Ivan Miladinov is a young and promising photographer. He himself claims that photography is a major part of his life, and the more you shoot, the more you get involved in it. We hope he continues working in the same way, because we, as his fans, are always waiting for new photos.
I love to take pictures because this makes my life worthwhile. Although I have quite a different profession for which I studied almost 10 years, photography will always be my great passion in which I put my greatest efforts.
The first photo that I liked very much, there hasn’t been another like it so far. Not that I don’ like them, but there is always something that I would improve in a photo, no matter how good it is. And so it must be like this; in order to become better and better, self-criticism is the most important thing in order to be able to have a proper judgment of yourself. And yet my first picture, which is satisfactory, is a photo of the Cherepishki monastery, which I made in the fall of 2008. I was just lucky with the beautiful fall that year.
It is nature that gives me most inspiration. Before taking up photography, there were moments in which I watched natural scenes with a dream of capturing them in a photo. That is why I started with landscapes. Things from the life around me inspire me too, and I try to put my personal mood in the photos. Sometimes, I probably succeed in doing it.
I shoot with Canon camera. I am currently with Canon 5D markII, which appears to be my basic equipment, I also have a spare Canon 450D. I have a backpack full of camera lenses, filters, and other gadgets, every time I take different ones depending on the situation. But the most important part of the equipment is my tripod. I always have it with me.
The perfect photo is….well, it is hard for me to imagine how it looks like. Perhaps it is the photo that makes you feel like you’re there. Photography cannot convey the basic perceptions such as sound, odor, and any others that you feel when you’re in a given place. The more feelings your have while you’re looking at a snapshot, the better it is.
I started taking pictures seriously in 2009. I will never forget it, it is the most difficult at the beginning, but it is also the most beautiful. Then you are impressed by the smallest things.
The most extreme photos of mine are in fact those that I didn’t manage to take because of the incredibly bad weather. What I saw remained in my memory. The truth is that in my quest to capture nature in unusual conditions, I often run across such extreme ones that I can’t even pull the camera out of my backpack. That is to say, I sometimes do overreact. As much as you want it, it is simply impossible to shoot when there is wind of 100km/h. It is most difficult for me during winter, then all the photos especially those from high mountains cost me a lot of effort and dangers.
My most popular photo is perhaps the photo of a spring forest carpeted with wild garlic that I took in the Balkan mountains. Few people know that such places exist in Bulgaria, maybe that’s why the picture was so well-liked.
Color or black and white? Well, I love the colors of nature, and those in the photos, of course. Autumn is my favorite time for photos just for this reason. Black and white photography is very specific and I think it is suitable for specific themes and locations. Some photographers can shoot everything in black and white, but I don’t do that.
Landscape or portrait? If I had been asked this question two years ago, I’d have said landscape and nothing else but landscape. But now it’s different, since I started doing photography as a job, I often had to do portraits. And I liked it. I liked it very much. Currently, I am planning two projects which involve only portrait photography.
When shooting, I think about technical details such as the camera settings and about nothing else. At least in the ideal case. Of course it’s nice to think about composition and ideas, etc., but it is best to just let yourself feel these things. At least for me, I see something and just take a shot. Usually, I contemplate on the photos when I plan them. Also, most of the ideas were already in my head even before I leave for the specific place I’ll shoot.
The longest I have waited for the photo with Allium ursinum from the Balkans – two years ago. Of course, I didn’t wait on this same place. And as to how long I’ve been hanging around for a picture of a terrain, perhaps the most is one week, but then I usually shot some more and used my time.
The magical hour is this moment of the day when the light is soft, and the colours are nicely saturated. The picture has contrast, but the shadows are not as deep and without detail. This happens twice a day – at sunset and at sunrise. Most people wonder why I shoot only at sunrise and sunset. In fact this is not so, I take pictures for the whole day but I prefer most when it’s cloudy. Then light is not as sharp.
The best time for taking pictures is bad weather. Winter, summer, spring, autumn, no matter the season. Then everything is much more dramatic, as we are not used to seeing in everyday life in the city. The atmosphere is very dynamic, the colours are saturated or the picture is mystical. Conditions change constantly; during a strong storm you can make hundreds of different shots from only one place.
From shooting I learnt that there’s at least one different perspective to everything around us. I also learnt that everything around us is changing so fast, even nature, as incredibly as this may sound. A place will never be the same again next year or whenever.
My dream is to take pictures abroad. But I rarely have the opportunity to do that. I like Bulgaria, but I’ve already visited many places here. I dream of different climatic areas, such as the Arctic circle or the south of the Equator.
I learn mostly from what I see on the Internet. In the beginning, I used to look at so many photographs; I spent hours in photo-websites and various blogs for photography.
Of course, I love being in the open air. Be it not only for pictures, I really like to be outdoors. Sitting between four walls – this depresses me.
When I don’t shoot, I usually occupy myself with some hobby or spend quality time with my family and friends. To photograph landscapes is a lonely task. Actually, at the beginning photography was my hobby, but since I started earning my living with the camera only, I need vacation. So, I always try to do entirely different things in my spare time.
To any novice in photography I would say … Take a camera and go outdoors. Hanging out in forums or in a cafe in the city will not help you with the photos. The hang of it is to keep on going around and not to give up. Watch lots of pictures on the Internet and try to learn from the best photographers.
Severozapazena _ BG is a great project; I was really very excited when I found out that there is such a place on the Internet where one can dive into the magic of this region, unfortunately this part of the country has been underestimated by many. It was the Northwest that I first went to when I got my first camera. The Belogradchik rocks and the Western parts of the Balkan mountains offer great opportunities for hiking and photography. I hope the site to continue still further, promoting these beautiful places with comprehensive information and quality photographs.
And we hope that we will continue to publish the photographs of Ivan in the future.