Greta’s photography drew my attention when I was randomly browsing through Danish creatives’ portfolios on Behance.net. Greta Tuckute has already received several awards for creative photography work (Environmental Photographer of the Year 2011 – Highly Commended; Picture of the Year 2011 – Modelportalen.dk, etc.) and this spring her nature and travel themed pictures are exhibited in Margrethekirken, Aalborg. Feminine figures, fade-outs and contrasting pictures seemed to be something authentic and I had an instant need to interview this young photographer from Aalborg.
Please tell me a little bit about yourself. Who you are? What do you do? And how come you live in Denmark?
My name is Greta, and I am eighteen years old. Right now I am a photographer and a student. I was born in Lithuania, Kaunas, however my parents decided to move to Denmark when I was two years old. They only planned to stay for three months, however it didn’t completely turn out that way. Sixteen years in Denmark and still counting.
How long you’ve been taking up photography?
Approximately seven years. Once I found a diary where I enthusiastically described receiving my first point-and-shoot camera at the age of eleven. My favorite subjects were seashells and flowers. I could keep shooting those things for weeks and weeks. I have to say; luckily a few things have happened since then. My interest evolved at the age of thirteen and I had my first photo shoot with a model and a make-up artist. I was terrified and couldn’t sleep the night before. Things have changed. I sleep a bit better now before the photoshoots.
What is you favorite situation to take photos?
I plan and research a lot. I guess that is in my nature. I can’t stop making plans and lists – sometimes it is really helpful, but it also bothers me from time to time! I love having an idea and then improvising smaller things. My ideal location would be a desolate place with dramatic weather.
Do you find Denmark inspiring for your photography?
I think I mostly find the Danish people, culture and the approach to aesthetics inspiring for my work. It has influenced my work a lot! Sometimes I tend to get inspired by the raw and cold Danish landscape, however I mainly shoot nature abroad.
Who would be the person you would like to take photo of if you could?
Kate Moss aged twenty. Her features and personality are extremely unique, and I would be honored to portray her! Also, I would love to shoot one of the oldest people in the world – though showing an entire life through a photograph is a tough challenge.
I’ve noticed few attributes of your photography style. There is usually a female figure taking a role and a special play of contrasting lighting, which in my eyes creates an effect of mystique. Why woman?
Yes, I mainly shoot women. It’s not a deliberate choice; it’s simply what seems most natural to me. I have been doing so many various things throughout the past few years, but I never loose interest in portraiture. Basically it’s what makes me most happy and I’m always really eager about shooting new and interesting portraits! I absolutely love unique features as for instance a dazzling eye-color, freckles or special facial contours.
What is your guilty pleasure?
I really don’t know. When I feel guilt or shame, it is not connected to pleasures – then I am sincerely sorry. Obviously I could say things like spending way too much time on photography blogs, eating three slices of greasy chocolate cake or lying in my bed for hours doing nothing. However if I enjoy these things, I would never call them “guilty pleasures”. Simply “pleasures”.
Would you say that photography is your “simple pleasure”?
No, definitely not. Photography is my greatest passion and indeed one of my major pleasures as well. However I would not call it a “simple pleasure”. Photography makes me absurdly happy, but just as many other things that make you happy, it also troubles me. It might be an odd comparison, but if you are really in love with somebody, it both gives you great pleasure as well as the opposite.
Do you have an unwritten rule you always keep or a motto?
I always try to be engaged and passionate about projects, jobs, and appointments – no matter what it is. I think it is significant not to waste other people’s time, nor my own.
Are you a fan of challenges? What was your latest challenge?
I have done a 52 weeks project. I enjoyed it a lot, however it was tough from time to time! I had to come up with a new project every single week for a year. Now I really like doing bigger and more considerate projects. Sometimes you need time to come up with something that you are satisfied with. I always try to challenge myself and do not stay in my comfort zone.
What is a 52 weeks project?
It is a project where you have to come up with a new project or photograph every single week for a year. Of course it can be anything – pictures of something extremely ordinary – but I tried to set a relatively high standard. I would say I improved a lot during that year.
What’s your favorite time of the day?
Definitely morning. I love breakfast. I love reading books or newspapers in the morning. I love the feeling of a new day. Sometimes even the thought of mornings fills me with an immense happiness.
Thank you, Greta, for your honest answers. Fameiva wishes you to always have challenges and satisfying accomplishments ahead. Never lose that immense happiness, strength, freedom and independence. Good luck!
You can see more of Greta’s photography here: