4 minute read

The Observation Project

We tend to forget the essence of photography, with the rise of the selfie philosophy, we have become more obsessed with achieving perfection rather than just appreciating the moment. Photography is a way for us to capture these moments and to remember the beautiful things surrounding us.

Olivia Solodko’s, ‘The Observation Project’, reminds us of that very essence. Olivia is able to identify the ‘perfect moments’ in a setting, which is normally considered ‘ugly’. All of her images are taken on her journeys and they all tell a different story.

Unlike many photographers, she doesn’t seek an opportunity to capture something, she just stumbles upon it. She finds beauty in the unconventional and the unfamiliar, and she certainly has an eye for capturing life in its natural glory.

FARID aims to present the work in its original voice, Olivia Solodko explains her work:

My photographs tend to focus on scenery that has presented itself in a, particularl humble way. Often times, the environment of everyday life speaks for itself. Photography becomes a way to capture it in a way that makes it appealing to those who normally wouldn’t take notice. I aim to capture the time between the ‘important’ moments, whether it be a visual coincidence, an interaction, or something picturesque, in a place no one would normally give any attention to.

Alternatively, my subject matter also holds a sense of anonymity. This relates to the feeling of unfamiliarity we feel within our memories of public spaces we’ve seen in the past. They have no meaning to us at the time, but looking back, we see them as anchors of times that have past, giving them a weight that wouldn’t normally exist outside of the hazy memory context. Many of my own memories are beyond my understanding, but evoke a sentimental feeling even still.

These seemingly trivial moments have given way to a world of parallels (both visual and theoretical). They present opportunities of “depth” that can be explored in either a creative or philosophical manner, depending on how they are interpreted by the viewer. In a fleeting street setting, photography becomes a reflection of one’s own thoughts, tastes and worries at that space in time.

The beauty in every day has become a continuous exploration of mine, with and without the use of a camera. I’ve only recently developed an interest in photography, but I’ve always had a particular appreciation for unplanned beauty. I use the lens as a frame for these moments and hope to improve my scope of observation as I continue to shoot.

My photos happen to coincide with my miscellaneous structure of living. I’ve always had a love affair with unfamiliar environments, having moved cities three times in the last year alone. Consistent changes have made me particularly aware and appreciative of my surroundings. The everyday scenery, no matter how seemingly mundane it may be, can be transformed when captured in a certain way or from a specific angle. I enjoy making use of the ephemeral moments in my day-to-day undertakings, capturing them in a way that allows others to appreciate them as well.

Photography by Olivia Solodko