An artist, in whatever creative form, often has to make decisions about their life, its direction and the perceived limitations of that direction.
Very often it is not so much that a creative artistic life is either wholly impossible or impractical, it is that it is often not as financially stable, or lucrative as regular employment, and therefore not as comfortable. Often artists do not have regular holidays, do not have weekends, do not eat out, do not have new cars, furniture, the list goes on.
Lifestyle level is a decision that all artists have to make. Do I go for normal and accepted comforts, or do I go with my gut and set off on a path of discovery and self-fulfilment, without that new comfy couch, that holiday by the sea, that weekend takeout?
Lots of artists have made the decision to forgo the comforts from start, but interestingly, lots of artists have arrived at creativity after following more conventional employment paths. One of those artists is the Ukrainian photographer Alexander Kiyaschenko.
Alexander built a conventional career from tool-setter to Head of Operations in a company with foreign investments. However, success is very often a personal choice and perspective. While others around you may see and aspire to your success, to yourself it can seem hollow and meaningless, and that's what it felt like for Alexander.
He made a decision to change his life, change his path, change his direction. Alexander had always been interested in photography since childhood, it had actually always been an important element in his life, so much so that he decided to make it a central element of that life, in other words, he decided that creativity was the path he wished to follow.
In 2015 he attended the Victor Marushchenko School of Photography (www.marushchenko.com) where he began work on a documentary photo project dedicated to the Ukrainian LGBT community.
In such a short space of time Alexander has produced a range of mature photo projects. Work shown in this feature comes from his 'Loneliness' project, a title which is self evident if you take a look at the photos featured.
Photography is not just a matter of freezing a moment in time, and then keeping that photograph as a record of that moment in time. It is about so much more. It is about feeling, emotion, underlying anxieties, understandings, concepts and conclusions.
Alexander brings together a whole range of elements under the title Loneliness. Isolation for example, whether as a single figure devoid of environment, or indeed single figure surrounded by environment, brings home emotional understandings of disconnection.
However, partial elements of bodies, particulary those juxtaposed with other human, or non-human elements, also give an understanding of loneliness, loneliness as disconnection, whether from environment, or indeed community.
We are often loneliest when in the midst of others. It is one of the great tragedies of humanity, that we continually isolate members of the community because they do not necessarily fit the standard that some hold as true.
That we are all valid, that we all have something to contribute, that we all have a destiny and a path towards that destiny, is something that artists are often first to uphold, and first to celebrate, which is true of the artist Alexander Kiyaschenko, and for that we have to be truly grateful that he decided to forgo the path of comfortable employment, and take the more difficult, but more interesting and rewarding path of the creative artist.
All work is copyrighted to the artist. Please ask permission before sharing imagery. Thank you.