Russian born photographer Natalia (Natalia Klenova Photography) has been a professional photographer for 10 years. Her journey started when she lived in California and started a new hobby, taking lots of pictures when walking with her daughter. She says “I kept a camera with me every day. I photographed daily, anything and everything, so that the camera became an extension of my eye”.
Working from her studio, her work has a stylized look and feel that transforms the ordinary into vibrant works of art. She has certainly come a long way from her early days as an amateur photographer all those years ago.
Natalia, where are you from and where do you currently live?
I’m originally from Russia but I now live in Belgium.
What genre of photography do you specialise in?
I love still life photography and this is what I specialise in. It’s very broad and includes everything from food to flowers.
How did you get to your speciality?
I didn’t settle on my style immediately. I experimented by taking pictures of people, nature and macro until I found my passion and my style. I found myself in still life photography.
What are you working on at the moment?
My focus now tends to be in food photography. I really love taking pictures of seasonal fruits and vegetables.
What is your next project or assignment?
I love to work spontaneously. My online business allows me to be more creative as commercial projects often do not provide such freedom. I never know when the idea of my next project will come to my mind. Sometimes I can get inspired during a dinner in a restaurant, sometimes I find a nice plate in a local flea market and the idea of my next picture will already be in my head. I travel a lot so different countries and cultures are also a huge inspiration for me.
Are there any photographers whose work/style you admire?
Oh, the world’s most difficult question! I love the work of William Meppem, Anna Williams, Tara Donne, Ellen Silverman, Myles New… I could go on and on…
What photographic equipment would you never leave home without?
My photographic equipment is camera Canon 5D Mark III, Canon lenses and Hensel Studio Light.
What advice you would give anyone who is starting out?
I would tell them to simply practice, practice and practice more. It can never be enough.
Any pitfalls they should avoid?
They should always pay attention to detail. It’s the details that can make your photo.
Lastly… if you weren’t a photographer, what would you be doing?
Oh, in that case I would be a writer.
Images by Natalia Klenova. All rights reserved. No usage without permission.
Interview by Kav Dadfar.