Alter-View explores extremes in all possible forms and varieties. This is why we interview photographers from around the world, whose creative vision resonates with our ideas of extreme. Be that inner world expressed by an artist or the outer world in captured by an experienced travel photographer – we’re happy to spotlight the work we appreciate. This helps us build a vibrant international community and broaden our own creative thinking.
Her photography brings you to the edge of the surreal, and even a brief look at her images immerses into the eerie world of unconscious. With her series Bulgarian artist and photographer Mira Nedyalkova speaks about love, pain, life and death, sexuality and elusive nature of beauty. She is brave enough to shed the light to the hidden and intimate sides of human nature. Together with Mira we dived deeper into the dreamy ocean of her creativity.
How did you become a photographer?
I first came into the world of photography as a model when I was 18 years old. I have always loved photography as art, but I for a long time I used to choose drawing over it. Later in 2007, I discovered photography as a means to express myself, and it completely replaced painting. My pictures are not exactly photographs. I do a lot of editing in Photoshop and my creations are somewhere in between paintings and photography. Both arts for me are very similar and interrelated. Frankly, I discover and chose for myself photography when I found out about the existence of Photoshop and the potential that it brings. It is an unbelievable instrument that opened for me an opportunity to connect painting and photography into one.
How did you find your unique style?
I think that with time and a lot of experimentation, an artist finds their own style sooner or later. In my style I express myself and through it I talk about my inner world. I think this is truly important for an artist – to follow their own style, to be unique and recognizable for of it.
Who and what influences you artistically?
As I said, I used to draw when I was younger. At that time I was impressed by Cezanne and his painting technique. In the later stage, when my life began moving to photography I was greatly affected by Egon Schiele and Klimt. Looking into their drawings, I got to know myself, I felt like a part of them. I realized that this is what I needed and what excited me – namely, love and eroticism, beauty and pain. I must also mention the photographer whose influence was really huge and crucial for my work. This is a Czech photographer Jan Saudek. He opened my eyes to the ethereal beauty of the flesh and to the fact that we have to learn to perceive and accept pain, joy, beauty and imperfections as a whole.
Your pictures seem to demand a lot of effort at the stage of production. How do you usually prepare and arrange everything for your photosets? How much time does a shooting take?
It’s different every time. Sometimes I decide to shoot spontaneously and organize everything very quickly – in a day. When I do that, I like to improvise. I usually either not use any props or just repurpose old ones, from previous projects. Alternatively, I start out with a whole concept, with fully formed ideas for my projects. In these cases I start preparing earlier because I need to find specific clothing and objects, as well as a suitable model. I usually shoot for about 4-5 hours, but this, of course, includes coffee, water and chocolate breaks.
Does post-production demand much time and effort for the images you create, as they look so artistically elaborate?
I edit my images, which really takes a lot more time than the shooting itself, and for me this is the best moment which gives me satisfaction. Using Photoshop gives me the opportunity to transform reality into fantasy. I love experimenting with Photoshop and look for new techniques to realize my ideas fully.
Do you have a creative routine?
I don’t like having anything routine in the process of the creation. In my opinion, there is no place for routine in art. Art and routine simply do not go hand in hand.
Do you support strong connections with your fans on the internet or are you an ‘introverted' artist?
I think I’m more of an introverted artist. Of course, I enjoy it when my photos have success and people like them, but this is not the most important thing to me. I create art because I feel the need to create it. This is my way of looking deep inside of me and sharing what I find there with the world. Creating my photographs is therapeutic for me.
What do you strive to achieve in creative sense in the upcoming years?
In my photography (now and in the future), I transmit pain as beauty, eroticism as a phenomenon of human psychology. I express myself and my intimate inner life. In my photographs you would find beauty and strong will for life, sorrow and pain, love and sexuality as constants… I like to fuse all this in a single image, because I believe this is the way to start knowing life, to accept it and perhaps love it for what it is (or it is not).
To find more of Mira's works, go to her website: