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“Yes. For me, this movement is purely about a very close community,” says action photographer Ugnė Vedeckytė. She continues, “it’s about street culture and our instincts: the need for self-realization, challenging ourselves, and our need to constantly move.” In her latest series, Vedeckytė aimed to communicate all that Parkour is through a range of action-filled images. It’s something a little different from what we’re used to, partially because of the fisheye effect. Naturally, we were excited to share it with you. So lock yourself in, and don’t worry about jumping off any walls or rooftops. This interview will give you all the thrill and adrenaline you need!
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The Photography Gear of Ugnė Vedeckytė
I try not to limit myself to one type of camera or one way of making photographs. I use a couple of film cameras, and right now I have the Sony a6400 for my digital camera. When I want to get film-like results with my digital camera, I use vintage lenses. I mainly use wide-angle lenses for my action photography.
This setup works for me because whenever I’m working on anything creative, one of the main goals is to experiment as much as possible. Things like cameras, lenses, the environment, and people are all part of the creative process that keeps me passionate about what I’m doing.— Ugnė Vedeckytė
Phoblographer: Hey, Ugnė! Please tell us how you started in photography.
Ugnė Vedeckytė: I believe everything started around five years ago, when I was really getting interested in film photography. My curiosity led me to borrow various Zenit cameras from a friend. In the beginning, I couldn’t be more excited about taking various photos, even without really having many skills or knowledge about how to do so. Instead, I was just enjoying the whole process and then waiting for the film results to come up.
My progress in photography came because of the better shots I made, as they showed me what type of visual results I could achieve. The bad images I made helped me understand what I can do differently next time I shoot.
Phoblographer: Please tell us how this Parkour series started.
Ugnė Vedeckytė: The concept of the parkour photoshoot had been in my head for a long time. When you are a part of a local parkour community, and you’re among all those skilled people jumping around in the streets so creatively, a constant need to document all of it just exists. So one day, when my David (who has practiced Parkour for 13 years) and I felt ready for the photo shoot, we just had to make it.
Phoblographer: Did you have a plan for what you would shoot, or did you just go with the flow?
Ugnė Vedeckytė: Honestly, I just had a vision of a wide-angled black and white photo series that enhances the power of movement and synergy between light and shadows.
Phoblographer: What did you enjoy the most about the project?
Ugnė Vedeckytė: In general, the idea of contributing to street culture, documenting, and translating it to society through photography. That was enough for me to feel satisfied with the result.
Phoblographer: What was the biggest challenge?
Ugnė Vedeckytė: Finding the best angles to shoot from, I guess. However, we just improvised through the whole process, so when there were no specific expectations, there was no big stress about making something in a perfect way.
Phoblographer: One photo shows your subject jumping in four different steps. Would you please share how you created this image?
Ugnė Vedeckytė: Of course. So, I made the image by using continuous shooting mode on my digital camera and editing software. While the subject made that big jump, I caught multiple shots from it. After selecting the best poses from the shots, I gathered them into one single image using photoshop.
Phoblographer: Tell us a bit more about what other interests you have in the photography field.
Ugnė Vedeckytė: I shoot anything from everyday life to abstract, experimental concepts. I’m feeling really unstable and uncertain about my needs, but that’s what makes it more interesting. I never know where I am going with it.
Phoblographer: What are your photography goals for the future?
Ugnė Vedeckytė: So as I mentioned before, there’s nothing really specific – just to create and to be involved in as many photography projects as I physically and mentally can. This way, my skills can grow, and my perception of photography can evolve.
Phoblographer: Finally, if photography were a person you could speak to, what would you tell it?
Ugnė Vedeckytė: Thank you for existing, old man. You helped so many people in such different ways.
All images by Ugnė Vedeckytė. Used with permission.