Welcome to another episode of Photographer Spotlight, I’d this tiI’d like to welcome Iza Łysoń, who is a very gifted nature photographer from Poland. She shows truly amazing images of foxes and dogs. In this exclusive interview, you’ll find out what it is that makes her so good in her field.
1) Tell us about yourself, where are you are from, what got you into photography and how long do you have done photography?
Iza: I’m Iza Łysoń – twenty years old dog lover and neuroscience fanatic. Monday to Friday I study neurobiology on Jagiellonian University in Cracow, Poland. During weekends I rest in a little village located in southern Poland with my charming golden retriever – Luna.
2) How and what got you into photography, and since how long do you do it?
Iza: It’s hard to believe for me, but I have been dealing with photography for about 8 years. It is nearly half of my short life, that’s why it seems to me as if I have been doing it since I was born. As a matter of fact, I started my adventure with photography from taking the pictures of my dogs. When Luna, my golden retriever puppy, came to my house I was taking a lot of photos of her because I wanted to have my reminder of her childhood. Puppies are growing significantly too fast! However, after some time has passed, I started to wonder how to make my photos something more than just ordinary snaps burdened with sentimental value. I wanted to add to them some artistic element.
3) How much time do you spend on photography on average?
Iza: I spend few hours per week to take photos and much, much more to select and post-processed them. Selection takes a lot of time because of the large amount of pictures I took in order to catch the perfect moment.
4) Which gear do you mainly use / What is typically in your camera bag?
Iza: I use a Nikon D610 with a Sigma 85mm f/1.4, Sigma ART 35mm f/1.4, Sigma 15mm f/2.8 fisheye and a Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 VRII.
5) How do you prepare for an image?
Iza: I take a lot of treats and dog toys with me and plan in which location I would like to photograph. I never know how photos will look like because every dog is different. I don’t know if he likes to do what I want him to. It would be a little bit frustrating if I couldn’t take a planned photo, so during the session, I’m just trying to catch the best moments. Good mood and lot of patience are necessary!
6) How do you get such a wonderful light and colors in your photographs?
Iza: I take photos mainly during the sunset in order to get soft and warm light – that kind I like the most. I avoid taking pictures at midday in order not to have shadows on dogs face. I also look for colorful places like flowers fields in summer or golden leaves in autumn.
7) How important is post-processing for you? Can you tell us what kind of post processing you typically do?
Iza: I think that I’m not a master of post-processing because I know only a few functions in Photoshop like the brush, clone stamp or curves. Nothing special, but sometimes it saves my photos from total disaster – when I photograph active dogs I don’t think about camera settings but how to catch my model in the frame in the outstanding way. Except that during post process I make my photos more soft, colorful and bright.
8) Do you have general advice and tips for other photographers?
Iza: It’s worth to watch the work of different photographers and it’s worth not to hide your images into a drawer. Publishing them in places where other photography lovers can find them and comment on them exposes you on a positive feedback or a constructive critisism. It’s important because it’s sometimes hard to find some mistakes by yourself.
9) What are your future photography goals?
Iza: I’m dreaming about photographing dogs in the beautiful landscapes of Norway or Iceland or to make a trip to the Alps with my dog. I hope to realize at least a small part of these plans this year!