After almost a year of frequent traveling Croatia - Cyprus and some countries in between, I have finally decided to stay for a month in my hometown Zagreb, the capital of Croatia. Even tough my 2015 wedding season is still not finished, I needed to spend a day creatively and amongst gorgeous dresses...
Without any luck, my friend Ivana from I.J.Design had been trying to catch me for the past months to make a shoot of her new collection. No wonder that she managed to organize location, model, makeup and hair in just a few days to make sure I don't fly away again. :)
Even in the photography business, it is a thrill to see an editorial about you in the paper. Photography magazines are an excellent way to get your name out there; it is even better to expose your art to the world in full-color spreads, where high definition lets your audience see even the tiniest of details where twisting of a sheer dress in the wind become sculptures through the lens of your camera.
I had the pleasure of photographing one of my lovely models at the beautiful Akrotiri salt lake in Cyprus at the end of past year; this photo shoot was picked up a year later by the Croatian bridal magazine Nova Vjenčanja.
The editorial team was a joy to work with. I have never worked with a more talented team; although there were a few moments during the shoot where things got tough, they and I powered through. I want to give a special thanks to Crina Barbu, whose make-up jobs are absolutely splendid. Osan Suzana Shirinian, who was our Litous designers assistant, was especially patient throughout the whole process, as was our model Alice Vuap.
Being published by this magazine has not just gained me a bigger audience. It's also provided me with the recognition and appreciation for my work that I and all photographers need. My work is my life, and I put every fibre of my being into each and every photo I produce. I am happy for getting that acknowledgement and validation to thrive me and be inspired to do more. After all, every appreciation and kind word means the world to me.
It is no secret that next to a wedding, fashion photography is my big love.
Beautiful models, awesome designer creations, gorgeous locations, lots of creativity - those are the words I can use to describe my latest editorial shooting I have organized during my trip to Cyprus.
I was lucky enough to meet Katerina, beautiful soul in love with smiles and life, and what is more important, fabulous fashion designer and young enterpreneur. Our story started with a simple coffee in Nicosia, resulted in so many ideas and plans.
This is our first fashion editorial, in collaboration with my good friend and photographer Cristian Dascalu and two wonderful models, Karina and Tina. Amazingly talented makeup artist Svitlana Koroleva made them even more beautiful.
Special thanks go to Hasan, who was our light assistant this time and to Sparta Sandals for providing our models amazing handmade leather sandals.
Whole editorial with this amazing team is coming out soon! :)
Carpe Diem spring/summer 2015
Photographers: Martina Hohnjec (Timeless Photography) & Cristian Dascalu
Light assistant: Hasaj Haj
Designer & stylist: Katerina Parpa (Carpe Diem)
Models: Karina Bond / Tina Andres
Makeup artist: Svitlana Koroleva
Hairstyle: Katerina Parpa
Shoes: Sparta Sandals
Accessories: Angeliki Savva (Trendy Accessories)
Video Editor: Filip Hohnjec
The wind softly caresses her hair, the sun kisses her skin, nature recognizes her as her child and embraces her. Never has her beauty been so strong and present, never have her eyes shown that special spark of freedom and happiness, a wild child, a wild love.
For me as a photographer, it is my ultimate goal to unite both nature's and fashion's beauty, to create a perfect ensemble of a free spirited wearing a breathtaking dress that makes her one with mother nature and at the same time makes her stand out and shows her inner beautiful energy. She is a strong individual, she knows what she wants and she knows her strength. But at the same time there is this undeniable softness in her soul, the elegance in her movement that is reflected by the lightness of the fabric flowing down her body, moving in the wind, dancing to the distant sound of a melody only she can hear. The sound of freedom, the sound of passion, a sound that takes your mind to some far away place where everything is possible and where there are no rules to follow. She is the bride, she is personified passion and love, she is the object of her husband's desire but also she is the unique individual living her dreams, fighting for her passions, caring for her loved ones.
Beauty does not have to be complex all the time, look at the simple but stunning beauty that lies in the lively flowing of a river, in the calm presence of a mountain lake, in the impressive strength of an old tree, held upright by roots that go so much deeper than anyone would ever imagine. Beauty often lies in the simple things. A gentle breeze moving the branches, a small bird singing its song.
The Akrotiri Salt lake in Cyprus inspired me to create this setting as a mixture of fairy tale, love story and adventure. You can find the 'behind the scenes' and some extra material here.
My bride is a woman who knows it does not take a loud and screaming styling to make perfectly stage her beauty. She surrounds herself with elegance and simplicity, which also shows in the simple but all the more beautiful shape and flow of her dress. She becomes one with nature, finds back to her own roots only to grow even stronger. Her strength and her softness combine and create her own unique aura, feminine, beautiful, pure grace. And she is standing there, her eyes fixed on the horizon, awaiting new adventures...
For every girl on the earth, the most important day in life is her wedding day. It has to be different from all other occasions because that is the moment when all eyes are up to her; she must shine like no one else and look like an angel which God sent for the man she is going to marry.
One of the biggest decisions you are going to make when it comes to your wedding day is your bridal gown. You know what your perfect wedding dress is - you have seen it in your dreams. Why not take that dress to reality by creating your unique design?
But wait... If you are not a designer yourself, you will not be able to design the way you want it to be. In my opinion, it does not mean you need to settle for less than perfection for your wedding dress. You can always hire a top notch wedding dress designer.
Recently I went for a wedding photo shoot in Cyprus. What a beautiful island it is... Because of its spectacular sandy beaches together with the outstandingly beautiful coastal regions, I fell in love with this place. If you have dreamed of getting married on an island, I cannot emphasize enough how perfect this place is for a wedding.
While I was in Cyprus, I had the chance to meet a lovely, fun loving Cyprus wedding dress designer named Lito Constantinou, owner of Litous studio in Nicosia. I went there to take photos for her interview for Moderna Vjenčanja, a popular Croatian bridal website.
Litous is making feminine dresses, using a lot of beautiful lace. She offers a full service couture bridal experience to brides to be with over three hundred affordable designer dresses to choose from. She has a ready collection of wedding dresses, but she is also creating custom and unique designs by order. The most noticeable thing about her is that she is a very dedicated person helping brides look spectacular on their special day.
When it comes to her studio, what I liked the most is that is amazing, big and impressive, full of hanging lanterns which Lito made by herself. When I was in Cyprus, I was quite happy that I will get to capture the most beautiful shop on the earth.
Yesterday I spent time with a photographer friend who told me that she is impatiently waiting to see photos I have done in Cyprus with beautiful Litous wedding dresses.
As I am having a hard time to select only the best photos from that shooting because each one is so gorgeous, I want to share a few behind the scene photos until the final ones come! :)
I have met Cristian and Costas in Bucharest while attending Roberto Valenzuela wedding photography workshop. Since I planned my trip to Cyprus, we started talking about shooting an editorial together, and also, have some fun.
For our shooting location, we chose Akrotiri Salt Lake in Limassol, which is special for its vegetation and low shrubbery. The lake itself is pretty much shallow; the water level over 50 percent of the lake is less than 30 centimeters deep.
During my trip to Cyprus, I got in touch with Hasan, a male model from Israel who changed his country for this sunny Mediterranean island.
We set up a simple mini shooting on a beach next to St Raphael Resort in Limassol. I liked that location because it gave me an opportunity to work with natural light, focusing on relaxed and candid poses.
I have enjoyed working with Hasan, who is tall and fit with great facial features. What is more important, he is really comfortable in his own skin, which made my job easier.
He is also available for bookings, so feel free to contact him.
I had an opportunity to meet and shoot the famous Croatian wedding designer Sandra Haddad and her gorgeous studio for Moderna Vjenčanja wedding website.
Sandra is a designer who wanted to step back from classical and "heavy" bridal gowns, so she offered her vision of a wedding day; clean and simple lines which breathe with romanticism and graceful loveliness.
Exclusivity is achieved by limited collections with emphasize on the floral details and satin ribbons.
Extremely romantic and breezy wedding dresses are designed for those who dare to be different and special, yet irresistibly feminine and gentle.
Interview with Sandra on Modern Weddings can be read here.