I Have Found Faith in Myself and What I Do

Vlada Kozachuk is a young photographer from Saint Petersburg, Russia. She came to study graphic design but quickly found photography as her passion.

For me photography means much more than just a set of pictures. Photography is a tool that helps me to keep my memories alive. This explains my involvement in photography from a very young age. I’d taken a lot of amateur pictures for many years, trying to capture important moments that I wanted to remember. I grew up with a camera in my hands, and without a thought about photography as a profession. Moving to Chicago was a tipping point in my career. This big step in my life has opened a lot of new doors for me.

I use a Sony a6000 and a 50mm lens, which is my favorite at this moment. I believe that a good photographer can take a picture with any camera just by having an idea. But for every professional, it is important to find his own preferred equipment that will meet all of his or her requirements. It will allow them to express their personal vision correctly.

I prefer to take pictures outside, always in search of new locations. I would describe my style as urban, street photography and outdoor portraits. 

 

I mostly shoot in the downtown area. Downtown is the most diverse and vibrant part of the city that perfectly combines different styles of architecture. It is easy to find a place for any type of photo shoot just in one area, which is amazing. Another inspiring thing is the constantly changing weather. While Chicagoans are struggling with “winter depression” and longing for summer, photographers are trying to catch the special and extraordinary appearance of their city.

Now that I’m in the U.S. I'm realizing how helpful social media can be. I have met so many great and talented people through Instagram. Often when I meet someone in person for the first time, I actually already “know” them through social media.

Editing pictures is my favorite part of photography, because this process allows you to do everything with a picture. I don’t follow any specific style in editing pictures – it usually depends on my mood. For Instagram I use Snapseed, which has been my favorite for two years already. I use different tools and add a filter at the end. For professional photo shoots I use Lightroom and Photoshop.

I’d like to reiterate how kind and supportive people are nowadays. Instagram has given me not only new friends, but also my first clients. Thanks to that responsiveness I have found faith in myself and what I do. 

I grew up in Saint-Petersburg, Russia, and moved to Chicago in 2016. At this moment I study web-design and work as a freelance photographer, and continue to develop my photography skills every day.

There are many photographers whom I admire. But I think, that inspiration comes from inside, so I perceive other people’s work as an opportunity to exchange ideas and experiences. My main influence is my husband, the first person who believed in me and helped me to believe in myself. Every day I thank him and the other people who support me.

I would love to travel around the world with my own project, visiting different cities and taking series of pictures. I like that every city has its own atmosphere, thus my approach to photography in each city and editing might vary.