Photographer: Ekaterina Piskunova @piskunova.katy Model: Maka @maka4you @@tsunamiagency Wardrobe Stylist: Alisa Rain @alisarain_style Fashion Designer: Tali Rutman @greedyrutman Makeup Artist: Nastya Rosenberg @wacci_y
Ekaterina, could you please briefly introduce yourself, and tell us about your first encounter with photography? Who has influenced you to start taking photographs?
I have always known my own way of beauty. By my first profession, I am an animator. I have a degree in Art and have worked as a motion designer on television for many years. Perhaps It greatly simplified my perception of photography. My first connection with this field was at my first full-time job. My mentor had a studio room in our office. So, I observed him working with new face models every day. I found it interesting how girls of my age were becoming professional models. Those days I decided to buy my first camera.
From your point of view, what are the most difficult aspects of professional fashion photography?
I think the most difficult aspect is to choose what kind of photographer you gonna to be.
The person who works to receive salary only or photographer who tries to express something important with the instrument you are going to work with. As it is known, every cover in the most famous magazines is the huge amount of people`s work. As a rule, other professionals prefer to work on ideas they have to share. So you always think about the context. Trying to find how to show something ugly in a beautiful way Oil catastrophe, garbage problems, race wars.
As the expert you are, what are the unique features of this kind of photography and the keys to master it?
So firstly you have to find your team. People with the same vision as yours.
You have to be an influencer for them. Also you have to trust your team.
Because Only together you can create something special. Moreover, I try to shoot a lot of personal projects. It helps to find and to keep perfect balance between parts of our team.
In your opinion, how beauty is perceived at the present age?
What does photography mean to you personally and what really makes a woman beautiful?
As for me all people are beautiful. I like the current where we stop using retouche and show faces without masks. But I think being neat makes all women pretty.
I often see models who come to photo shoots and they are wearing wrinkled clothes without any make-up or with dirty hair.
But when stylists iron their dresses and make nude make-up and hairstyle they become beautiful swans.
What type of models do you prefer to shoot with? Why?
I love strange faces models. Bold heads. Not canon perfect. Maybe I will try to show that beauty is around us in such way.
Are there any other photographers you look up? Who?
Usually I looking for inspiration in cinema and fin art. I like Hoyte van Hoytema and Paul Laufer. They create fantastic atmosphere in their movies. But I also like Terry Richardson, Annie Leibovitz, Mario Sorrenti, Nick Knight, Steve McCurry. I like there works and see how they use light composition and emotions. It’s amazing.
You are going about conducting a photo shoot, could you take us through the typical planning process for your images?
So, first of all, it is the main idea. I prefer to find some theme which I am interested in. Then I make references searching clothes, make up, location, models, and inspiring pictures. The next step is to create a simple mood board for my team which I also send to the agency for finding the perfect model for my idea.
Furthermore I write a script to model what she is going to do at this location. How she feels, how she gonna move. After that, I send all my developments to my team. They can add something and we prepare everything. I also plan ahead the light and color of future shots. So in studio, i already know how I will shoot.
In addition to being sharp and well lit, your photos are beautifully edited. What is your retouching/production philosophy?
I use dodge and burn technics to save natural skin texture. I don't like wax faces and too much smooth. But I like color experiments. Colors can change everything for me.
What would be your tips/advice to models looking to expand their portfolio?
To Change the way they pose. I love Coco Rocha and her model camp. I wish all models would study her lessons.
So I like when the model is a little bit an actress too. I know the new models work in China the first year and they make the same poses every day. But for high fashion, your face has to show some emotions.
What projects are you working on next, and what are your goals for the future?
I have an idea to make political+fashion photos. In our country, we have so many political, ecological and social topics I intend to try to mix them in the means of fashion industry and express my own opinion to all those situations. I am a little bit afraid to do it because you can't say something bad about the government in our country. But I will try.
Where can we see more of your works and get connected with you?
You can find more works on my Instagram and my personal website will be active soon.