We are very proud and honored to present our new member. The Greek master of shadows and light, the teacher from western Macedonia, Full Frontals representative in the Thermaic Gulf, the one and only Stavros Stamatiou!
Welcome to Full Frontal Stavros, we’re happy to have you with us.
Tell us a bit about yourself
I come from Greece and I’m 56 years old. I have three wonderful children and a grandchild, the light of my life. I have worked as a primary school teacher since 1988. I currently live in Peraia, a suburb of Thessaloniki, a place that I came to love because of photography.
When did you start with photography and more importantly when and why did you start to use a flash?
From the time I was a student I remember myself using my father’s camera. I have always been interested in the arts, mostly music, literature, paintings and, of course, the movies and I always thought that photography could be a way to express myself.
It took me a lot of time, however, to unlock its secrets. I had to study the work of the masters of photography and at the same time I had to work on an almost every day basis to achieve it. But the most important condition was that, since I rarely travel, I practiced photography at the same places, in a range of 20 kilometers around my home. Taking pictures of the same things over and over again in every possible light condition helped me to pass gradually underneath the surface of things. I managed to use my camera not as a photocopier of the world but as a mirror, to use fragments of space and time, these little pieces of reality, in order to talk about myself.
For several years I was studying the natural light and I had chosen to work exclusively with it. My need to deepen my approach led me to expand my expressive means. So it was about ten years ago that I started experimenting with my on-camera flash and/or with low shutter speed, with or without a tripod. As it turned out, it was not only a thrilling experience but also a tool with unlimited potential, which I have never stopped using since.
Could you describe your photographic style?
I believe that I have developed a personal style over the years, but I am not sure that I can describe it in words. I enjoy when people who are familiar with my photography can recognize my new pictures even before they see my name under them.
Show us some of your work with flash and tell us something about them.
Thanks Stavros and again, welcome to Full Frontal Flash -we are really looking forward to have you in our collective.