original online course
on photography
by jurij treskow
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Focus on my personal journey as a photographer. You will learn about the development of my interest in photography and the challenges and opportunities I encountered along the way. The impact of the decisions I made and their consequences.

First photo shoots and exploring personal style, entering the fashion industry, initial magazine features and commercial projects. Collaborations with model and photo agencies.

How different cities influenced my art and worldview.

This picture was taken by my grandfather in Polotsk, Belarus when I was around 3 years old.

During the 70s and 80s, it was common for people to have a deep interest in photography, including my grandfather, who, despite serving in the military, shared this passion.

He had a large collection of various cameras at home and often took pictures of his family, friends, and anything else that interested him. Over time, this became a photographic diary of his life.

I still remember the red light coming from the bathroom where he developed the films himself. As a child, it was such a mesmerizing and magical experience for me.

Thanks to my grandfather, we now have countless photos in our family archives. These images still play an important role in our lives, helping us to preserve memories of the past and remember our friends and relatives and our lives back then.

Most of the photos were in black and white, which may be one reason why I developed a special affinity for black and white photography. Who knows!
Take a moment to recall and remind yourself of your initial motivations and interest in photography.

How did you first become interested in photography? What inspired and motivated you? Reflect on your initial impressions and emotions when you started pursuing photography. What events, people, other photographers' works, or photographic projects sparked your interest and desire to try your hand at this art form?

Allocate some time for reflection and jot down your thoughts.

The purpose is to help you recall your initial motivations and inspiration for photography, to understand and evaluate your creative journey, as well as reignite the initial flame and passion that propelled you into this captivating exploratory and creative endeavor.

At the beginning, art didn't play a significant role in my life. I had no plans to become a photographer, nor did I consider creativity as a source of income. My attention was focused on studying chemistry and mathematics in high school, first in Brest and then in a gymnasium after I moved to Germany. Later, I enrolled in the economics faculty, and for the first two years, I diligently pursued my studies at the university.

The first spark came in the gymnasium during an art lesson, where the topic was photography. Over the course of a few weeks, we learned the basics of photography, took pictures on film, and in the end, we had to present a collage made from our photographs.

I was captivated by the process of shooting on film, developing it in the school lab, and creating photo collages. Although the film processing was slow and labor-intensive, I remembered how my grandfather used to do the same when I was a very young child. However, the true magic of film photography didn't fully unfold for me at that time.

Nevertheless, I completed my project - a collage that brought together photographs depicting various states and manifestations of nature, highlighting the interconnectedness of everything in the natural world.

When I presented my work in class, my teacher was very impressed with the idea and its execution. This positive feedback gave me the motivation to continue taking photos and see what would come out of it.

Olga was one of the first professional models I worked with in Brest, and she later became my mentor in fashion photography.

During our photo shoots in Brest, she would come prepared with a variety of outfits, different makeup and hair ideas, and even location suggestions that would complement each look. She also had a collection of references and mood boards for lighting, poses, and different compositions. This level of preparation was new to me.

After our shoots, Olga would sit down with me and help me with the final selection of images. She explained the basics of fashion photography and stressed the importance of learning how to shoot clothes and how to work with and direct models.

With her guidance, my photographs improved significantly.

She also introduced me to various fashion magazines and photographers to study, which encouraged me to take photography more seriously and to conduct more research on photography and fashion in general.

From this encounter I understood that it's one of the key is to find someone who knows their stuff and has experience in the areas you want to grow in. They should also be cool with sharing their knowledge, giving you pointers, and giving you feedback if even it could hurt.
In 2007, I did my first photoshoot with a model named Helena. I found her profile on the model-kartei website and asked if she would be interested in a collaborative shoot. Helena was already an experienced model with an excellent portfolio.

A few days after I sent her a mood board with some ideas, she came to Freiburg. I was incredibly excited about the upcoming shoot. Helena's posing skills, ability to transform, and change moods inspired me throughout the five-hour session, although it felt like only five minutes had passed.

As I reviewed the photos we took during the shoot, I noticed something new and exciting emerging in my images - a new style, the first glimpses of "femme fatale" that I later discovered and developed over the years.

The photos showcased a woman who was strong, confident, and played with her sensuality in the frame. At that time, I didn't fully grasp the significance of this breakthrough, but today, looking back at these shots, I see how it became a pivotal moment in my career and the development of my own vision and style.
Define, in your opinion, what are the signs and characteristics of an excellent photographer.

Create a list of these indicators and justify each one. Reflect on aspects such as composition, use of light, ability to convey emotions and stories, technical proficiency, originality, willingness to experiment, the ability to find beauty in simple things, and any other aspect you believe is important for an excellent photographer.

Pay attention to examples of photographers' works that, in your opinion, demonstrate these signs. Describe why their work inspires you and why you consider them to be excellent photographers.

The goal of this task is to help students reflect on the essence of an excellent photographer and identify the qualities and skills that need to be developed to reach that level. It will also help students develop their critical eye for photography and enhance their appreciation for high-quality work, which is an important aspect of their professional growth in photography.
I continued to organize new photo shoots primarily through web platforms for amateur models. In Berlin, I had more model options available to me than I did in Freiburg and Brest.

I also reached out to some modeling agencies in Berlin to arrange shoots with their models. However, the agencies would only send me new faces from their packages.

My next step was to assemble teams. I conducted online research for stylists, makeup artists, and hairdressers in Berlin. I would review their portfolios on their websites, then send messages to the selected artists to discuss collaborating together. I would share mood boards and ideas for potential photo shoots. Not all artists responded to my requests.

After a few months, I was able to build my first organized teams. We would discuss ideas for our photo shoots, select locations, and create mood boards. Stylists would bring outfits, and makeup and hair artists would work on the models' looks. This collaboration transformed my photos, making them appear more like fashion shots and more sophisticated.

I asked many questions about the fashion industry, such as how to start working for magazines, shoot campaigns, and acquire models from modeling agencies. I let my curiosity guide me.
"Vsya Evropa" was a fashion publication in Berlin targeting Russian-speaking readers with high income.

I managed to arrange a meeting with the magazine's editorial team. I presented my portfolio, consisting of my best works at that time, which caught the interest of the editor-in-chief. She offered me the opportunity to shoot backstage during their next editorial session. Although I had initially expected to do my own photo shoot for them, I agreed to the offer, aiming to strengthen connections and learn more about the process.

On the day of the shoot, I got to meet the entire team and the photographer who had flown in specifically from Israel. We were working with a well-known model from one of the leading modeling agencies in Berlin.

I was deeply intrigued by how the photographer organized the creative process, directed poses, handled lighting, and managed the team. I also wanted to learn about camera settings, equipment used, and how ideas were communicated and discussed with the magazine's editorial team.

Although my main task was to capture backstage moments, I also took several photos of the model in different poses and outfits. As a result, in some of my photographs, the model is not looking directly at my camera but rather at the main photographer.

A few days after the shoot, I sent all the photos from the session, including some of my favorite shots of the model, to the editor-in-chief. To my surprise, they decided to include some of my photographs in the print edition as they were not particularly impressed with the other photographer's images. I couldn't imagine how the other photographer must have felt, but it was not my problem or fault.

A month later, I bought my first printed editorial from a bookstore and sent a copy to my parents. Another task accomplished!
Today, I can attribute my photography's dark period to my inadequate technical skills in handling digital cameras and equipment. It was easier to create eerie and sometimes scary images, to break rules and challenge conventions.

Many photographers undergo this phase in their career, just as beginners painting or playing an instrument create hectic brush strokes or press all keys on an instrument they do not know how to play. These creations have a special value to them.

I did not study instructions, but instead played with the settings on my camera and lighting equipment to achieve some unusual and captivating effects. I worked with amateur models who often posed awkwardly, and I too did not know much about posing and directing models. I lacked an understanding of how to materialize my ideas through model direction.

The Berlin of that time also had an energy that was rather gloomy, and it seeped into my photography.

In the future, the cities I lived in would significantly influence my photography. Additionally, the work of photographer Chadwick Tyler, while not necessarily my favourite, certainly elicited a reaction from me with its raw, dark, and even terrifying images.

I was checking out some interviews with photographer Chadwick Tyler and he was describing his style. He said that he tends to focus on capturing the energy and presence of his subjects, rather than trying to create some kind of perfect or idealized image. Tyler also mentioned that he's really drawn to the idea of creating images that have a bit of a "timeless" quality to them, so that they don't feel too stuck in one particular moment or era. Overall, it seems like his approach is very much about tapping into his own intuition and creativity, rather than getting too bogged down in trying to follow any particular rules or techniques.

I did some model tests in Moscow and got paid for them. Therefore, my initial plan was to make appointments at model agencies in Paris so that I could shoot paid tests for them.

I made a list of all the modeling agencies in Paris and sent them emails. The owner of Avant gave me direct contacts for some bookers at the agencies.

To my surprise, most of the agencies were interested in meeting with me.

My first appointment was at Elite Paris, one of the best and well-known agencies in the world. I was quite nervous before entering their huge office at Avenue Montaigne.

I didn't have a proper portfolio for my first meetings. Instead, I printed about a hundred photographs from my shoots in Moscow and Berlin, each in a postcard size (10x15cm).

They looked through all the images and asked some of their colleagues to join us. They were not sure what to do with me. Some of them told me I should continue with my artistic work and not do any testing. However, I needed money if I wanted to stay in Paris, and I didn't know how to earn money otherwise.

Most of the modeling agencies in Paris were paying 150 euros for tests, with the first test being free. If they were satisfied with the results, then they were ready to pay.
During my first years in Paris, I spent a lot of time in Minsk and Moscow, working on both artistic and personal projects. For my shoots, I moved away from traditional model tests and opted for crazy styling and non-traditional makeup, which added an exciting element to my work.

In Moscow, I had the advantage of being from Paris, which allowed me to work with some amazing teams. Prior to my arrival in Moscow, I would email stylists to organize shoots and ensure everything was in place.

After production and editing were also important aspects of my work, where I would experiment with new tools in photoshop to make my photographs look even more stunning.
Model tests had a significant impact on the evolution of my photography.

As the money from model tests was my primary source of income, I had to shoot frequently and deliver high-quality results in order to earn a living. Initially, I was paid 150 euros for each test, which was barely enough to sustain an expensive life in Paris.

However, as time went on, I became more familiar with the requirements and expectations of the agencies, and I adapted my approach accordingly.

Typically, the agencies would select three to five photos from each test for use in their portfolios, with a focus on portraits and full-body shots that showcased the model's physique.

At that time in Paris, I was one of the few Russian-speaking photographers, and unlike many of my compatriots who followed in my footsteps, I was able to work with model agencies on an official basis and issue invoices for my services. As a German resident, I had all the necessary tax documents in order.
For me personally, this cover for Marie Claire Magazine is one of my most impressive commercial covers. The strong portrait of the model and the design of the cover look very striking and vibrant.

However, despite all its qualities, this cover was not selected for publication in this particular issue...

A few weeks after the photoshoot, the magazine contacted me to inform that they needed to replace the image on the cover. The reason was related to a change in the model's outfit. They had to replace the Chanel dress with Dior. And in this situation, nothing could be done. It shows how important advertisers are and how magazines make money.

Of course, I was a bit disappointed. I wanted this cover to be published because it was stunning. The model, her agency, and the entire team working on the shoot were also very disappointed. But sometimes these things happen, and we must keep moving forward.
Part 1.

Shortly before my move to New York, Vincent decided to launch a photo agency that would represent artists such as photographers, stylists, makeup artists, and hair stylists. He invited me to join the agency, and I was thrilled to be part of this exciting project. Finally, I had an agency in Paris that could help me advance in photography and take my career to the next level.

Vincent's partner, Nico, who is a casting director, was instrumental in organizing my photos and creating my professional portfolio to showcase to potential clients. Nico also helped me arrange several meetings with agencies representing stylists. It was important to showcase my work, receive feedback, and make new contacts for future collaborations to attract new clients and projects.

Our main goal was to secure more editorial shoots in magazines and further promote and develop my photography style. The next step was to obtain commercial assignments, campaigns, and look books. Meetings with stylists and collaborating with them were crucial, as they demonstrated to commercial clients that I could photograph fashion and clothing.

The agency arranged meetings with various agencies in Paris, and I attended them, similar to how models go to castings, bringing along my portfolio to showcase my work. This approach was new to me, and it took some time to adapt since I wasn't familiar with this type of promotional method.
Two weeks before my birthday on May 12th, I arrived in JFK. In 2010, I moved from Germany to Paris, and it was also on May 12th, which was a mysterios coincidence.

After a long flight, I took a cab and went straight to East Harlem, where I was staying for the next three weeks. I quickly took a shower, left my bags at home, and went for a walk. I couldn't wait to explore and start discovering the city, but my perception was impacted by the jet lag that I was experiencing for the first time in my life.

In a way, I already knew this city pretty well from all the movies, TV shows, advertisements, books, and music videos that I had seen. Images of American culture, the American dream, and the American way of life were already pre-programmed and pre-installed in my mind.

NYC, like Berlin, Paris, and Moscow, made a huge impression on me. But this time, it was different. It took me a while to realize what it was. It's all about NYC's energy that makes it so special and unique. It's raw and wild energy that is storming and raging from everywhere around you. In some way, you might feel that electricity passes through your body and your mind. Buildings, cars, and people are in a constant vibration and in hysterical dancing.

With time, you get addicted to this constant rush of adrenaline. You would walk the streets and see great buildings, fantastic architecture, and next to them, terrible houses, streets full of trash, homeless people lying in the streets. There's craziness everywhere. You don't walk; you start to run, keeping up with the tempo.

I walked for hours non-stop, observing and absorbing this energy. At some point, it was too much, and you would feel your brain about to explode.

And I needed this explosion to happen in my life. After five years in Paris, I got stuck and framed into my own style. I became predictable for clients and for myself as well.

I was desperately looking to restart and reinvent myself and my photography. I needed new challenges, and NYC is the right place to be to challenge yourself to the extreme.

At first, I didn't have a plan to move and live in NYC. My initial plan was to stay for six weeks and see how things would go. Without any pressure and no expectations. But something was telling me that I was staying.


Inspiration techniques and sources, including notable photographers to watch and recommended books, articles, and interviews on photography.

Mood-boards, including strategies for creating them, organizing image references, and developing treatments, briefs, and call sheets.

Portfolio creation, how to choose your best work, what to include, and how to adapt portfolios for different clients.

Specifics of fashion photography, including the differences between commercial and personal work, rates, and negotiations. Resources such as articles, documentaries, and magazines on fashion, as well as offer guidance on creating concepts and managing prices and costs.

" To take photos, you have to love life – then you can photograph anything."

Exposing yourself to life and absorbing as much as possible is crucial. Read books, poems, magazines, and newspapers, watch movies and documentaries, and visit galleries, exhibitions, and theaters. Stay curious!

If you want to be a photographer, you must live for it. Research every day, keep a visual diary, and journal your impressions and ideas.

Photographing people requires meeting people. Learn to listen, notice the beauty around you, observe, and fall in love. Make new connections and bonds, and get inspired by people's stories.

Since 2001, I've been traveling all over the world, changing cities and countries every few months. It has not only affected my life but also my photography.

Berlin brought raw, wild, and dark energy into my life and photography. The city's vibrant and edgy vibe allowed me to capture the raw and unfiltered essence of life.

Paris enriched me with its artistic aesthetics, and it was where I first manifested the femme fatale style. The city's rich artistic history and enchanting beauty inspired me to create a unique style that embodied the seductive and alluring nature of the femme fatale.

Moscow is absolutely cyberpunk, full of crazy contradictions and opposites. The city's futuristic and eclectic mix of cultures and traditions provided a rich and diverse landscape for me to explore and capture through my photography.

NYC created an insane remix of everything I had seen and learned before. The fast-paced environment pushed me to be more creative and daring in my approach to photography. It was an inspiring and energizing place to be as an artist.

L.A. is a city where I can find a perfect balance between nature, work, and still life. The city's stunning natural landscapes and laid-back atmosphere allowed me to find a sense of balance and tranquility while pursuing my passion for photography.

London is a mix of NYC & Berlin. The city's edgy and dynamic vibe, coupled with its rich history and diverse cultural landscape, provided a unique canvas for me to capture the ever-evolving essence of this iconic metropolis.

Comfort zones are vital to recover, decompress, and recharge for a short period of time. But then I have to move forward, challenge myself, and push into the unknown to discover new things!
" I spend a lot of time preparing. I think a lot about what I want to do. I have prep books, little notebooks in which I write everything down before a sitting. Otherwise I would forget my ideas. "

― Helmut Newton
The first steps in creating a mood board in photography start with gathering photos from various sources, including fashion magazines, social media, and online photography platforms. This process allows me to gather a diverse range of inspiration and ideas for my mood boards.

When selecting images for a future shoot, I begin choosing photos that align with the theme or concept of the project. I pay special attention to color schemes, composition, lighting, and poses. It is important to create a cohesive mood and character in the mood board, ensuring that it clearly conveys the intended aesthetic.

In addition to photos, I also consider the use of other visual elements such as typography, illustrations, and textures. These add depth and interest to the mood board and help convey the ideas and concept of the shoot more precisely. By varying the visual elements, I create a unique style and visual impression that aligns with the intended concept.

To make the mood board even more artistic and structured, I experiment with different layouts and design options. By using various compositional arrangements, I create a harmonious placement of photos and other elements on the mood board, making it more informative and visually appealing.

Ultimately, creating a mood board in photography allows me to visually organize ideas, inspiration, and concepts before a shoot. It serves as not only a source of inspiration for myself but also a means of communication with the team, models, or clients. The mood board helps establish a unified visual platform and understanding of the shoot's goals, leading to a more successful and productive project implementation.
Here are examples of mood boards inspired by music videos:

"Formation" by Beyoncé: Color scheme: Black and white with bright contrasting colors. Composition: Bold angles and dynamic movements. Style and outfits: Powerful and confident style, fashionable attire.

"Take On Me" by a-ha: Color scheme: Bright pop-art colors with black and white graphics. Composition: Play with reality and animation, sketch effects. Style and outfits: Retro aesthetics, 80s style, romantic image.

"Sledgehammer" by Rihanna: Color scheme: Cosmic palette with violet and blue tones. Composition: Geometric shapes and abstract elements. Style and outfits: Futuristic style, extravagant costumes.

"Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen: Color scheme: Bright and vibrant colors with transitions. Composition: Dramatic shots, intense facial expressions. Style and outfits: Rock aesthetics, eccentric attire.

"Bad Guy" by Billie Eilish: Color scheme: Dark and moody shades with bold accents. Composition: Camera experiments and unconventional angles. Style and outfits: Alternative aesthetics, unpredictable looks.

"Thriller" by Michael Jackson: Color scheme: Dark and warm tones, especially red. Composition: Tense atmosphere, dramatic plot twists. Style and outfits: Zombie-themed, iconic Michael Jackson style.
After creating a mood board for large photo projects, the next logical step can be developing a treatment. A treatment is an action plan that includes all the necessary details and instructions for the successful execution of the project.

In the treatment, I would outline the concept and mood of the shoot and provide detailed descriptions of the chosen locations, clothing style and wardrobe, lighting setups, and equipment to be used. It would also include information about props, set design, and other important elements that will help create the desired visual effect.

Additionally, I would specify details about the models, hairstylists and makeup artists, and other team members to ensure that everyone knows their roles and tasks.

The treatment would also include a shooting schedule that breaks down the project into segments and indicates the start and end times of each phase. This would help keep all team members synchronized and stay within the set timelines.

Finally, in the treatment, I would describe the post-processing process, including editing and retouching methods that will be used to achieve the desired visual style.

Overall, developing a treatment after the mood board will help create a clear plan of action and ensure effective collaboration among all team members to achieve successful results in the photoshoot.
Julia approached me with the idea of a collaborative photoshoot. She sent me a few of my photographs that she liked and shared her Instagram account. Her photos emitted a special energy and aura that were easily noticeable. It's hard to articulate why, but something about them captivated me, and I became very interested in interpreting her beauty and energy through my vision. We began organizing the shoot.

We photographed in the studio, and Julia prepared her wardrobe choices, including some pieces from the DSMT collection, which perfectly complemented our shared mood boards. I was amazed to learn that Julia is a mother of three children and yet she was in incredible shape.

I remember that it took us some time initially to find our rhythm and pace, but this often happens before something truly special emerges during a shoot. As we got to know each other and became more attuned, the photographs gradually became more unique. The shooting process itself and the interaction with Julia became a profound and creatively fulfilling experience.

In the end, we created a series of highly captivating and vibrant photographs that remain some of my favorites throughout my career.

The photograph above illustrates the peak of female strength and beauty within my creative exploration. Although the pose may appear aggressive at first glance, it's not about raw power or violence per se, but rather about a more creative and constructive force that showcases undeniable beauty in this world.

The poses in these photographs are intricate, but given the extraordinary physical preparedness of the model, we were able to create interesting compositions and dynamics within the frame.

Julia was incredibly flexible and could assume any possible, and sometimes seemingly impossible, pose. Often during this shoot, I simply moved around Julia, who was engaged in a sort of deep meditative tantric dance. It's difficult to put into words, but it was a creative revelation that generously enveloped us.

At that time, this photograph also deeply reflected the complex and powerful processes happening within me. Through Julia's reflection, I discovered an even more distinct artistic interpretation of the female image that I aspire to capture in my photographs.

This photograph portrays a confident woman—strong, desired, provocative, and simultaneously gentle, loving, and vulnerable.
" Photographers have to make the clothes look fantastic; that's why we get paid. "

― Patrick Demarchelier
When a photographer has no bookings, there are several important actions that can be taken:

Improving skills: This is a great time to enhance photography skills. One can explore new techniques, participate in online courses, experiment with new equipment, and practice different styles. This will broaden one's horizons and enhance professional abilities.

Personal projects: Personal projects allow photographers to experiment and create without the constraints of client expectations. It's a time for self-expression and developing one's own style. Personal projects can also serve as excellent material for portfolios and showcase the photographer in a new light.

Networking: In the absence of bookings, it is important to actively build and maintain connections with other photographers, stylists, models, and industry professionals. Participating in events, joining social media communities, and networking with people in the industry can lead to new future opportunities.

Marketing and promotion: Photographers should continue to work on marketing their business even when there are no bookings. This is a time to update and optimize websites, create social media content, develop marketing materials, and attract new clients. Strong marketing efforts will help gain attention and increase the chances of future bookings.

Self-care: It is important to prioritize self-care during periods without bookings. The photography business can be stressful, so photographers should dedicate time to rest, rejuvenation, and self-care. Finding a balance between work and personal life, spending time with loved ones, engaging in other hobbies, will help prevent burnout.

Exploration and inspiration: During periods without bookings, one can dedicate time to explore the work of other photographers and artists. Reading books, studying magazines, visiting exhibitions, and exploring various sources of inspiration will help develop creative vision and enrich one's work with new ideas and concepts.

Education and knowledge-sharing: Participating in photography seminars, workshops, and webinars can be beneficial during periods without bookings. It's a time to deepen knowledge and skills, as well as exchange experiences with other photographers. Education and knowledge-sharing will help expand professional networks and improve work.

Updating and organizing materials: During periods without bookings, one can allocate time to update and organize their photographs and materials. This includes editing and selecting the best shots, updating portfolios, and creating a system for storing and organizing work. Such an approach will ensure readiness for future bookings and projects.


Building teams and engaging with models, highlighting what makes a top model. Learning from masters, the techniques and methods used to create stunning photographs.

Different types of lighting used in photography, including natural, strobe, continuous, and LED lights. Tips on how to efficiently observe and use space on a set, including working on outdoor and indoor locations.

My experiences with erotic photography, including my first experiments and the creation of erotic pictures while maintaining aesthetics.

Specifics of shooting in the fashion industry, including the differences between commercial and personal work, rates, and negotiations. Articles, documentaries, and magazines on fashion, as well as guidance on creating concepts and managing prices and costs.
When working with professional models, their talent in front of the camera is a key element in creating striking photographs. However, my task goes beyond simply setting up lighting and posing. I also strive to capture their unique individuality, making each shot truly special.

Effective communication plays an important role in a successful shoot. I aim to create a comfortable and trusting atmosphere where the model feels confident and can express their individuality. It is important to be respectful, provide clear instructions, and be open to their ideas.

Establishing a connection with the model is crucial for achieving the desired results. I try to create a fun and relaxed atmosphere where models feel natural and trust me.

I always treat models with great respect and professionalism. Building positive working relationships not only helps me create excellent photographs but also helps me earn a reputation as a photographer that models want to work with.
" I wish I could say the same for the young women who were just on the runways at the New York fall collections. Overall, they were pale and thin, and entirely lacking in the joyfulness and charm that once defined the supermodel. This, of course, is not their fault: Designers now near-uniformly favor a non-vivacious, homogenous ideal."

― Anna Wintour

In this video, you can see how the photographer and the designer lead the models, stylists, makeup artists, and other professionals to create magic on the set.

You notice how each team member plays their role in the process and how their synchronized interaction leads to the creation of stunning shots.

You see how they adapt to changes and find creative solutions to achieve the desired result.
Your task is to explore ready-made lighting setups and compositions, which are widely available on Google, in order to apply them independently in your own photoshoots. Carefully study various lighting setups used in professional photography and select a few that you particularly like or that suit your shooting style.

Once you have studied the ready-made lighting setups, conduct your own photoshoots using these setups. Pay attention to how they impact the resulting images and how well they align with your expectations. Evaluate which lighting setups work best for you and how successfully you were able to adapt them to your own style and vision.

After that, you are encouraged to make changes and modify the ready-made lighting setups to better suit your needs and style. Experiment with different variations and incorporate your creative ideas into the process.

At the end of the assignment, take note of the results you have achieved and evaluate the effectiveness and success of your experiments.

The goal of the assignment is to develop your ability to apply ready-made lighting setups and then modify them to better align with your creative needs and photography style.
For me, experimenting with lighting is a key aspect of the creative process. I strive to explore different lighting setups during my shoots to discover what works best for me.

However, my approach to lighting goes beyond simply memorizing and reproducing exact settings and compositions. I aim to gain a deeper understanding of how light influences the creation of different moods and effects in photography. This helps me develop my intuition and use lighting as a means to bring my creative vision to life.

When I had my own studio and acquired strobes, I often invited friends to try out different lighting setups together and see how they worked in practice. Initially, I would simply replicate lighting configurations, but over time, I started making modifications and experimenting to create more interesting and unique effects.

My advice to you is to not be afraid to experiment with lighting and find your own style. Explore different lighting setups, study the equipment, and try them out in your shoots. Observe the results and assess how well they align with your expectations and creative vision. Remember that experiments and changes can lead to the most unexpected and inspiring outcomes. So go ahead, explore new horizons in your photography, and enjoy the process!
Creating photographs with beautiful and sensual silhouettes using natural daylight can be a striking way to capture stunning full-length portraits. Natural daylight, especially during the presence of diffused light or during the early morning or late evening hours, creates soft shadows and contours around the subject, emphasizing the shape and texture of the body.

This lighting effect can add depth, emotion, and sensuality to the photographs. The silhouette, created by the contrast between the illuminated subject and the dark background, can evoke mystery and leave room for imagination and interpretation by the viewer.

To create such full-length silhouette photographs using natural daylight, it is important to choose the right time for shooting. Early morning hours or the late evening, known as the "golden hour" or the "blue hour," possess a special quality of light that can lend softness, warmth, or coolness to your photographs depending on the season and atmospheric conditions.

Composition also plays a significant role in full-length silhouette portraits. The positioning of the model and their pose can enhance the visual impact of the silhouette and accentuate their physical form. Experimenting with different angles and the placement of the light can help achieve the desired effect.

Remember that each silhouette portrait is unique, and the process of experimentation and searching for the right moment and light can be inspiring and creative. Embrace the uniqueness of each moment and let the natural light guide you in capturing beautiful and sensual silhouettes that leave a lasting impression.
In studio photography using studio lighting, I often employ long exposure techniques.

This technique allows me to create various effects, such as a blurred contour around the subject or streaks/light trails, which convey a sense of movement and infuse the image with energy and vibrancy.
I often use a projector in my photography. It's an interesting way to add originality and uniqueness to the composition and narrative of the frame. By connecting the projector to a computer, I can quickly change the colors, patterns, and images that are projected onto the models or the background.

This approach allows me to create amazing effects and transform ordinary shots. I can alter the background, add intriguing details, and create a new atmosphere. The projector also helps me play with lighting, generating unique light and shadow effects that give depth and dimension to my photographs.

It's fascinating to experiment with different color combinations and create unique patterns. By using projections, I can set the mood and convey my artistic concept. This allows me to infuse my work with individuality and a distinctive visual style.
Choosing to do a photo shoot in a hotel is a practical and cost-effective solution compared to renting a full-fledged photo studio. Hotels have a unique atmosphere and cinematic charm, making them ideal for small projects and individual work with models.

In my work with private clients, I often recommend booking boutique hotels for photo sessions. This allows us to have enough time to bring our creative ideas to life. Non-professional models, especially in private shoots, feel more comfortable and relaxed posing in a hotel room rather than against the white walls of a studio.

However, it's important to keep in mind that photo shoots in hotels can present certain challenges, especially when dealing with a large team, as some hotels prohibit photography or may charge an additional fee. It's also important to consider that the lighting in hotel rooms may not always be ideal, and their sizes can be limited. This is particularly relevant in Paris, where hotel rooms can be small in size.
We have collaborated with Katya on multiple occasions in New York and Moscow, creating stunning photographs each time. When we both happened to be in Berlin at the same time, we decided to do a new photoshoot. We found a recently opened hotel called Provacateur, and the name itself indicated that it was the perfect place for us. I recommend visiting the hotel's website to feel the provocative atmosphere. It's rare to find hotels that can inspire you so much, even just through their design and website aesthetics.

As a photographer, I always find that shooting in hotels is a wonderful source of inspiration for creating a cinematic and artistic atmosphere in my work. The unique interiors and decor of hotels can add depth and character to the images, helping to set the mood and tell a story.
Using a studio for photoshoots offers numerous advantages, especially in terms of control over technical aspects. It allows me to use studio lighting, create various lighting effects, and comfortably prepare the looks and makeup. Furthermore, having catering and a fully equipped kitchen in the studio makes the shoot even more convenient.

For me, the ability to experiment with studio lighting is particularly valuable. Thanks to studio flashes or continuous lighting, I can achieve effects that are difficult or impossible to create using natural light outdoors. Such experiments help me find unique solutions and develop my own recognizable style.

Working in well-known studios adds prestige to my work. It may seem insignificant, but it creates a positive impression among clients and the audience. Studios are not only places with high-quality equipment and modern technology but also serve as a form of advertisement for me.

Additionally, shooting in a studio frees me from worrying about weather conditions. Many studios offer rental of necessary equipment, making the organization of the shoot easier. Moreover, by working in a studio, I can focus on the creative process, minimizing external distractions.

However, I understand that shooting exclusively in studios can lead to predictability and creative stagnation. Therefore, I always strive to find a balance between working in the studio and on various outdoor locations. The variety of locations allows me to seek new and inspiring narratives, maintaining interest and originality in my photographs. My goal is to avoid stereotypical images and constantly seek new unique and captivating ideas for my clients and audience.
" What I've realized through the years is that everybody sees something different in the picture.

They put themselves in the photograph and everybody sees what they want to see, and I'm perfectly happy with that. I think that's a great thing, actually. "

― Jurgen Teller
Throughout time, my approach to erotic photography has evolved. Today, I use semi-nude photographs in my shoots to accentuate the beauty and sensuality of the models while maintaining an artistic perspective.

It is important to me that these photographs do not come across as vulgar or border on pornography. I strive to uphold a certain level of aesthetic appeal. After all, there is a distinction between sensuality and overtly sexual content. One is a spiritual and somewhat poetic attraction, while the other is simply graphic and overly explicit.

Some people may criticize nude photography for objectifying the model, but I follow my instincts and do what I believe is right according to my own vision and perception of beauty.

At a certain point in my career, I made the decision to focus more on nude photography rather than fashion photography. It was not an easy decision for several reasons, including the fact that it required a higher level of technical knowledge and life experience.

One of the most crucial aspects of such shoots is building trust with the model. Additionally, this type of photography demands a great deal of responsibility towards the entire creative process and the resulting images.
" If I create anything I create an atmosphere of trust an opennes. "

― Sante D'Orazio
I have always been drawn to the mystery surrounding the models I photograph in my shots. It is this enigma that drives me to create strong and impressive photographs. I strive to capture and convey something special in each woman, something that makes her unique and one-of-a-kind.

In my photographs, I aim to showcase not only outer beauty but also the inner essence of a woman. I seek to capture her emotions, her strength, and her vulnerability. My shots reflect feminine power and individuality, expressing the uniqueness of each model.

Each photograph tells a story through the portrayal of a character, pose, and facial expression. I strive to convey emotional depth and intimacy in the moment, allowing the viewer to feel the story I am trying to tell. I aim to create an atmosphere that captivates the imagination and sparks curiosity in the viewer.

It is important to me that every model feels comfortable and confident during the shoot. I strive to create a trusting atmosphere where the model can fully unfold and be herself. This helps me capture the true beauty and naturalness of a woman.

I believe that photographing models is not just about creating beautiful images; it is a process that helps each woman discover her inner strength and confidence. The opportunity to see oneself in a new light, to feel one's own attractiveness and self-affirmation, is a valuable experience for every model.

My ideal is to convey the beauty, elegance, and passion of the feminine image. I want each photograph to inspire and emphasize the uniqueness and power of women. My work reflects my love and respect for feminine energy.
When photographing nude subjects in the erotic genre, the use of red color can play a significant role in creating an atmosphere of passion and sensuality. Red symbolizes love, desire, and intimacy, which makes it a popular choice in erotic photography.

In my work, I experiment with various ways of using the color red. It can be applied in the background, clothing, or accessories of the model, as well as in lighting and post-processing. Red color, especially when combined with soft and natural lighting, can evoke a sense of warmth and intimacy in the photographs.

The use of red color in nude photography is a powerful way to express erotic energy and intimacy. This color has an attracting power and can draw attention to emotions and forms, accentuating attractiveness and sexuality.


Image selection, including tips on choosing the best images and creating layouts for them. Post-production techniques.

Printing your work, including fine art prints, posters, and postcards. Tips on creating polaroids, zines, and books to showcase your work. Moving images and fashion films.

Preparations for exhibitions, retrospectives, and lectures, including how to present your work in public settings.

Importance of archiving your work, including how to organize your files and use them to progress in your photography career.

Very often, during photo shoots, I conduct an initial selection of photos right on the spot. I review the shots to get a general idea of the work done and eliminate technically unsuccessful frames. Intuitively, I also look for the first successful photos that I like and that inspire me to continue shooting even more.

During the review, I focus on composition, lighting and shadows, contrasts, as well as the emotions and mood conveyed by the model and how poses look visually striking. Photos on the camera are like sketches or drafts to me, so I'm not always ready to show them.

This process of initial selection is often based on emotions as I'm in the midst of the shoot and may not always be objective in the context of the entire session. However, striving for objectivity is not the goal; the main thing is to maintain the pace and dynamics of the shoot.

There are times when the photos I liked during the shoot don't always make it to the final selection when I later go through the material. Sometimes photos need time for everything to settle, including emotional involvement in the creative process of finding the right shots.

During commercial shoots, photos are often displayed on a monitor for the team or client to observe the results in real time. In this case, photos on the camera and on the screen may look and be perceived differently.

The advantages of this approach are that you have greater control over the process, and displaying the images helps ensure that everything is going according to plan. You and your team can quickly identify and rectify any mistakes.

However, there are also drawbacks. It may lead to a loss of the shooting's dynamics and the magic of the creative process, as well as the risk of falling into the trap of comments and opinions from the team and clients. It's important to determine which team members will be involved in the review and selection process.
Cropping is a powerful tool in retouching photographs as it allows me to create a completely new composition that can better express the message and the emotion I am trying to convey. By cropping an image, I can remove any unnecessary or distracting elements and focus the viewer's attention on the most important part of the image. It allows me to emphasize specific details and create a stronger sense of balance and harmony.

However, it's important to use cropping intentionally and with care, as it can significantly change the meaning and impact of the original photograph. By cropping an image, I am essentially deciding what the viewer will see and how they will interpret the image. This responsibility requires a deep understanding of the message I am trying to convey and a sensitivity to the impact of each decision I make during the retouching process. Overall, the power of cropping lies in its ability to transform an image into a new and more powerful work of art that can communicate ideas and emotions in a profound way.
In 2011, I held my first lecture in Minsk, and after announcing it on Facebook, I was pleasantly surprised to receive over 60 applications to participate. At that time, I had been actively involved in photography for about 4 years, and I had enough material for a two-hour lecture.

During the lecture, I shared my experience of photoshoots in Paris, Moscow, and Berlin, and I was thrilled to receive a lot of positive feedback and questions from the engaged audience. It was very rewarding to see their eagerness to learn about my journey as a photographer working in different cities.

Since then, I have given more than 15 lectures in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Minsk. Later on, I came up with the idea of launching an educational online platform, and I was glad that over 100 students have taken my individual online courses.

I have always considered giving lectures and sharing my knowledge an important and meaningful aspect of my photography. It is a great tool to review my own path and structure my experience in photography. The preparation for my lectures usually takes several weeks. I feel a responsibility towards the people who pay to attend my lectures, and I strive to remain authentic, open, and sincere to be effective and valuable to my audience.

My main goal is to create a product that would personally interest me.
Over time, the printing of my works has become an important element in the development of my creative journey. It helps me see my photographs in a different light and opens up possibilities that I may not have realized before.

Printed works have a completely different status and are perceived differently. I can pay attention to details that may not be visible on a phone or computer screen. It's a different format, a different level of quality in perceiving the frame and evaluating what works and what doesn't.

When I print my photographs, I observe how colors and tones are reproduced on paper, which may differ from what I saw on a digital screen. It may be necessary to adjust color saturation and contrast to achieve the desired look in print. This requires learning or working with professionals in the field.

Undoubtedly, black and white photography can be simpler to print. But there are nuances there as well.

For my exhibitions and books, I use different approaches to printing and presentation to emphasize the impact of my works. Even showcasing my portfolio with printed works for potential clients is much more impressive than digital images.
Polaroids distinguish themselves in the photography world, especially amidst digital advancements. Their immediate development and unalterable nature give these images a genuine allure, capturing moments with unmatched directness.

Each Polaroid is irreplaceable, with no possibility of duplication, making every shot unique. The characteristic faded colors, soft focus, and iconic white borders contribute to their intimate and genuine feel, capturing moments in their truest form.

Photographers often incorporate Polaroids into their work for their distinctiveness and authenticity, enhancing their portfolios with a touch of originality.

The significance of Polaroids in photography is profound. They evoke a sense of nostalgia and timelessness, offering a raw and intimate glimpse of reality. Their appeal extends to collectors and enthusiasts for their exceptional qualities.

The process of using Polaroids adds a layer of intentionality to photography. The limited shots and associated costs encourage thoughtful composition. The anticipation during the brief development time and the physical interaction with the final image add to its charm. It's a blend of artistic intuition and the unique capabilities of Polaroid technology, creating a memorable and engaging experience.
Polaroids distinguish themselves in the photography world, especially amidst digital advancements. Their immediate development and unalterable nature give these images a genuine allure, capturing moments with unmatched directness.

Each Polaroid is irreplaceable, with no possibility of duplication, making every shot unique. The characteristic faded colors, soft focus, and iconic white borders contribute to their intimate and genuine feel, capturing moments in their truest form.

Photographers often incorporate Polaroids into their work for their distinctiveness and authenticity, enhancing their portfolios with a touch of originality.

The significance of Polaroids in photography is profound. They evoke a sense of nostalgia and timelessness, offering a raw and intimate glimpse of reality. Their appeal extends to collectors and enthusiasts for their exceptional qualities.

The process of using Polaroids adds a layer of intentionality to photography. The limited shots and associated costs encourage thoughtful composition. The anticipation during the brief development time and the physical interaction with the final image add to its charm. It's a blend of artistic intuition and the unique capabilities of Polaroid technology, creating a memorable and engaging experience.


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