Photographer Interview: Sandra Ivaz

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Sandra Ivaz, I’m a 21 year old university student studying political science. Photography is a hobby of mine, for now at least… I’d definitely love to make it a career in the future. I’m always the happiest when I’m shooting.

How did you get started in photography?

I’ve actually been taking photos since I was a child, but I never really understood why I was doing it until about two years ago when it all clicked into place.

When I was a kid, my family would go on vacations in Southern Europe, and while they’d be taking family photos I’d be snapping pics of mountains, beaches, city alleys, etc. I’d come home with hundreds of photos from my travels but I didn’t know what I was supposed to do with those photos. Fast forward to 2014, I downloaded Instagram and I began posting landscape photos shot with my phone, I quickly grew a following on Instagram, and my photography progressed from cityscapes and landscapes, to portraiture.

What do you like about your photography?

I have a strange relationship with my photos. I think most photographers feel this way at some point. 95% of the time I’m entirely unsatisfied with my work and the remainder of the time I’m like, “Wow, I love this.” I look at my photos more than anyone else, so I start to notice things that other people don’t. It’s kind of like, if you say a word 100 times you start to forget the meaning of the word or how to pronounce it.

But if I had to choose one thing, it would be that my photos – mainly the portraits – are full of emotion. While I’m not in the photos myself, I can remember exactly how I felt and what I was thinking whenever I look at any photo I’ve taken, regardless of how long ago the photo was shot.

Your work is very sensual and personal, and not just the portraits. Where do you get inspiration for your style/ideas?

I really enjoy shooting in black and white. I feel that the subject matter I shoot is desexualized when shot in black and white. Some of the photos I’ve taken, if left in colour, would be too sexually charged (in my opinion). I think converting photos to black and white removes the human element and makes the photo have a deeper meaning than just what’s seen at face value.

My moods influence my style and ideas a lot. I think the best ideas come to me when I’m feeling extreme emotions, be it positive or negative. I also find inspiration in unusual places (or at least unrelated to my subject matter) like free skiing documentaries, lol.

What kinds of themes do you explore with your work?

Femininity and the female form. While I know  that it has been done before, I want my photos to tell a story and for my work to be distinguishable from other artists.

Any upcoming projects or shoots you’re working on?

Not that I’m aware of, haha. I rarely plan ahead, most of my shoots have been spontaneous. I’m very impulsive so whenever an idea comes to mind, I need to do it as soon as possible.

Find more of Sandra’s work at @kninvu, and on her Instagram account