Read Time 6 minutes
The images that made me
How much does imagery help shape the person we become? Which photographs are the ones we remember as changing us in some way––creatively, personally, professionally––or simply as marking the passage of time?
We ask industry leaders, artists and experts in visual culture to talk us through the five photographs that have brought them to where they are now. Think Desert Island Discs, but make it art.
We are delighted to be welcoming Sivan Roshianu to the Darklight family. Her early interest in and passion for photography quickly turned a hobby into a full-fledged profession where she developed a unique and distinctively bold photographic language.
Original concepts and a bold approach characterise Sivan’s work and transform her signature style of bright colors, utter precision, and a minimalist and clean look into a recognisable statement.
Her ability to humanise objects by giving them a form of expression has turned her surrealist style into her trademark. You’ll soon be able to purchase limited edition prints from Sivan over on Darklight Art. Here she tells us the images that made her.
Miles Davis’ Hand, Irving Penn 
This one has had a profound influence on my approach to artistic photography in several ways:
It really highlights the significance of paying attention to details. It motivates me to create pictures that provoke curiosity among viewers.
The photo portrays emotions and tells a story without showing the whole subject. This unique approach adds an extra layer of intrigue to my work.
Penn’s mastery of lighting is exceptional. He taught me how light can create mood, depth, and texture in a photograph. Proper lighting can transform ordinary subjects into extraordinary ones.
I now pay meticulous attention to lighting and the slightest details in my photography. Penn’s photo of Miles Davis, which focused on his hand, inspired me to creatively capture my subjects’ essence. Penn’s work has influenced me to experiment with techniques and strive for visually compelling and emotionally resonant photography.
Amanda Lepore, Addicted to Diamonds, New York, David LaChappelle 
This captivating and thought-provoking masterpiece has left a lasting impression on my creative vision as a photographer. It blends glamour, fantasy, and social commentary, serving as a critique of consumer culture. LaChapelle’s use of bold colours and unconventional subjects caught my eye when I first encountered his work in a photography course. The photograph is remarkable, and it has had a profound impact on my artistic pursuits. I got the courage to express my thoughts and feelings through my artwork.
Nigella Damascena, Germany, Karl Blossfeldt [c.1932]
This photo showcases the beauty and complexity of nature.
This timeless botanical study, captured with remarkable precision and detail, has profoundly influenced my photography approach. You can still see it everywhere as a role model to all classic botanical illustrations created even nowadays.
Even though it’s widespread in the region I live in, I hadn’t noticed this plant till I first saw the image.
Blossfeldt’s work is characterised by meticulously examining plant forms, presenting them with scientific rigour and artistic finesse. In this way, Nigella Damascena has served as an excellent inspiration for my work in photography. I even grew a Nigella Damascena at home by myself to make a gesture inspired by this masterpiece.
Untitled, Maurizio di Iorio 
Maurizio di Iorio is a contemporary photographer widely recognised for his exceptional mastery of colour and innovative techniques in photography.
His work has significantly influenced my approach to photography, particularly regarding colour utilisation and techniques, as seen in my early work.
Di Iorio’s impact has been far-reaching, leaving an indelible mark on my photographic style. His influence is reflected in my heightened attention to bold colours, deeper understanding of colour psychology, willingness to experiment with photographic techniques, a keen eye for light and shadow, and use of colour as a powerful tool for storytelling.
His work has expanded my creative boundaries, consistently pushing me to evolve and refine my style. Every single frame can deceive the viewer into thinking that it’s a simple photograph when it’s a very sophisticated photograph made in a unique way that emphasises highlights and shadows. I had difficulty choosing only one strong, influential artwork that had the strongest impact on me, but surely, his beautiful gems always caught my eye and made me crave more.
Natasha, Michal Chelbin 
This deeply moved me. In the picture, a beautiful little girl stands in front of dirty coal miners, creating a striking contrast. This portrait made me realize the power of photography in conveying complex emotions and experiences.
As an aspiring artist, I want to gain such wisdom and reach this level of artistic genius.