February 2016 Photography Student of the Month: Helena Polackova

February 2016 Photography Student of the Month: Helena Polackova

Hello Photoion fans, it’s time for another Student of the Month interview.

Each month we select a student that has shown great promise, and we sit down with them to learn more about their photographic journey. It’s a great way for us to recognise the successes of our students, and the winner also gets a £50 voucher to be used with any of our courses.

This month we sat down with Helena Polackova to find out how they got started with photography.

‘I’ve always loved looking at beautiful, inspiring, thought-provoking photographs. When I was a child growing up I used to go to the local library to read National Geographic magazines; and the power of the photos published in the magazine transported me to places I could only dream of. I think that’s where my love for travel, landscape, and wildlife photography came from. Although I also very much appreciate what an impact a great portrait can make, and the story behind the face full of expression. 


I’ve always enjoyed taking photos too; first using my dad’s camera until I saved up enough money to buy my own camera. All my cameras were simple automatic compact cameras and although I really enjoyed taking photos, I regarded myself just as a happy snapper. It was only last year in April 2015 when I finally bought a DLSR style camera for the first time in my life and discovered what pleasure and creativity it can bring.


Since then I’ve been like a sponge, soaking up all the information on the camera settings and how to use them to take an eye catching image. I’ve been reading lots of photography blogs and magazines, and tried to implement what I read and experiment when taking my own photos. I can positively say that photography has enriched my life. 


I now look at the world differently, I see the light differently, look at subjects from different angles, I’m far more attentive now, and notice things I’ve never seen before. It made me appreciate the beauty of this world more. I’ve even got up really early on a few occasions to catch the first light of dawn which was previously unheard of! I think the photography unleashed my inner creativity being otherwise pretty much hopeless in other forms of art :-). 


I only met Ion in December on a night photography workshop. His passion for this art is infectious and I can’t wait to learn more. I’m really taken aback and delighted to be chosen as a student of the month just two months later. I’ve still got much to learn. I’m really looking forward to the advanced course in April and I’m hoping to take my photography to the next level. I hope to become an accomplished amateur and one day perhaps turning this fantastic hobby into a living. One never knows.’