I was born in Vilnius, Lithuania. I lived in Vilnius most of my adult life and then in my 40s I moved to Germany. Later, I relocated to Rome, where I reside now.
Since I was a teenager I have always had a tight connection with photography. In high school I interned at a local newspaper in Vilnius. I wanted to explore photography world and dreamed to become a professional. But life took its turn, keeping me rather busy taking care of my children, working and studying at the University. Also, being an entrepreneur never allowed me enough time for developing as a photographer as I wanted to.
When I moved to Rome at age 50, I finally got the opportunity to dedicate most of my time to my old passion–photography. Since then it has been an amazing journey.
Everywhere. Being self-taught initially forced me to shoot literally everywhere to find the answers to my questions–and some of these questions remain unanswered.
My life experience is to keep an open mind. This helped get me into a permanent mode of observation. Walking with my guard down while trying to understand or interpret my surroundings it is how I learnt that scenarios for my photography doesn’t really matter. These may vary from some peaceful countryside, an empty street of a small village or coastline to the hustle of a crowded city.
My recipe for shooting is just to follow my gut. You don’t have to travel the world to be inspired but, of course, being outside my natural habitat makes me more aware, and raises my curiosity towards new cultures. I would say, that the impact of a new environment is always stimulating but not necessary.
Any time of the day during any season. This depends on my mood.
Everything. From TV screenshots to landscapes, but mostly candid shots of strangers. Capturing scenes from real life has become a second nature to me. Sometimes, I like it provocative, other times melancholic and quiet because there is no way to escape our own emotional presence while we are in a creative process. To an extent, my whole body of work is made of my attitude, priorities and the environment I am in.
Recently I became interested in shooting street style video interviews, where the words bring more powerful message then visuals but, of course, are still connected. This is something new and challenging, but at the same time incredibly interesting.
Lately, I have also shot more stories of people I met and who impressed me by some or the other reason. Again, this work is not a pure documentary or classical portraiture. This straddles a line with street photography, where I prefer an unobtrusive manner of telling the story, without dictated posed portraits. I push the shutter when the moment blends with my perception of the person. Showing some of their physical surroundings or other details of their lives also adds to their story. This is a demanding work that include new approaches and this makes it very exciting.
I presume this could be even a transitional phase in my photography, but I still need to figure it out. This will take time.
Because I love it. It is as simple as that. I imagine all my previous answers like everywhere, any time andeverything can sound nihilistic but seriously, I doubt there are rules or order in love.
By academic guidelines we are obliged to have our signature styles and to shoot at that time of the day when the light is just marvelous. I prefer instead to accept challenges and follow my passions. I pursue my photography without any imposed limitations. It is a longer path of discovery and somehow more nerve-wracking, but making mistakes and confronting self-doubt is the learning path for me. The results may be bitter or sweet but in the end this is my vision. I enjoy creating these precise, magical moments of connection with whoever my subjects are.
“Photograph the world as it is. Nothing is more interesting than reality.” Mary Ellen Mark