“Just be brave and do whatever it takes to make your dream happen. Don’t be shy and ask everything, everywhere, everyone. Don’t think that the most important thing is to have great equipment, the best tools etc. Yes, that’s important, but the main things you need to use are your eyes, hands, body, your brain and soul- that is what creates art.”
Tajana Dedić Starović- Artist At Camera
Digital Artist and Photographer
Tajana Dedić-Starović is a 23 year old Digital Artist and Photographer whose artistic pseudonym is Artist At Camera. She is from Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina and first got into photography about seven years ago. It started at first as an interesting hobby for Tajana, and developed into a real passion and a potential for a career. Her works explore the world through through her creative lens and create completely new surroundings. Tajana mainly uses photography, but usually combines this with digital manipulation, to create unique conceptual pieces of art. The main themes she explores in her work are femininity and sexuality, but also everyday situations and daily routines presented in different and distorted ways. A large part of her work contains a series of self-portraits- an ongoing self-exploring project which tests the concept of self. All of these themes are usually permeated with some obscure and edgy feelings, as this is the feel Tajana likes to communicate with her work. In her spare time, when she doesn’t carry around her camera, Tajana studies psychology. Read on to find out more.
Tell us about your visual art and photography and how you got started.
I started about 7 years ago, when I got my first compact digital camera. All that was very naive in the beginning, I started shooting the world around me and taking pictures of people, the environment, nature and everyday life. As the time was passing by, my approach to the objects of interest was more and more stable and solid. Eventually, I found my own style which evolves all the time and becomes even more precise and unique. My work is usually permeated with some obscure and edgy feelings, because I like to keep it creepy.
Who has helped you in the process of following your dream?
The decision to start following your dream is something very odd and strange, especially in the surroundings where I come from. So, if you don’t have the right support and certain help, you will probably have a hard time, unfortunately. Luckily, I had a great support from my family and friends. Even when I had some bad periods, when I wanted to give up, those people always encouraged me and that is very important. I am very grateful for that.
What inspires you?
I believe that the creative process, creative work is just like any other work – You can’t just wait for the inspiration to come to you, you just have to work all the time in order to keep that creative flow working. Of course, something should inspire you, but it can be something completely irrelevant for someone who is not an artist, for example, but you will see the artist going crazy over it. Those are just the joys of the creative process and the main difference between regular jobs and creative work. Of course, I also get inspired, and that is usually by some regular things and daily routines and situations, but I always try to make something new and different out of it.
What challenges have you encountered and how have you overcome them?
Maybe the biggest challenge I have encountered during the time was working with real people, human beings, models, call it what you want. I had a huge problem with that because it is really awkward when you have someone in front of you and you need to manipulate them, but it is not an object, it is real person. But once I decided to start, I just overcame that, and got even more confident in my photography work.
What message are you trying to share with your work?
I prefer that the viewer himself finds the specific message in my work. If I have something to say that is connected with specific work, I usually write it or say it while showcasing my work, but I always let the spectators find what they want in it, because that is the purpose of art, to make you feel something, it’s not up to the artist to define the specific feeling, it is just to present his point of view.
How do you deal with criticism ?
Well, there will always be people who will like your work and have positive comments about it, then people who definitely won’t like your work and only have negative comments. But then, there are people who don’t have to like or dislike your work, but will give you constructive criticism and these are the best critics you can get. So, I don’t bother with purely negative comments, I try to find something constructive in them, if not, I don’t really care, but I enjoy constructive critics very much, because it is the way to learn something new and to get even more better.
Why do you love your work?
Probably because it feels great when you see your own piece of art, when it’s finished and when you know that in that one visual object is a part of you, part of your soul, mind, thoughts, ideas. I get really excited when I make a good photo, complete in both a visual and conceptual way, and also, when it carries a certain message.
What advice would you give to aspiring artists?
Just be brave and do whatever it takes to make your dream happen. Don’t be shy and ask everything, everywhere, everyone. Don’t think that the most important thing is to have great equipment, the best tools etc. Yes, that’s important, but the main things you need to use are your eyes, hands, body, your brain and soul- that is what creates art. And take constructive criticism seriously, listen to people around you.
What are you most excited for in the future?
Just continuing to follow my dreams, new photos, new challenges, fresh ideas, a few collaborations and the whole new creative world.