Irene Cruz is an enigmatic photo-story teller from Spain. Her photography style is full of symbolism and a distinct personal philosophy of the artist. Through her images she creates a world of her own and evokes sense of mystery and curiosity. Her photo projects resonate with her thoughtful admissions and a unique interpretation of life, people, and world. She’s engaged in the search of meaning, wonder, and hidden elements in her dark, cold, and moist ambiance. She’s also very eloquent with her interpretation of images which feel like prose poems composed by an accomplished writer. Free from all doubts and with a clear vision, Irene expresses herself wonderfully through her magnificent photography. She’s indeed a pleasure to know:
Hi! I was born in Madrid. There I studied Public Relations and Audiovisual Communication at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. After this I did the International Masters at EFTI specializing in Conceptual Photography and Artistic Creation. I was also highly influenced by the workshop on the narrative effects of light. Now I’m based in Berlin where I’m working as a freelancer, at the same time I’m working on my personal projects.
I can’t think about my life without photography. I think I’ve been taking pictures since ever. I dedicated myself to fine art photography since I started my masters. The most important and decisive point in my career was my trip to Berlin in 2011. I’m giving my life to my artistic work… I am taking pictures all the time. I can take 5 pictures or I can take 500… it depends on the month, on inspiration, on light…
My key areas of photography are landscape, portrait, fine arts… conceptual, too. The blue light makes me click. One of my best achievements was an Accesit prize in the Santander’s Bank Foundation Photography Contest and also becoming part of an exhibition at the Kunst Halle in Berlin last year.
Speaking of my camera, I normally use a Nikon D800, because is wonderful for taking low light photographs and videos. But I’ve also taken some of my pictures with a Sony Nex-7 or Nikon D300 also. My favorite lens is 24-70 f/2.8. This is the one I mostly use. Normally I don’t manipulate my pictures. I use Adobe Bridge to select the the best shots, and then Adobe Camera Raw for editing them a little bit, put the same colour in every photo of the same series… But nothing beyond that.
I want to capture reflection, exploration, mystery, desire, melancholia… Light is indeed a very important part of my work, which makes me explore and experiment in the countries of Northern Europe, that’s the big reason why I’m living in Berlin right now. Here it is not difficult to find the landscapes and atmosphere I want to capture.
For my photos I mostly get inspiration from books of philosophy. I love them. They make me think and develop new ideas. I choose a subject that I want to reflect on, and I start to read and to see films about that thing I want to tell. Before taking pictures I usually draw the images I would like to capture. Then I look for the best place, and I start shooting. I’m not closed to improvisation, sometimes during the shooting I get new ideas or points of view that I consider.
Nowadays everyone is having a camera. I think it is one of the best things to express ourselves. I know that there are other people beside me who are working on the same medium and with same elements, forest, girl, loneliness… Everything is already done. I just try to be sincere and prove it when I express and discover the things that I have inside, with a very defined style, full of significances.
I came to Berlin because I fell in love with the German landscapes, they’re wonderful. I’m living near a park that is like a real forest. When I’m looking for a location, it is very easy to find and to arrive at. I’m thinking everyday about photography, so my vision about my surroundings is totally influenced by my photographic work. I’d like to keep growing as an artist, make exhibitions all over the world, develop my own photographic language, be known, get famous… I’m quite ambitious.
Sometimes you don’t know from where exactly the inspiration comes from. It can be a life lesson, a sequence, an instant, a quote, an emotion, a piece of poetry, a colour. When I seek inspiration I turn to philosophical literature (as I said before): Simmel, Ritter, Schopenhauer, Spinoza, Heidelberg or Sennett are some of my favourite authors. Many times I make references for them in the texts that accompany my photo series. Also, the seventh art is an important source of inspiration for my artwork – I reckon my photography is very cinematographic.
My muses imagine, feel the damped ground in their barefooted feet, get lost in the natural and temporal space and are drawn towards the mystery of my images which seems to locate themselves in a place where all the opposed points meet in order to not forget their origins – the nature – because everything is nature after all.
I think the first and most important of all is learning to transmit everything that one wants to express, seek a photographic discourse that distinguishes an artist from others, or what is even more difficult to discover. At first, my advice is to forget some rules and traditions and be yourself, reflect on what disturbs us or what we are obsessed with. Having that clarity is the first big step. In conclusion, in other words, “you must convert the picture in the mirror of yourself.”