Dutch born Kylli Sparre (Sparrek) befuddles the mind with surrealist photographs that have a fine art flair. After leaving a ballet career, she threw herself headfirst into photography to great results. Kylli depicts a whimsical world of beautiful loneliness, natural coexistence and solemn peace in pictures that speak to one’s sense of being. At Style.No.Chaser, we strongly believe that it is important to appreciate artists that are alive and well today and not wait until they are gone to discover them. We are elated to have stumbled upon Kylli and even more thrilled to have been granted an interview.
See the interview below …
“I have learned that people react very differently; someone might think that an image is is deeply sad and the next person might …”
Please tell us a little about yourself – your childhood, siblings, where you grew up, what you liked as a child, strange thoughts as a child/now, unique attributes, where you live now, etc.?
When I grew up, I spent all the summers at my grandmothers in the country. It was a place in the middle of woods, in a very small village. There were no other kids, so I spent a lot of time playing alone. I didn´t have many toys there or anything and my favorite entertainment was when my grandmother sat with me, we drank tea and she told different stories from her childhood, her memories from the war and from her youth. Many of my childhood memories are related to her and the time I spent there. Now I work and live in Tallinn.
In your bio, it states that you realized that ballet (which you professionally trained for) was not the path for you – how did this epiphany come about?
I started training for ballet when I was still a child, because that´s what you have to do if you consider being a dancer (or an athlete). But for me, choosing a career at that age was a little bit too early. It wasn´t like a sudden epiphany for me, I kind of knew quite early I think. I was just missing this massive passion for it, which is absolutely necessary for dance (or anything that you choose to do). And I really wanted to feel that way, if not for dance, then for something else.
What does your art (photography) mean to you?
I could not imagine doing anything else. Making images is challenging, interesting and comforting at the same time – I feel I am in my element, my mind works faster than it usually does and I just somehow feel really alive when I work on my images.
How do you describe your form of photography/art?
Conceptual/Fine Art photography.
What tools do you use for the creation of your work and how did you create your personal art/photography style?
I use my camera Canon 5DMarkII and Photoshop. I believe that personal style just develops on it´s own if you follow what really is interesting to you.
Is there any particular emotion that you try to evoke from your audience with your work?
I wouldn´t say that there is one very specific emotion I am after. I have learned that people react very differently; someone might think that an image is is deeply sad and the next person might say that it is very whimsical or even funny. So there is no way to predict what people will feel or if they feel anything at all. I just think that the only way is to make sure that I feel strongly about what I make, then other people might feel connected to that as well. I am always deeply moved and even surprised when people react to my work.
There is a lot of ‘nature’ in your work, is there a reason for this?
Yes, well nature is certainly special to me (probably is too for everyone who lives on this planet). Natural light is the most beautiful to my eyes (best when coming through the clouds) and natural shapes and forms are just stunning and never get boring.
When you go through a creative slump, how do you break out of it?
I think it is best to take a small break. But a small one. I have discovered that routine actually works best. I think it is not a great idea to completely forget about what you were trying to do when you get into a creative slump, but just keep going. But don’t force it. So there is a fine line I guess. Also, when I feel that I am going nowhere, doing something else creative might solve the problem.
What is the worst critique you have ever received about your work? What is the best compliment that you have received about your work?
The worst – “Is this all supposed to mean anything?”
The best – that would be every one who feels connected to what I do.
What music do you generally listen to and what is your favorite movie?
I love jazz. Favorite movie is a difficult one, because there are many movies that I love. From last year – “Blue Jasmine”. But again, there are many many great movies.
Since Style.No.Chaser is a men’s lifestyle magazine, what attributes/items/clothing/etc. do you think defines a man?
Well, sense of humor is always good (for men and women).
Do you think commercial success will affect the purity of your work?
I do some commissioned work and the purity really depends on the specific project. I have been lucky, sometimes I have complete freedom to create whatever I feel I should create. I am very grateful for opportunities like that. But of course I have had projects, where things are very specific and I need to create something that fits precisely with others expectations. I always learn a lot from those assignments, but yes, I could not say that this kind of work is purely from my heart.
What is your personal life philosophy? Do you have an ultimate goal for your art/photography?
I suppose my life philosophy and my ultimate goal for my photography is somewhat the same – to learn, be truthful and to be open.
How can people learn more about your current and upcoming works?
I share news about my upcoming/current shows and new works on my Facebook page.
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