Photographer: Oleksandr Tymkanych's Series Fantasyland

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Oleksandr Tymkanych is a 24 year old Ukrainian artist who lives and works in the Czech Republic. Oleksandr showed interest in the medium of photography from a quite young age and thus decided to study at the Secondary School of Applied Arts. When he later on went to University he discovered the Polaroid! He was fascinated by this new photographic expression after attending a workshop in Slovakia. He was captured forever! He has experimented with SX70, Spectra, SLR 680 and is currently working with- the starting to become obsolete- Fuji FP-100C film.

“Instant film immediately fascinated me. The magic of instant photography is today a very special feeling for me with a unique work of a material that has specific qualities; slight blurring, not too distinctive colors, and unmistakable qualities of a chemical process that cannot replace anything else. Even though someone may consider these qualities as a particular mistake or disadvantage when working. I try to use them for my own benefit; a seemingly separate process that does not interfere with it and influence it in any way. This is a very wide area for me to experiment with the instant material in the way of lighting itself, influencing the exposure and in various ways of developing photographs.”

His main interest is to work with expired material and be prone to surprises they can offer. He is always trying to find new ways to work with these materials and push the limits of the production to new intriguing ways in order to obtain extraordinary results.

Oleksandr’s series entitled Fantasyland is about a land of imagination, hope and dreams. Times, boundaries, are unknown in this imaginary world and the artist invites us to discover the unique inhabitants of unknown origins and location. Fantasyland is a series of constructed landscapes exhibiting great colour alternation and creating a playful atmosphere between objects and shadows.

The series is created with a Polaroid SX-70 camera and film; made up of 20 images presenting, in this imaginary land of no time or boundaries, a series of imaginary creatures creations of the artist’s imagination. “I use instant film to create emotive abstract still life. The result is two combined series of constructed landscapes and imaginary animals. The series, called Fantasyland, was created within the framework of a university project entitled "Animals". The process of the creation of these images was quite complicated. In order to create individual still life first I had to make backgrounds. I used mostly simple materials which I had around me – paper or cloth and then I started creating special surroundings for each image. I constructed it with natural materials like flowers, wooden pieces, stones etc. The last step was to create creatures that could exist in this surrounding and inhabit it. To create these creations, I most often used different types of wires, latex, and gips. Then they were shaped by hand like small statues. Lighting on these images is the most important thing. I used a variety of light sources, from colour filters, small hand lights, led lights and etc... I decided to use instant film because I want to express that everyone should develop their imagination. With this series I let mine run wild. Each of these photographs should draw the audience into their environment and devour them into the world of imagination. I knew that these properties offer me only a Polaroid SX-70 because it has ISO 125 and I can experiment with longer exposure time.”

Most of Oleksandr’s current projects, whether it is a school project or his own free project, he tries to work with classical materials. Oleksandr is inspired by his everyday experiences, feelings and surroundings, for instance movies and music. He dreams of travelling abroad after his studies.

Even though quiet young, Oleksandr has been published in the book Eighteenth Harvested, a book produced by the department of Advertising Photography at Tomas Bata University in Zlin, Czech Republic in April of 2016. He has participated in the exhibitions at Polagraph Gallery in Prague, Czech Republic as apart of their Material exhibition in July of 2016 and at Slovakia HalmiSpace as a part of their Polaroid exhibition in September 2016. He also been featured online at PolaroidLove.cz and DesignMagazin.cz.

Nowadays, he is focusing on his bachelor work, which will be dedicated to instant photography. But, of course he still works on new smaller projects with instant material such as FujiFilm FP-100C and Polaroid SPECTRA. “I have a great interest on expired films; I hope to present some of these projects in the future. And who knows maybe someday I will be able to use instant film for advertising work!”

You can connect Oleksandr on Instagram! 


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Lina Manousogiannaki is a visual artist based in Brussels, Belgium. She is a passionate Instant photographer and an editor of the Urbanautica online visual platform. Connect with Lina Manousogiannaki on her website and Instagram!


Innovations in Photography: Lilian Wildeboer's Holga to Spectra Images

Lilian Wildeboer is a Dutch analog and instant photographer who lives near Amsterdam, Netherlands, where she works as a bus driver for handicapped individuals. Lilian gave up a thirty-year long career in banking in order to do work that was more soulful and touched people's lives on a daily basis. In terms of photography, she is self-taught, learning from books, attending workshops, and taking inspiration from other photographers whom she admires. 

Lilian's body of work shows her boundless creativity. Her Polaroid Spectra Holga transferred images are otherworldly. representing vivid dream sequences that are both familiar, and yet unlike anything else we have ever seen. The characteristic Holga vignette combined with the bold colors, pulls the viewer into the scene allowing them to notice the light, the mood and the composition, which reveals itself to us slowly. These images are to be savored and then revisited, they reveal their secrets slowly, and we are left with one question in mind: How in the world did she do that?   

Lilian has a long history with photography, having received her first SLR camera at the age of 15. She describes that moment as the beginning of seeing and capturing moments of beauty. Lillian has always been drawn to nature and the beauty she has found there, especially tiny flowers and insects. She used this passion to begin practicing macro photography. A few years later, Lilian set up a photo studio above an obstetrics practice where she took portraits of expecting mothers and their newborns, work that she describes as being both tough and beautiful experiences.

Lilian has also done digital wedding photography. She loved capturing moments and expierences but did not enjoy the post-processing afterward, which demanded too much time in front of the computer for her taste. During this time she felt as though something was missing and gave up photography entirely for a couple of years. Lilian then discovered sites online which were dedicated to instant photography and 120 medium format film. She was captivated by this way of making photos, and she soon bought a Holga, returning to the basics of traditional photography, a change that felt right for her. In 2012, Lilian began to shoot instant photography, and fell in love all over again. She purchased a couple of Polaroid cameras and discovered both expired Polaroid film and the just released Impossible Project film. After shooting these films she realized that there is a certain magic in shooting instant film that nothing else compares to.

Lilian enjoys to experimenting and discovering innovative ways to utilize her Polaroid camera, like combining two different close-up lenses or a close-up lens with a motion blur filter. She has studied and experimented with many different techniques for manipulating her photos and she loves that there are no boundaries with instant film. Anything is possible. If you can imagine it, it can probably be done! After attempting many different techniques, Lilian had a wild idea! She wondered if she could take photos with a Holga on 120 medium format film and then transfer them to Impossible Project Spectra film.

Lilian's experiment went like this: She first took photos with her Holga, using Fuji Velvia 50RVP, ISO 120 medium format film. She then cross-processed the negatives to produce wildly saturated colors. After developing, she scanned the negatives and loaded them onto her tablet. She then used her Polaroid Spectra camera and a Polaroid stand-up duplicator to photograph what appeared on her tablet screen. This process obviously involved many adjustments with framing, image size, and lighting conditions. After many packs of film and tons of trail and error, she succeeded in making the first Polaroid Spectra Holga transferred images. The resulting dream like images can be seen below.

Lilian’s work has been widely exhibited.  Her work has been featured by Polaroid of the Day, the Polavoid, and published in Hylas Magazine's the Loss Issue. Her photos have been exhibited at Tête de l’Art in Rennes, France, Subway exhibition, as a part of Expolaroid 2017 and she also participated in “Are we humans or…”, a group exhibition in Beverwijk, Netherlands in 2016.  She is a second year member of the renowned 12.12 Project.

You can connect with Lilian on Flickr and Instagram.    


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Anne Silver is an instant photography aficionado who lives in Paris, France and is a member of the 12:12 Project. Connect with Anne Silver on her Website and on Instagram!