Tuesday, July 22, 2014

I found my "voice" as a photographer

There I was three years ago wondering the streets of New York with my first camera. I had been in New York many times before, but this time I had come all by myself for three months. I had just graduated high school in Finland. I had no idea what I was going to do next. All I knew was that I had to start my service in the the Finnish military in a few months, which is mandatory.  I also knew that I wanted to move to the United States when I finished that. I had no idea that the little thing in my hand would be my key to something different.. To something great! 



           My goal was always to do something different and to try not to be like every one else.  But also I was afraid of that, of being different, because we all know how people react to something different and something that they are not used to. Of course I also thought I would be like my father, a doctor, but I never liked reading and all that.  Then again I never liked art classes in school either, until I tried my sister's camera. A couple months later I bought my own camera and then I came here. 

          In New York I spend my days walking around and getting to know the city..and taking a lot of pictures, of course! At the end of the day I come home and transport my images to my ipad and edit my favorites with an app called Snapseed (which I still use daily.) After awhile I noticed that the pictures I took were actually good.  In order to show my work to the world I opened an Instagram account and posted a couple pictures.  I did the same thing with  Facebook too. Later on Nike used a picture of mine in one of their campaigns. 

          After three months I went back to Finland and I kept on taking pictures. I used my friends as models and I took self-portraits a lot as well.  I only showed people some of my pieces of work, because I was afraid that no one would like them. Then I was asked to take photos of a town called Imatra in Finland so they could use the photos for advertisements.  The first time I showed my images to them, they came up with an idea to open up a gallery dedicated to my work instead, which turned out to be a succes and it opened up so many new doors for me. Later on I worked with different companies in Finland.  For example, I began taking portraits of athletes.  Also I opened my own business and I took pictures of people who were graduating.

         Now I'm studying Photographic Imaging at Suffolk County Community College, which is located on Long Island in New York. A few weeks ago I was a part of a student art gallery in Huntington, New York. Out of 21 amazing artists I was awarded a first place prize for one of my pieces of artwork. 
          I must say that my style as a photographer has changed a lot since moving here. It's not just about taking beautiful pictures anymore, they all have a deeper meaning and they tell story. It's like a poem...I found my "voice" as a photographer.