Editorial is open for submissions: [email protected]
by Arseny Vesnin (Twitter: @designercollector), founder of Designcollector Network (2003) and curator of the Digital Decade initiatives, exhibitions and online collaborations. Interdisciplinary mediator guiding artists and
communicating the future of art. Based in St.Petersburg, Russia.
Flora Borsi is a young fine art photographer from Hungary. She uses exquisite photo manipulation to create surreal images that are thematically focused on identity, relationships, emotions and dreams. Her immaculate technique and subtle conceptual ideas create beautiful evocations of universal emotions, from lust and desire to despair and loss. Flora at once captures the complex strength and fragility of the human psyche. She expertly visualises dark fantasies and atmospheric dreams, utilising the uncanny and clever metaphor, while unlocking what it means to think, feel, dream and express in the urban world. Her work often features the female body and she plays with hiding and revealing the eyes or face to leave only the feminine form, exploring questions of female representation and the relationship between body and self. We speak to her during her first drop on SuperRare.
Visual Creator, Photographer
Self-taught multimedia addict, doing self-portraits for more than a decade.
What was your path to doing what you’re doing now?
Everything led to what I’m doing right now, I tried to do UI design and coding when I was younger, but that didn’t make me happy. Since a very young age I’ve been interested in Photoshop and photo-manipulations,
I won my first camera at 15 and since then I’m doing self-portraits. I wanted to create something immortal, which is Art. I’ve had many obstacles, since digital art and photoshop-portraits are still new and weren’t accepted in art communities in Hungary. Years later with the help of the Internet I made projects where I gained a lot of international attention and turned my passion into the main source of my income.
When you were growing up, was creativity part of your life, and how did you decide to focus on photo-manipulation?
Since I was a little kid I’ve been creating drawings or something creative with every tool I had. I tried to go to a “normal” high-school with a drawing faculty, but skipped many classes and stayed home doing self-portraits with my camera and Photoshop. For me it was obvious that I want to do this on a professional level, so I went to a University where I got my Bachelor of Arts in Photography.
Did you feel different at the time you realised yourself as an artist?
In Hungary people don’t like to call themselves “Artist” it’s like being very arrogant, so I haven’t had the opportunity to consider myself as being one. I’m just doing what I like and if others think it’s art, then I’m happy about that.
Did you have an “Aha!” moment when you knew that photography was what you wanted to do?
Honestly I couldn’t think about doing anything else, it was like predestined for me.
You created an outstanding series of work “Animeyed” that had a lot of response, reaction and even copycats. Was it a breaking point in your career? How does it influence your way of doing work now?
That was absolutely a big milestone for me! Before that I had some popular projects, but Animeyed was the big break-through for me, I got a lot of invitations to exhibit world-wide, which helped me to be financially
Do you collaborate with other artists?
Usually I don’t, whenever I tried it wasn’t successful, haha. In my opinion it’s very hard for two strong-willed artists to agree and collaborate.
As a creative person, do you ever have those moments where you feel like everything you create is just shit?
All the time. Sometimes I think that all I do is just meaningless and couldn’t be as good as other artists’ work. Then a few days later some good news comes in and then I’m fine, like even if I don’t like what I did – others do.
Have you taken any big risks to move forward?
I did! I was invited to be a teacher in the US many times, but I stayed and rather created new pieces. Somehow I’m freaking out of the thought that I’m chained to something, for years, every day.
Are your family and friends supportive of what you do? Who has encouraged you the most?
They are. My Dad did teach the basics of photography and encouraged and supported me when I needed him. I have a lot of haters in my country and before I got popular they made mean comments almost every time I released something. I still remember having almost the worst grade in Photoshop Class at the University and a few months later being invited to do the Splash Screen for Photoshop. That teacher later came to me and while he was congratulating – he said that he always knew I’m good in Photoshop, lol! At my University I did quit for like 3 times because of that mindset, but my family and friends helped me to overcome the haters or emotional issues I was having.
Did you have a mentor? Who was it and how did they inspire you?
Like I mentioned before, it was my Dad who taught many things in Photography and showed other artists’ work when I was at the very beginning of my career. When I was around 12-13, we usually sat in the front of Youtube and he explained later how that studio/camera setup was made. We used a lot of papers and I shed a lot of tears haha (I didn’t understand the math stuff for months).
Is it important to you to be a part of a creative community of people?
Indeed! I love to see others making amazing stuff, it’s so inspiring! It’s also amazing to see that people I know creating artworks which will be on display 100 years from now as something famous and ground-breaking from this era.
You’re already a successful and well established artist, what made you pursue NFT art as a medium?
NFT is the most exciting thing I’ve ever seen! I’m so happy to see artists who made art just for fun and for their followers are selling for thousands of dollars! Somehow with my moving imagery I couldn’t fit into Photography nor Digital Art, so NFT was the perfect solution for me to monetize my Animations.
What inspired the work in your first NFT drop?
Seeing other artists on twitter winning.
What are your short plans for the next NFT drop?
I want to work on some old PSDs and animate them. Before NFT animating my works was just for fun, but now I see why I should do it. I’m very excited how the NFT world would take it.
What advice would you give to someone starting out?
Be okay with yourself enough to fail and then start again.
If you could go back and do one thing differently, what would it be?
I would go back and laugh on people who told me to stop what I’m doing. 😀 I still remember that one time I went to a portfolio review, printing all my work for a lot of money and showing it to a “famous” curator. She said I should stop doing Photoshop and do only Photography, because what I do cannot be taken seriously. I remember crying and being very insecure and hurt. I felt something inside me which was all against her opinion and I continued with what I felt like was my path and my true authentic self through creating those self-portraits. Many times I thought about creating less colorful, more minimal artworks but that would be forcing a style which I’m not – just to be accepted and fit into the current trends, so I said F it, I will do what my “sixth sense” is telling me to do.
Do you have any unrealised or unfinished projects?
I have many. I’m frustrated many times for not having more hands or sleeping less so I could create day and night for months to realize what I have in mind.