Boris Lozhkin – Entrepreneur, Philanthropist and Author
I had the opportunity to collaborate with Ukrainian Entrepreneur, Philanthropist and Author Boris Lozhkin a few months back. We did a series of headshots for editorial usage. And as with most high profile individuals I work with, I often don’t want to know too much of their background before we shoot. Mainly, because this gives me something to talk about with them during the shoot, but also because I don’t ever want to find myself in “fanboy” mode.
Boris was a treat to work with, as when I asked him what type of music he’d like to listen to while we worked, he replied with a nonchalant, “Oh, just about anything. You choose.” … I asked him what his thoughts were on Slayer. To my delight, he not only knew who Slayer was, but shrugged his shoulders and said, “Sure, why not?”
Thus our first round of lighting tests involved a backdrop of the band’s 1986 classic, Raining Blood. Not exactly the soundtrack I was going for, but I loved the fact that Boris was up for anything. One of the reasons I always ask subjects about that type of music they’d like to hear is that I can get a pretty good gauge of where they’re at at that particular time and space. If a request comes in for Mozart, I know I’m going to go in one direction. If Miles Davis comes into question, we’re going a slightly different direction, and when the client says, “You choose,” and I go completely left field and they run with me … well then I know that this is going to go in just about any direction I can pull them.
In the end, I think we settled in with some Jack Johnson, and went through a series of looks, outfits, and poses.
Of every image we produced, this one stands out to me the most. I asked Boris to take a seat and decided to go with a charcoal grey background. Noticing that he has incredible posture, I asked Boris to just hang on a minute while I fiddled with some camera settings. This is a method I like to use, as the subject doesn’t really realise that what I’m going for here is to capture them at a natural moment. One where they’re not actively being photographed. The result speaks volumes.
In this one image, I believe I captured Boris’s power and approachability in one shot. He’s commanding, but not untouchable. Solid and strong, but also open and vulnerable. In other words, truly human.