An iconic book of fashion images and natural portraits of women from Ukraine and Russia.
GOAL: to raise $3335.30, to shoot, assemble and publish a large format book of photos of Russian and Ukrainian women. I have paid for the cost of the trip myself and have purchased the plane ticket. All I need now is the right equipment to do a job of this size right, a new, Canon 5D Mark II, and a compatible lens and travel-carry bag. The Mark II is a formidable and essential camera, for the work I want to do. The goal behind the use of this camera is to create a published work, that will be unlike anything I have done before in scope and quality. The book will represent these Ukrainian and Russian women in a way that is timeless and communicates something about them, the place and the feeling that is created on the spot, while still communicating a sense of mystery in the images. The piece will aim to capture the spirit of these people and this place, that is steeped in rich history. The images will range from portraits to full scenes and backdrops that will use vibrant colors and muted tones juxtaposed against bleached and saturated scenes.
On May 1st, I leave for Ukraine and Russia for an extended stay of three months. My entire heritage on both sides of my family is Russian. I am a distant cousin of the Great Russian revolutionary, Leon Trotsky, whose name was Bronstein, before changing his name for reasons, revolutionary. As a Russian, who has never experienced Russian or Eastern European culture, I am eager to experience this part of the world myself and see a new way of life. I love Russian iconography, Russian films, Russian artwork and architecture. I have also, always enjoyed the company of Russian people, here in America, and have a warm place in my heart for Eastern European culture.
Having said that, my project is going to be a large format sized book exhibiting fashion and natural setting photographs of Ukraine and Russian women, as women can embody the energy of an entire culture and express it uniquely. The book itself will be an original, self-published coffee table sized book, with the cover and typeface influenced by Russian lettering and architecture as well as the Ukrainian and Russian culture. The photos will focus on each individual woman and will be shot in specific environments that relate to the subjects persona, and/or their heritage. Some subjects will be shot in rich exterior environments, which suit the individual, while others will be shot in interior environments that reflect something personal about them, or their heritage. The focus of the images will be the women themselves, in editorial fashion or natural settings, with a personal focus on creating exciting images that I've never shot. My goal is to push the limits of anything I've done before and create bold images that capture the unique beauty of these foreign women and their equally unique spirits.
I realize that the idea behind this project, going to Europe to photograph beautiful women, may be an opportunity to poke fun. I mean, who wouldn't want to go do that? For people who may not know me, or what I do, that reaction to this project may arise. Shooting subjects and doing fashion photo work with models, is my favorite kind of photography to pursue. I enjoy the collaborative effort of working with a team of people and ultimately, creating an energy between the subject and myself that translates to a photograph. This project is the culmination of over twenty years of working as an artist and ultimately pursuing high end fashion work as a niche, where I can be devoted to something that I love and mix my commercial and artistic aspirations.
The urgency of this project is multivalent. The time is right in my life for me to produce an ambitious project like this. I am at a place in my career where I have been working with limited equipment for years and making the most of it. Although I have created meaningful work with these available methods, in order to get real clients and shoot work that communicates to a wider audience, professional work that has an impact, I need better equipment. Most of my contemporaries are engaged in successful careers where they are working with important clients, clients that I too would like to have the opportunity to work with. I am ready to do better work that communicates and inspires, to take my work beyond the stage it is at now and into a wider audience. This trip to Russia is something I have been saving for, planning for and building up to for a long time and I purchased the plane ticket, knowing I want to do this now, when I am young enough and of the mindset to be in a position to travel comfortably and capitalize on the rewards of the journey. I am going there now. There is no turning back. I'll never forget my Dad, always hounding me with the famous Rabbinical saying, "If not now, when, Dan?" -NOW is the time. I won't have this opportunity again, for a long time, if ever, to go to this part of the world. The opportunity to create something unique that reflects my experience will be the greatest reward I can imagine after years of being an artist and a traveler. I am shoe-stringing this trip to Europe. The only thing I need to complete the project is this Camera. The journey brings it's own adventure, of which I will be cataloguing in an online video journal, that will keep investors updated on my travels and progress. The nice advantage of purchasing the Canon 5D, is that the HD video is of the finest caliber. Therein I will be able to shoot video of the trip, in addition to the fashion photographs and whatever other photographs I shoot during the experience, to present an even fuller picture to you on return.
The purpose of the book, outside of just creating powerful photographs and producing a lasting, iconographic work that represents a culture and my heritage, will be to eventually show to potential photo clients, photo agents and magazines to gain higher level, professional photo work. Having a book of editorial quality photos, of unique and striking subjects, will put me in a better position to have the opportunity to doing regular commercial and fashion photography work, in addition to taking the quality of my photographs to a whole new level.
The book itself will be a tome that represents an adventurous journey into an unknown and fascinating place, and a testament to the trip, these people and this time in my life. This will be my first published work. The photos will be timeless and represent Eastern European women, in a powerful and authentic style.
The total investment of $3335.30 ($2199 for the camera body, $2391.41 after tax+ $718.00, $780.82 after tax, for Canon EF 100mm lens + $149.95, $163.07 after tax, for a camera travel bag), will purchase the Canon 5D Mark II, one lens and travel-carry bag.
Investors, in addition to my deepest gratitude and the satisfaction of helping to create a lasting work, will receive a benefits package, depending on the size of the investment.
All investors will be given a password to a website that will have the video journal of the trip with daily updates of my progress. This footage may be edited later into a documentary of the trip, if warranted. This website will be run and maintained by my good friend and fellow photographer, Ivan Iannoli, who will be acting as web producer and correspondent.
Donations of $24 dollars or less will receive a password to the video website and a Thank You card featuring a signed, 5"x7" color reproduction of one of the photos from the book.
Donations of $25 - $50 will receive a password to the video website, a Thank You card and a signed, reproduction of a larger 8" x10" print.
Donations of between $50 and $100, will receive a password to the video website, a Thank You card and a signed, 11"x14" print of one of the prints from the book.
Donations of between $250 and $500, will receive a password to the video website, a Thank You card and a signed 11" x 14" framed print, of one of the photos from the book.
Donations of $500 or more, will receive a password to the video website, a Thank You card and a signed copy of the book.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR INTEREST AND ATTENTION.
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Pledge $24 or moreYou selected
Donations of $24 dollars or less will receive a password to the video website and a Thank You card featuring a signed, 5"x7" color reproduction of one of the photos from the book.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $25 or moreYou selected
Donations of $25 - $50 will receive a password to the video website, a Thank You card and a signed, reproduction of a larger 8" x10" print.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $100 or moreYou selected
Donations of $100.00 up to $249.00 will receive a password to the video website, a Thank You card and a signed, 11"x14" print of one of the prints from the book.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $250 or moreYou selected
Donations of $250 up to $499 will receive a password to the video website, a Thank You card and a signed 11" x 14" framed print, of one of the photos from the book.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $500 or moreYou selected
Donations of $500 or more, will receive a password to the video website, a Thank You card and a signed copy of the book.Estimated delivery:
- (11 days)