Greta Skaraitienė - fotografija
Sounding Portraits of “Vilnius Jazz”
This year the festival greets visitors with an exhibition by photographer Greta Skaraitienė. Here’s how the artist introduces herself and the exhibition:
“For me, Vilnius is unimaginable without jazz. Jazz emotions and music are an inseparable part of it, and at the same time it is a symbol of freedom, flying through the streets of Vilnius, over church towers and in the hearts of Vilnius residents.
When I was a student, I used to come with my friends to the jazz evenings at the Teachers’ House, where the mood and the feeling of freedom were enchanting.
That feeling of freedom inspired me to photograph jazz. I really wanted the music to be heard, the expression, the state of free people, and the love for their work and their creativity be felt in my photos.
There is a lot of creativity in contemporary jazz, musicians are not limiting themselves, they are experimenting. I also started experimenting, playing with lights, with exposure. Just pressing a button became uninteresting. I was combining shots by interlacing images. Dynamics is a must in jazz photography. Double bass, saxophone, percussion, keyboards come together, sounding in space and in the photo.
For me, it’s like a game when you don’t know what the end result will be. In a concert, the photographer is put into a frame – he/her can’t change the place often, can’t keep shooting all the time, can’t interfere with the others’ enjoyment of the spectacle. Therefore, every press of the camera button has to be deliberate.
Looking from the outside, it may seem easy to photograph jazz, but it requires even more skill and strength than making photojournalism. You have to think all the time, create a vision, wait for the musician’s position, combine the next image with the one you took, and use the right exposure. I’m very happy when the photo sounds.
I started photographing at Vilnius Jazz festival in 2015. I came and stayed forever. Here I fell in love with jazz even more, met legendary musicians from abroad and Lithuania. At Vilnius Jazz, I learned to photograph music.
I am a portrait photographer, for me the person in the shoot is the most important. That’s why my jazz photos are dominated by portraits of musicians. This is how the photo exhibition Portraits of “Vilnius Jazz” came about.
Let jazz spread all over Lithuania. And I would love for people to look at my photos and hear the music.”
Since 2005, Skaraitienė’s works have been selected annually for the finalists’ exhibitions of the Lithuanian press photography. In 2022, her work became the winner of the Lithuanian Press Photography 2022 in the Entertainment Category and won the Golden Shoot award.
The artist has held solo exhibitions Pilvai (Bellies), 100 tikrų žmonių portretų (100 Portraits of True People) and Saldi akimirka (Sweet Moment).
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