Denitsa Popova is 27 years old from Burgas, Bulgaria . She lives by the sea, which has always been her inspiration. Тhat’s why it’s present on most of her photos. She connects photography with the unexplained feeling that she feels only when she’s taking pictures.
It’s been some time now since I have been part of the fantastic London Photo Festival, but my memories of it are still quite vivid. I heard about the LPF from one of my teachers at University in Germany, where I used to study for a Teacher’s degree in Fine Art at that time. Since I was planning to spend a semester abroad in London anyway and now found out there would be a chance to exhibit my work, I didn’t hesitate a second and booked my space.
So finally the big day of the private view came and I remember walking around the exhibition thinking “damn, there are some really good photographer’s in this show, who really know how to use their camera.” A little bit embarrassed about my own photo I tried to look at the positive sides, like that I got to meet a lot of interesting people and generally the whole experience of exhibition practice was very helpful. So, as I was in company of nice people and good wine, you can imagine how I surprised I was, when suddenly my name was called out for “Best in Show”.
I didn’t expect it at all I can’t emphasize this enough!) and I think it actually took me a few days to realize everything. Also the fact that my picture got sold straight from the show seemed very unreal at first. It was all too good. I’m still in touch with the collector who bought my piece and it’s such a nice thing to know my photo is now hanging miles away in somebody else’s living room.
Still, what was even more important to me – That night, after winning the award, my boosted ego decided to take my career as an artist seriously, quite my studies in Germany, stay in London and finish my Fine Art degree here. Looking back, there isn’t much to say other than: It has been the best decision I’ve ever made. After two wonderful years full of art, putting up and taking down many more shows and finally graduating from Uni, I am know back in Germany, Berlin dividing my time between working for a gallery and concentrating on my own art work.
Nothing left to say than life is good. In fact, it’s great and I really have to thank everyone from the LPF, without whom all this might have never happened.
Through The Lens of a Blind Photographer
There’s nothing special about a camera. It’s the person behind the camera that makes the image what it is. The power of a photograph can change the world. It is in its ability to change the way we see things. Every photographer has a point of view to share with the world, a vision, a story, a dream, a philosophy.
As a legally blind photographer, I’m excited to be a part of London Photo Festival, to share with you, my perspective, alongside with my colleagues. Together, we are shaping the world.
This year’s theme is the Four Elements. I’ve chosen to present a piece that depicts the element of Water. A Hazy Morning in Jinan was taken at Daming Lake in China. Daming Lake is known for its serene landscape and its beauty has been the topic of Chinese literature. The element of Water represents flow energy. It is often used as a symbol for good fortune because flow energy attracts prosperity. I feel that we are living in a fast paced society that needs to slow down and reconnect with nature, so that we can experience flow energy. I often choose nature as my subject matter because i feel that it can help us to connect with our greater existence.
For me, photography has changed my life by changing the way I see things. Being visually challenged, photography has challenged me to see things differently. To see beyond what I can see. To look beyond what is physically there. To capture its essence, its energy, its meaning. It has opened my eyes to looking at the world around me. To seek beauty. To appreciate the world we live in.
Photography has opened a path to new possibilities for me. As a teenager, I was diagnosed with Stargardt disease, a rare genetic condition that causes me to have extreme near-sightedness that cannot be corrected. Hearing that I would never be able to drive, I was devastated. Not being able to travel as easily, I’ve often felt trapped. Photography offers me a sense of freedom and limitlessness. A way to escape the mundane. To transform the ordinary into something extraordinary. To create a dream world from where I am.
To see our world in a new light is to change the world. What every photographer has to offer is their unique, original point of view. Come experience the world in a new way. Join us, as we celebrate the art of photography at London Photo Festival 2016.
About Andrea Mai
Andrea Mai is a legally blind photographer, writer, and intuitive advisor based in Toronto. She enjoys travel and discussions about philosophy and personal development. Her writing has appeared in Huffington Post and she regularly posts her photography and writing on her blog. Her work is available at www.andreamaicreative.com