A while back I got in contact with Gueorgui Tcherednitchenko thanks to Charlie Kirk. His photos stood out to me as he was based in Tokyo at the time and made a difference from all the other western based street photographers. With the release of his new Zine I asked him if he’d care to share a few things and he graciously accepted…I then forgot to get the post published…but here it it.
I would make a lousy superhero, but if you want to know how I got started with photography, here’s how. Back in 2004 or so, I had a compact digital point and shoot (It was a Canon Ixus, if I remember correctly), so I signed up for Flickr to have somewhere to upload pictures I took in my daily life. Those were mostly of my girlfriend and my uni mates. After a while of browsing Flickr, I came across Tommy Oshima’s photos and was blown away by what photography can do. A couple of months later, I bought a broken Leica M4 from eBay, got it fixed up, and started putting film through it.
Why did you sign up for a MA in photography?
There isn’t a single huge reason, but a few that contributed to the decision. One reason was that I wanted to learn to talk and write about my work, and actually applying for the MA was an exercise in that (I didn’t really think I would be accepted). Another reason was that I wanted to spend a long stretch of time focusing on photography only, and doing it in the context of an art school seemed like a good framework. Being around other photography students was attractive too. Finally, I was feeling really stuck in my career as a software engineer, and I needed a serious change of pace.
What do you look for in a good photo?
This is something I think about a lot, but it’s still quite hard for me to articulate. I’m for sure looking for a level of technical quality and good composition, but the most important thing for me is that the photo shows or hints at some kind of truth. You could also call this an emotional component or something like this. I recently came across a verse from the British poet John Keats, saying that beauty is truth, and truth is beauty (I’m paraphrasing). This seems like as good a definition as any for what I’m looking for in a good photo.
What’s your favourite photobook or Photo?
It keeps changing… my current favourite is Luo Yang’s book “Girls”. I’m completely in love with her work ever since I discovered it last year, and it got me really interested in Chinese photography, which in turn feels like opening a treasure chest: there’s some incredible work being done in China these days.
What are you working on now?
I’m mostly working on my dissertation these days, but in parallel I’m working on a portraiture project about one-sided love stories that I started back in November. I find people who are living through such stories, and I photograph them in places that are emotionally related to their relationship. You can see a few pictures from the project at http://www.gueorgui.net/crush; there will probably eventually be a book, but that’s ways down the road.
Thanks Gueorgui Tcherednitchenkofor taking part.
Also published on Medium.