My name is Dragos Ioneanu, I am a fine art photographer based in Copenhagen, Denmark specialised in B&W photography and subjects like architecture and seascapes/landscapes.
My main two projects are “Geometry in motion” – an architectural one and “White sea” – a collection of seascapes. I call them together “Water and steel”. They are like yin and yang, so different and so interconnected in my photographic work, one symbolising the calm of the sea and the other the chaos of the city.
“Geometry in motion” is a project that presents modern architecture using a fine art approach. It resides in my background, in both my past and the interactions with geometry during school periods and in the present with my recent fascination for modern architecture. The project is my own view about architecture: I choose to show details, shapes and angles rather then entire buildings. My photography does not have a documentary role, it does not intend to show the viewers how a particular building is looking like, how it is placed in its surrounding; instead it offers them a projection of the architectural structure filtered through my vision. The buildings in my work are placed in a hyper reality. I start with the reality, the building itself as designed by architect and built by the constructors, and move it into my hyper reality in four simple steps:
– firstly I try to discover the soul of the building, some composition that is, in the same time, revealing a lot and hiding a lot. Like some people thought in the past that by taking a picture of someone you take his/her soul, thats what I am trying to do with the buildings I am shooting
– I use long exposure technique; the passage of time is in contrast with the stillness of the structures; the clouds on the sky become simple stripes of shadow and light, negative space for the building
– I use B&w conversion, removing the realism given by the colour; it might be that photography existed only in monochrome in the past, but we all see in colour, and a B&W conversion can be a level of abstractization for many people
– I paint the light in post processing, revealing shapes, planes and interactions between architectural elements. I dodge and burn to attract attention of the viewer to some particular elements with the help of strong contrasts
With these steps, I transform the architecture work into my vision. The project features architecture from Copenhagen, Malmo, Berlin, London and Athens and I plan to add more in the next few years.
“White sea” is a project were I try to keep a high homogeneity between the bodies of work by carefully selected subjects, mood, similar processing approaches with a focus on very light tones.
The whole thing started in the spring of 2013, while on holiday in UK. After couple of days spent in London, I was feeling very tired of the whole urban rush, almost claustrophobic. Having some day trips on the picturesque coast of UK, I felt like escaping from a big chaotic city into an idyllic place. It is true that a lot of people hate the moody weather of UK, but the clouds and fog that the coastline offered, together with lots of minimalist subjects was just perfect; a photographic heaven. So peaceful, so serene and so simple; that’s exactly what this series is all about: a celebration of the incommensurable beauty of the sea. The series continued later this year in Scandinavia, adding some interesting locations from Sweden and Denmark and I plan in the near future to return to the origins: a new photographic trip covering UK coastline. All along the series I am using long exposure technique, which has the role of removing the texture from the water and from the sky, simplifying the scene to a minimum amount of essential elements. The long exposure technique has also an additional role, quite important: it slows me down. I am not snapping back and forth anymore, I am taking my time to think the shot and to prepare it. And while waiting for the exposure minutes to pass, I can enjoy the nature, I can visualise the final presentation of the image or dream about the next shots. It is the perfect combination of my love for nature with the one for photography.
I am a Nikon guy, I used to shoot with a D7000, but I recently switched to a full-frame, a D800. All my images are captured digitally. I am really careful to get them in the camera as close as possible to my final vision, hence I am using a variety of ND , gradual ND or polarising filters to achieve the best possible starting raw file. But the post processing part is equally as important. I spend a lot of time tweaking various elements of the frame or sometimes just starring at my screen, analysing the image, trying to judge it as objective as possible. Some images can be processed in an hour, other might require couple of weeks, sometimes starting from the scratch when I figure out they do not turn out how I envisioned them. For the post processing part Photoshop is my best friend; I can’t imagine my work without it. It gives me so much freedom of creation and it is the perfect tool in making the step from idea to the final result.
2013 was a great year from photographic perspective as I got confirmation of my work by being awarded at various major competitions: International Photography Awards, Prix de Photographie Paris, International Fine Art Photography Awards and some other. It was also the year when my photographic path for the near future has been settled (or at least thats how I think at the moment). In 2014 I plan to travel as much as my full time job allows me, starting with a 10 days trip in the spring on the UK south coast that I felt in love with last year. Other than that, I have a hundred of destinations in mind, just waiting to be visited and photographed. [Official Website]