Eni Turkeshi is a very talented digital and analogue photographer from Albania. She creates haunting yet incredibly intriguing images that makes the viewer want to take a closer look. This post features some of her amazing work that she developed using different types of alternative printing process. Read on and discover the other side of photography in this inspiring interview.
Interview with Eni Turkeshi
Hello Eni! First of all, thank you for letting us have this interview. We’d like to know more about you. Can you tell us something about yourself?
Thanks for your invitation Ivy. I am Eni , an Albanian visual artist. I started my artistic works with photography which is my main passion, but I find myself day by day more and more included in alternating my works and visualizing them by using different media.
How and when did your love for photography begin?
Basically, since I was a kid. I was always interested in photos. There was something I couldn`t tell that took me all time to spend lots of time staring at photos even at totally random family photos. To me it was fun to have a look at all the details. I could see people that were waiting to have a look at the album getting impatient and asking why it was taking me so much time to look at a simple albumJ. Well, because it was fun J. With time I found out about the Flickr page and then started to share photos taken with my first digital camera which was my mobile phone Nokia 7610 ;) Flickr has a very important place in my photography adventure start. But as I said my love for photography started since I was a kid, even though I wasn`t very much aware of itJ.
What inspires you to capture an image?
From the most usual to the most unusual things/elements. I tend to create images of things which affect me emotionally or visually.
Are there certain emotions or feelings that you like to highlight in your images?
As I said above, it`s not always known what will affect me, let it be positive or negative emotion. I`d like to be more instinctive sometimes in my life and do things I want to do without analyzing so much, so that the magic won`t get vaporized. I think I`m more successful being so when it comes to images ;)
What tools of the trade do you use most often?
I use both digital and analogue mediums. I`d like to focus more on analogue and experiment more with it but for the moment I don`t have access to any darkroom, so the most I can do without it is developing my films myself. On my digital imagery I use Photoshop, though I `m not the brightest Photoshop user. I only use some of the basic editing tools. I mainly work with color editing since I love colors; they are like a therapy to me. I use a Canon 40D and a broken lens Canon Ixus 6.0 which does some weird effects after the lens accidentJ As per analogue I own a Canon 500 n, lomo Smena 8M, Minolta and one hand made pinhole camera.
You love developing photographs using alternative printing processes, where did this love start from?
Since I had the chance to try it ! It`s pure magic and gives you some more options of creating, let it be in the darkroom or outside. Also because of curiosity for the old printing techniques and the past experiences, but this time I prefer to bring them back blended with nowadays innovative experiences and possibilities, enriching it and making it morph into something else…
Which printing process do you think produced the best output so far?
I had my very first print of liquid emulsion to come out perfectly! So I developed a strong affection for it. Then trying to hand tint my liquid emulsion prints was another good experience and new infatuation. I had also good results with bromoil, a technique I adore and cyanotype.
“Medusal Mood” is a haunting yet beautiful series. Can you tell us about your inspiration and process in creating these images?
The story of Medusa and different legends and associations about her have always intrigued me. I had first seen her sculpture in Istanbul, at Yerebatan Cistern. The images in my series consist of self portraits mixed in Photoshop with Turkish coffee patterns images. I had several reasons to use those patterns. Firstly because visually it connotates Medusa`s hair. Secondly,as many of us know the Turkish coffee patterns are famous in fortune telling. If we look back at the story of Medusa, she used to be a pretty girl with wonderful hair. After being cursed by the goddess Athena, her fortune totally changed and her hair turned into terrible snakes , while her face became incredibly ugly so each person that would stare at her would get stoned. So I symbolized the coffee patterns with the ways of destiny. At the same time Medusa is also known as a symbol of nihilism and negotiation of many meaningful aspects of life. The whole final imagery connotates not a very optimistic determinism on facts we can`t change however we try to escape from them and the final way we choose to live with it.
What keeps you busy now? Any projects that you’re working on right now?
I am all the time creating new projects. Some of them which I’ve been thinking for a long time , some of them instinctive ones coming out in a very short time out of some unknown inspiration or because of the wish to try new things or techniques. I have plans and am working on trying different techniques or create new ones by blending what I know, as well as practicing more on mixed media technique which fascinates me big time.
Any advice for our readers?
Just follow your thoughts/feelings and create the things the way you wish to, without thinking too much on other’s opinions. I believe one should be ready to justify one art piece to their selves or their muses/ reasons for creating, before trying to please others.