Tag: andrey sharapov

Evgeny Matveev I: Sonia and Sasha

Evgeny Matveev I: Sonia and Sasha

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The run of Russian photographers – with just one Italian intruder in the previous six posts (considering Andrey Sharapov as Russian rather than Ukrainian) – is extraordinary: and now here’s another. Evgeny Matveev is a forty-six year-old from Saint Petersburg, and as well as the approximate age, has a lot in common with Andrey: they both specialise in gymnastics/dance, and are consummate, almost obsessive, photographers of girls.

Whether it comes from an understanding of the physical form via the two activities, I don’t know – but they share an appreciation for the whole body – legs, arms, backs – with consequently relatively less attention to headshots and clothing. Evgeny is formidably prolific – with more than 9,500 images on Vk.com alone, so it’s going to take a few posts to cover his output. I’m starting with the model in the opening portrait – Sonia – whose crowning glory is obviously her hair. First this set, which is one of the few named ones featuring non-gymnastics/dance sessions that he has on Vk.com:

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The next set (including the header) I had to put together myself – for obvious reasons my file is entitled “Sonia – Hair” – shot a year later at sunset on the beach:

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…….the emphasis on Sonia’s hair being mirrored in portraits he’s taken of another model – seemingly called Sasha – with hair more wavy than Sonia’s red mane:

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…….as well as Vk.com, Evgeny has galleries on Photosight.ru, 500px.com, and Facebook (see image link) – including dipping a seven-image sized toe in Flickr. As offerings to a more general public, he has a (rather underwhelming) home site, and is is even featured briefly on Fkids.ru – and has started an Instagram account dedicated just to rhythmic gymnastics (see image link below). The next post on him will feature interiors – and if you glance through his portfolio, you’ll see that big choices will have to be made…..

Alina Kiryukhina by Andrey Sharapov (Dolphine/d’Elf): Featuring “Kelp” by Noxxut on DeviantArt

Alina Kiryukhina by Andrey Sharapov (Dolphine/d’Elf): Featuring “Kelp” by Noxxut on DeviantArt

The next three portraits serve as something of a defence for this post – I realise that the previous one was necessarily populated by images of the model, Gaia, showing lots of skin – perfectly appropriately: she’s a professional model, and it was an expertly (and beautifully) shot swimsuit/beachwear session. This post features a couple of fine-art photographic semi-nudes, as well as some drawn nudes/semi nudes – but my defence is that the main artist we’re dealing with is an exquisite photographer of girls’ portraits per se, and the nude studies are incidental to the overall vision (although in their own right they’re lovely portraits as well):

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…….I didn’t exactly choose these at random – but they’re more-or-less representative of the portfolio of the artist. Ok, why this particular photographer? At this point in time just because of a particular image:

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…..by a long-term DeviantArtist, Noxxut, who has been serving up slightly unsettling illustrations of barely-dressed girls for quite some time – this one (Kelp“), I happened upon by chance, and it reminded me immediately of a portrait by a photographer whom I’d always wanted to do a post on, but lacked enough definitive information – except two names: Dolphine/ d’Elf. As it turned out, reverse searching the image (that Noxxut’s artwork seems definitely to have been based on) brought me immediately to the photographer – forty-five year-old Yalta resident Andrey Sharapov:

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……and I apologise for the quality of the images – his original formats are often miniscule. Given the names Dolphine and d’Elf, and to some extent the concentration on gymnastics images, I’d in fact surmised he was a she – and also given the rather archaic formats and framing, I’d guessed they were all from some years ago – while although he started uploading onto the Gallery.ru (link above) site back in 2008, his last contact was as recent as December last year.

I’ll finish with Noxxut before continuing to Andrey’s portfolio: I really appreciate the quality that the model (Alina Kiryukhina according to his Vk.com feed) has in the main and associated shots:

……and the conceit of recognising that quality by turning her into an underwater human/alien/seacreature was clever – just why not credit the original artist (and model), or at least indicate there is an unattributable primary source? He’s done it before – this is his painting “Loli-pop” followed by Sergey Bratkov‘s iconic portrait of Sonya from his “Kids” series:

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……..and as usual lots of praise in the “Comments” section – and no acknowledgement of the actual source (or the really bad drawing of the girl’s legs). Here’s some of Noxxut’s portfolio:

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…..the last one (“Pearls Before Swine“) showing that he has the possibility of moving into Mark Ryden territory with a more hyper-real technique and less texture  – assuming he understands that ultimately there’s only so far you can go with drawing girls in ironic bikinis…….

Anyway, here’s a selection of Andrey’s work – there are a lot of gymnastics shots to choose from, so just a representative group of those. Otherwise he seems to have managed to take excellent portraits of non-professional models – some he probably met through gymnastics as he snapped his way round the Crimea – first his bigger formats:

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……..which come mainly from his Vk.com feed……..followed by an enormous gallery of (mostly) his small formats: logically I could have bumped some up – but choosing from this quality is pretty well impossible:

…….and Alina? There are other portraits of her in Andrey’s portfolio – some not so different:

……and some showing her seemingly slightly older:

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

…….but, wonderfully, some also showing her without the sociopath’s glare (only kidding 😘) when she was a little thing:

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

I really like it when a photographer gets the chance to follow a girl through life’s formative stages: two final portraits – a group shot with her family, and the rather suave-looking sixteen-years-younger Andrey himself beside – what else? A dolphin:

photo by dolphine. http://dolphine.childphoto.ru

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