photographer ella sverdlov

Have you heard about The Impossible Project? A group of former Polaroid employees banded together to save the last production plant for instant film in Enschede in The Netherlands. They have developed a way to produce new film for old Polaroid cameras. Thanks to this group more than 300 million cameras won't become obsolete. This all happened in 2008, and as part of its ongoing manifesto to keep the old ways alive, it's run a competition in conjunction with Blur Magazine.
A Polaroid taken by Israeli photographer Ella Sverdlov was chosen as the winner. She has now opened an online store where you can buy her Polaroid images.

Which five words best describe you? Always noticing the little details...
How did you get your career start and what path have you taken since? After I graduated I started working as an assistant photographer at the Dan Lev studio in Tel Aviv. The studio specialises in commercial photography, and I was very lucky to work with a good teacher and a great person. Today I understand that thanks to the fact that Dan has given me a lot of responsibility when I worked for him, I gained enough confidence to start my own business as an independent photographer. I think the next milestone in my career was when both my sister and sister-in-law were pregnant. I took photos of them and their growing bellies, got great feedback, and decided to open a small studio in my home, working in the maternity and family niche. Since then I expanded to other niches such as lifestyle, food and still life, and today I work with a variety of clients. After my Polaroid was chosen as the winning Polaroid at the Best Polaroid Contest by Blur Magazine & The Impossible Project, I decided to open my own Polaroid print shop at Etsy, hoping I can spread my love for Polaroid around the world.
What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt along the way? Patience pays off!
What’s your proudest career achievement? I really hope I didn't get there yet. I think achieving things too quickly can make you underestimate yourself and belittle your achievements.
What’s been your best decision? I was not afraid to make my favourite hobby my profession. I remember my first camera (Canon AE1), which I received when I was 14, and the confusion I felt after my college graduation, when I wasn’t sure whether photography was a dream I should pursue. I think that daring to go with my gut instinct was one of the best decisions I’ve made.
Who inspires you? A ray of sunlight on a winter's day can definitely spark new ideas.
What are you passionate about? The transitional seasons – autumn and spring.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Joel Sternfeld (American photographer), Eddie Vedder (American musician) and I also wish I could drink a cup of coffee with Georges Perec (a French novelist) in Paris.
What dream do you still want to fulfill? I wish I could get a generous grant and take long trip around the world with Eran (my husband) and a stock of Polaroids. Today, with a company like The Impossible Project making new films for Polaroid, the future of instant film looks promising, and I really hope I can continue to make a living selling my Polaroid prints.
What are you reading? Georges PerecLife: a user's manual and Species of spaces and other pieces. To me Perec writes through his prism. I also like Shuka Glotman, an Israeli artist. His book, Photography Alive, describes the art of photography like no theorist can understand. One of my favorite quotes from this book reads: “Photographing is paying attention. Everything deserves someone's attention, if only for a fleeting moment”. I also like reading prose and the weekend newspapers.

images courtesy of ella sverdlov