Katarzyna Krawczyk lived for 19 years in a small town in the south of Poland, in Pszczyna. She studied pedagogy in Katowice and also took IT courses. For 20 years, she has been a manual therapy instructor for disabled people.
Katarzyna, for 15 years, was responsible for the photo archive that gathers shots of the life in the center where she worked. At the moment, she’s responsible for the image of the center, contacting the local media and running the website. She also has been teaching elders basics of handling computer and phones for 3 years. You can follow her on Instagram @kaha_k
Hello Katarzyna, thanks for the interview.
Let’s get started. How did you start with mobile photography?
Hmm… if you want to consider mobile photography also the pictures captured by old mobile phones 🙂 , I started to use Sony Ericsson D750i 11 years ago. It had a macro zoom that was extraordinary for me. Because of it, I took my first photos of nature.
So, when I started taking pictures seriously on iPhone 3G, I felt it was the beginning of something new. And on April 2013 I uploaded my first photo on Instagram.
What model of smartphone do you use?
I am using an iPhone 5s.
This picture shows female cyclists during a race. I knew there was a cycling memorial in Pszczyna. I was walking to take a photo, but at some point, I turned around and I saw a dynamic scene. Unfortunately, I did not like any shot. I was coming back home, when I saw a billboard representing a man with his mouth open while holding his glasses to see better. I thought it could be a nice combination: it seems that the man on the wall is surprised by the bikers. I think it’s one of my best photos.
Your portfolio includes many shots of landscapes. Is it your favorite genre of photography?
Because of my work I have been taking pictures of people and events for several years. For this reason, I lost the joy of shooting. At some point, I understood that I was tired of it. When I stopped working as photographer-archivist, I took a break from shooting. It wasn’t fun anymore. Only when I spontaneously began to capture nature, the joy came back.
You took many pictures of cities, both cityscapes and details and street shots. What did inspire you?
I live in a small town. I feel like a kid when I go to big cities and I see skyscrapers, old architecture, streets, windows, doors, staircases and stairs. I take pictures spontaneously. I especially like old doors and door handles.
On June, I was in Wrocław for a few days. In the district of Ostrów Tumski there are over 100 gas lanterns. Every day, the man in the photo, dressed in the historical costume, manually lights and extinguishes the lanterns. They are lit every day 20 minutes after the sunset and are extinguished in the morning, 15 minutes before the sunrise. I heard about it from a friend and thought it might be a cool photo experience. I was not sure about the sunset time and when the lanterns were lit, I ran to the place where I could meet that men, but I saw that some lanterns were lighted. I was upset that I didn’t get the photo. Looking back, I noticed a black figure walking, holding a long stick in the hand. I ran to the man and took a photo while he was lighting the lanterns. He turned to me and asked: “Have you taken the picture?” I said that I did. And when he went on to the next lanterns, I followed him all the way, shooting a lot. The image above is one of them. It was a nice, full of emotions and uncertain evening. (Discover more about the tradition)
What are your favorite subjects in nature?
I live in a beautiful place, surrounded by lakes, mountains and forests. I like field roads, trees, water, sunset and insects, dew, hoarfrost, frost and flowers.
What inspired you to choose colors or black and white for a shot?
I choose black and white only for street photos and if I want to get a minimal shot. Sometimes, for the architecture pictures too.
I took these pictures on winter, over the dam in Goczałkowice Zdrój. I mentioned earlier that I live in a beautiful region where I’m close to lakes and mountains. Every week I’m at one of the lakes that are on the way to the place where I take computer classes. I try to go for a walk around the lake before and after classes and of course, I photograph them at almost any time of the day, the season and every month. My dream is to make a calendar with photos of the lake from each month. I really like this place, it’s very relaxing. I’m pleased that there will be a cycle tour around this lake and I can’t wait to take more photos of the place in the future.
How do you post produce your content?
I use Snapseed and VSCO to post produce and edit the shots.
I try not to show the faces of people in my photos. I mentioned that I live in a small town and once I took a picture of a woman along the street, I liked that photo. The woman found this image on my Instagram account and asked me to remove it. So, I did. Since then, I try not publishing faces unless I have permission to do it.
On April, I was at the photo walk in Krakow, organized by Mobile Photo Trip. Two of my colleagues were shooting a street art piece, a man singing a song under the rain. I’m happy again! That was the point when I decided to capture people from a different perspective. I really like this frame.
Have you ever thought to create a feature on a topic, or place, or event? If not, what story would you like to capture and show?
It’s my dream to capture a series of photos in a specific place, every month, in order to create a calendar or a catalog showing the change throughout the year. Unfortunately, I did not select one or more places where I can develop the project, but I’m thinking about the lake I mentioned earlier.
This photo shows people at the Dani Karaven Exhibition – Reflection in the Silesian Museum. There was a hall with huge mirrors on the walls, the floor and the ceiling. This exhibition was visited by many people and I took a lot of photos in that place. Some people enjoyed watching their reflections and were eager to photograph themselves in the mirrors, and I was too 🙂 This image captures some of the figures reflected in the mirrors. The three guys in the shot were moving in different directions: I could capture all of them without showing their face challenging several reflecting surfaces.
Thank you Katarzyna and keep shooting!