From the very beginning, Polaroids have been used not only for documenting school trips and crazy events. The uniqueness of the image created by what came to be called instant film was immediately appreciated by the masters of portraiture. Today, this beautiful trend in photography is continued by Miky Arsenjev from Prague, Czech Republic. His photos show the greatest of all subjects – the beauty of women. Check out his amazing work and the many insights he shared in our Hero of the Week feature!
Please tell us a little about yourself, where you are from, and what you do.
I’m 21, I’m from Prague, which is the capital of the Czech Republic, which is in Europe (some don’t know it, we’re small). I study film studies (that’s history and theory of cinema), and I also help out in a tiny store called Polagraph – we sell Polaroids and the film for it there.
How would you personally describe your style of photography? What message/s do you try to convey through your images?
I intend to be civil; I want people on my photographs to have their inner lives. I want to share beauty in impressions, to show it in its simplicity (yet complexity).
Which elements of shooting film are you drawn to the most?
The way it looks; digital can never overcome the magic of film.
What would you say is your greatest inspiration?
I believe that real (and often fleeting) encounter with charming women inspires me the most. The moment of fascination by something inexplicable, yet so strong and exhilarating, and the yearning of possibility to grasp it. Photographing means an active effort to take reality into your hands.
Name someone whose art makes you shiver.
Rob Spicer has some amazing Polaroids. Flickr
If you had to choose a camera + film to shoot with for the rest of your life, which combo would it be and why?
I use the same camera and same film all the time and I haven’t tried many other cameras nor films. I’m not sure though whether I’d take my SX-70, as the 35mm film is more practical after all.
If you could time travel to the past and be the assistant of a great photographer, who would it be?
Can you share the weirdest situation you’ve faced being a film photographer?
I don’t know. I feel weird whenever people pull out mobile phones to photograph things.
If you had to choose a movie that defines you both personally and aesthetically, which one would it be?
Many, let’s say My Life As a Dog (Mitt liv son hund, 1985).
Do you remember the photo you took that made you feel proud for the first time? Can you share it with us?
I remember the first sharp Polaroid was a great relief.
Describe your shooting routine.
We meet, we go to my place, and I seat her by the window. I watch her through the viewfinder until I know that’s it, or until I realize it will never be it and I rather push the shutter release to not make her feel bad.
Speaking of portraits, who’s the face you’d love to photograph but haven’t had the chance to have in front of your camera yet?
Lots of nameless beauties I pass on streets.
Who do you think we should feature in the next Hero of the Week section?
Have you featured Daniel Gonzalez?
See more of Miky’s work in the links below: