC is by subway, taxi or car Tim prefers his road bike. Traveling to and from work every day on a bike, he documented his daily trips and encounters in 2001. We’d like to share with you his NYC bike trips to work captured from an unusual angle. Watch out for tourists, jwalkers, pedestrians jumping from behind parked cars and other road hazards.
To see the full documentary of Tim’s road bike city adventures visit his website. Want to add Tim to friends and follow his photographs? Then check out Tim's 500px page.
Thanks for reading! Our blog is a place to promote 500px photographers and their brilliant photos. Every week we do a story post featuring one photo or photo series and the backstory of those images. This could be your story, email us email@example.com and let us know about yourself and your work.
Iceland is every photographer’s dream. Though it may be thousands of kilometers away we’d like to invite you to experience Iceland right now with Joe Capra’s video “Scenes From Niceland”. We highly recommend to view it fullscreen and in HD. It is that good.
Joe has shot this entire video on Canon 5D mark II camera while on a 17 day solo trip. He traveled around the entire island shooting almost 24 hours, sleeping in a car, and eating whatever he had available at the time. In Joe’s words: “During my days shooting in Iceland I shot 38,000 images, travelled some 2900 miles, and saw some of the most amazing, beautiful, and indescribable landscapes on the planet. Iceland is absolutely one of the most beautiful and unusual places you could ever imagine. Especially during the Midnight Sun when the quality of light hitting the landscape is very unusual, and very spectacular.”
Visit Joe Capra’s 500px page to follow his photo work, add him to friends and check photos for sale. To continue your journey of inspiring videos look up previously curated features: Mission 26 The Big Endeavour, Warsaw: The People, EuroLapse, City Rising, Love, and Watching The Night Sky.
We think that photographers make great videographers. Do you have a video that you’d like to share or you are in a process of planning a shoot? Let us know and get featured on our blog, email us firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below. We are open to your ideas and collaborations.
Today we'd like to introduce you to Nicholas Lau, photographer from London, UK. Nicholas started photography in April of 2009 while studying for accounting exams and hasn’t stopped photographing since. His love and dedication to the craft imprints into his work, showing through every photo with mild colours, soft focus and gentle light.
Did you know that Nicholas shoots with Canon 5D Mark II favouring 35mm 1.4 lens? If you’d like to get to know Nicholas Lau better, follow his work and see more of his photos visit his 500px page.
Thanks for reading! Our blog is a place to promote 500px photographers and their brilliant photos. Every week we do a mini feature introducing you to a photographer from 500px community and his/her body of work. This could be you, email us email@example.com and let us know about yourself and your work.