About

I was born and raised in Sofia, Bulgaria. The magic of photography has been around me since I was a child thanks to the family photos my uncle, who was a photographer, loved to take. One of my most vivid childhood memories is about the long snowy winters, which made me feel like I was living in an icy magical fairy tale. Even now I still think that winter is magic. Years later I started skiing and hiking in the mountains. Quite naturally landscape photography became my true passion.

I have always been drawn to the arts - drawing as a kid, playing guitar as a teenager. Due to my inclination for engineering and at the same time for art, in my teenage years, I emphasized very seriously on drawing because I wanted to become an architect. Eventually, I became a mechanical engineer.

I made my first conscious attempts at photography in 2004. I started as an amateur, there were ebbs and flows, and I was learning on the run. My serious creative strivings and endeavors started in 2014 and continue to this day.

Recognitions:

  • 1-st place Sony World Photography Award, National award 2015
  • 2-nd place Sony World Photography Award, National award 2017
  • FIAP awards and selections
  • Publications in magazines and photography forums (The Phoblographer, Landscape Photography Magazine, others)
  • Group exhibitions

 

I found that I am most attracted to the wilderness (especially during winter) and the way the man intervenes in there. Photography is a great way of getting closer to the land and the life there and this is the main driver for me to keep going to such places.

I often observe people, surroundings - I notice small details. I tend to contemplate and to look inward, I am an introspective person. In my photography, I often stick to minimalism, muted colors, monochrome look, paying attention to details and focusing on one smaller part of the landscape.

I like to photograph scenes that evoke a strong sense of place but at the same time, I could just focus on a small detail – a tree, stone or figure in the snow. I like to make the common things unusual. I prefer to concentrate on subjects in my own country because I believe the best results can be achieved only when you have long-lasting and very close relation to the subject you shoot. Another thing I am trying to do is not just to go out for one single shot but to work on long-lasting projects, in series. This way I can better understand the place, the subject and I can better represent my idea.

In my work I am focusing on relationships and connections between the natural elements: earth, water, sky, and the marks we, humans, leave behind. I play with forms, shapes, lines, textures, lights. I like to observe and register transformations – seasonal, day and night, man-made. My goal is not just to photograph attractive places but to search for deeper meanings. I want to provoke our thinking and discussion about how we, humans, should coexist and balance with the environment.

There are a number of artists and people who inspire me like Michael Kenna, Bruce Percy, Paul Wakefield, Ansel Adams, Harry Callahan, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Paola De Pietri and many, many others who are not necessarily photographers or visual artists. I am very grateful to all of them for influencing me to be a better photographer and better person.

Once the idea is clarified, I go on place, walk, explore and photograph. I could be there for minutes, hours, days or keep returning number of times looking for points of view and waiting for the best moments. I often challenge myself with different or unusual points of view, with different lenses, unconventional compositions. To be successful, I need to apply my imagination, curiosity and patience. Only then I can expect satisfactory results.

Yours sincerely,

Emil

 

 

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