Interview with Peter Zarkob
TIFA 2021 Non-Professional Event Photographer of the Year, “Resiliencia”
Q: Tell us a bit about your background? How did you discover your love for photography?
I started working as a graphic designer, specialising in the design of logos and Corporate Identity manuals. This stage allowed me to deepen in the principles of “minimalism”, mainly in the ability to abstract an idea and associate it to a graphic expression.
Applying these principles, I began to collaborate in “advertising campaigns”, specifically in the “positioning” of products through images. This is when I discovered my passion for photography, its potential and its ability to transform an object into a “concept”.
Q: What was your last work and how did the initial spark of inspiration come about?
During the confinement by Covid, I had the opportunity to photograph the architecture of my city from another perspective. Empty cities, without movement, without circulation Now the architecture no longer interacted with people but was the protagonist, showing us its essence and enveloping us in a unique atmosphere.
Q: You were awarded TIFA 2021 Non-Professional Event Photographer of the Year for your powerful image, Resiliencia, a bird’s eye view of a rower. Can you tell us a bit more about the technical details of this photograph?
This photograph was taken from a bridge where I usually walk. The scene of the rowers always caught my attention, because of the high contrast of the image, the movement, the geometry,…
After analysing the image, I had a clear idea of the composition and I set up my camera with “black and white” film simulation, high speed, medium aperture, and I modified the ISO according to the intensity of the daylight. I made several tests to adjust the parameters properly and then I set the “burst” mode to capture all the movements of the scene in detail. Finally, a lot of patience and waiting for the moment.
Q: When it comes to event photography, which occasions do you enjoy capturing the most?
Due to the tradition of rowing in my city, it is common to see this kind of scenes throughout the year, which is why it has become my favourite event photography. This sporting discipline allows me to capture unique moments in which the values of sport are reflected: effort, resilience, perseverance…
Q: What does winning this award mean to you?
I was very excited, I really didn’t expect it. It has meant a before and after, as I have always had many concerns that I wanted to express in photographic projects but, due to lack of time, I had never been able to develop them. From now on I want to focus on photography and, if possible, dedicate myself exclusively to this profession.
Q: What would be your dream project in photography if there would be no budget limits and you could travel anywhere, photograph anything/anyone?
We currently live in a visually saturated but conceptually empty society. My project would consist of making “thematic series” based on existentialist approaches and how these are interpreted from different cultures. The aim would be to arouse the viewer’s curiosity and make them reflect on questions inherent to the human condition.
Q: Which professional photographers have inspired you most?
I am passionate about the classics of photography such as Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, Michael Kenna, Robert Doisneau, Elliott Erwitt, but also, since I was a child, I have always been attracted by the work of painters such as Edward Hopper, René Magritte, Giorgio de Chirico…
At the moment I am delving into the work of contemporary photographers who fuse both disciplines: painting and photography.
Q: Are you working on something new right now? Can you tell us a little bit about it?
I am currently collecting information about settings and monuments that represent events that changed the history of mankind. I would like to offer a personal vision of these places and invite the viewer, from abstract minimalism, to reflect on these historical events and what we should learn from them.