Alena – (Photographer)
Can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your background?
My name is Alena, I was born and raised in Belarus, but have lived in the US since 2012, where I moved with my husband and daughter. I’m a teacher of English and French language and literature, but as you can see I gradually moved away from teaching. After moving to the US, and not being a native speaker, I couldn’t teach and wasn’t ready to send my little daughter to a day care. So I searched for ways to make money while being a stay- at- home mum. This is how I decided to take up food photography, and I thought it was brilliant! Cooking is something that I do anyway and I’ve always enjoyed the aesthetic side of things.
How would you describe your portfolio?
My portfolio primarily consists of food. Rustic vibrant still lives with a modern touch.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Mostly, it’s an exposure to many different styles and works of talented people that you can find on Instagram or in magazines and blogs. I sort of accumulate ideas, until one of my own is born during the shooting process. Sometimes the idea comes to me from nowhere in the middle of the night and I have to write it down before it slips away in the morning. But when shooting very often what was one idea ends up to be a totally different and even greater idea, as a creation happens in the process.
I add a piece of myself to whatever inspiration I have and this is why, I think, my work is recognizable.
Many of your images focus on food, what do you think of the social media food trend?
I think that food rules the world. Kidding! I think it’s just something cool to learn, at least it was for me, as I’m a self-taught food photographer. When you don’t know how to approach a bowl of soup with your camera, and then you suddenly do, feels kind of great, especially when people start to buy your images.
Speaking of social media, I mostly deal with Instagram and can see how popular food photography is, good food photography, I should specify. I guess the demand and a positive feedback creates the production, so all the cooking enthusiasts out there suddenly have a field to express themselves and to be appreciated.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Eating after shooting. Kidding again! Most of all I like when my 4 year old daughter helps me in food styling and mimics me taking photos on her own kid’s camera! She is my little helper
What do you like to do when you are not working?
I spend all my time with my daughter Eva, we go swimming and for walks together, playing a lot…and taking lots of photographs!
What is your most popular image?
My two most popular images are of a burger on a rustic background and a healthy spinach salad, and I’m always wondering whose going to win this battle, healthy or junk food.
Images featured above: