I've always been intrigued by people who possess a spark of creativity, those who captivate with something unique, and their stories seamlessly become a part of me. It's not just that the subjects of my photo projects are incredibly talented, often with complex life stories; it's that, despite everything, they believe in their ideas, in themselves, and this belief is truly inspiring. Photography has become my means to see and feel the essence, something profound and intimate, in every person. I remember in my childhood, around the age of 7 or 8, I used to gaze at photographs of popular actors and singers on magazine covers. These individuals seemed extraordinarily beautiful and like fantastic superheroes back then. I deeply wished that my future would somehow be connected to this amazing world of cinema. My heroes are my inspiration. Whether it's photography, painting, literature, film, or theater, they all come alive when they evoke emotions and thoughts. It might not be the trendiest approach, but it's the genuine, unfeigned emotions, conflicting, sometimes inexplicable feelings, personal revelations, and thoughts that enrich us and nourish our spiritual essence.
Every new photo project is an exploration not only of the human nature and the character of my subjects but also of myself. I find joy in breaking through the wall of the ordinary and enabling my subjects to reach their core, something significant. During a shoot, I grant them the freedom to be who they want to be at that moment, a chance to be different from their usual selves, and discover something new about themselves.
In the project "Visual Signs" with the extraordinary Nino, I contemplated the language of the body, which is understood by all people, regardless of their nationality or cultural background. This language doesn't require translation; we intuitively understand visual signs. Human nature is like an encrypted code, and to decipher it, one must observe and notice the subtle gestures, facial expressions, and postures carefully. Non-verbal communication with my subjects during a photoshoot conveys much more in a photograph than words or concepts ever could. A visual sign, as a hint or a subconscious, genuine signal from the body, strives to transcend its boundaries and reflect the person nearby. I attempt to synchronize the movement of thought through body language, as if assembling something unified from numerous fragments.
In that moment, only the sense of utmost intensity of sensations matters, subconscious exploration of the other self. The body speaks more than the face, and the battle between the dominance of the body and the spirit is resolved. The body unconsciously reveals its truth, and I capture this metamorphosis through my camera.
Photography cannot exist without love; I wholeheartedly give myself to it. After the shoot, Nino said to me, "We had such a great conversation; let's be friends..."
In the project, color serves as an additional associative image of the hidden, eternal contradictions of the true nature of humanity, its fluctuations, and complex emotional states. But when color fades, what remains is the essence of figurativeness, its true core and nature. The blurred silhouette and indistinct outlines of the body speak of the impossibility of remaining the same and static in every new moment of time; we change and transform into something new, whether we desire it or not. No one can maintain a constant, uniform, fixed image. These endless, inevitable metamorphoses are constantly expressed in the visual signs sent to me.
Model Nino Ninidze
Photographer Slava Novikov
Makeup and hair style Ruslan Nurgaliev
Stylist Diana Lourens