Bak 17 Is Online!
'Face', 17th issue of Bak Magazine, is now online! Sit back, relax and enjoy!


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Interviews in Bak | 16
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Noah Kalina
Photographer { }
Noah Kalina

- In your artworks, you create contrasts between ordinary and weird, ugly and glamourous, simple and unexpected. Your photographs look so real that they make us feel that they were not even planned to be taken. From this perspective, how do you define photography and its effects on you?

Since photography has the capacity to do all of those things, that's how I would define it: a medium with flexibility and range. Beyond that, I don't know if a definition is all that useful.

- 10 years ago, you started taking a photograph everyday, and in a few years, 'The Everyday Project' became a phenomenon. Tens of millions of people watched it, and you say you will keep on taking a photo every day until the day you die. Was there any specific reason for you to start 'Everyday'? When the idea first came to your mind, did you imagine that one day it would be such a big thing?

I had bought a digital camera and I thought a great way to utilize that technology would be to take a picture every day. Then I thought I could take a photo of myself every day. I really just thought it would be a good idea.  That, along with my interest in time and the subtleties of the aging process were reasons for starting the project.

The project was basically a secret at first. For the first few years only a handful of people even knew I was doing it. Then I made a website a few years later and it started getting a little bit of attention. Once I put the video up I thought only a few people would watch it. When it turned into millions I was very surprised. I still am. It has certainly far surpassed any expectation I had.  

- In 'Everday', after seeing you alone for years, some celebrities such as Paris Hilton, Black Eyed Peas and David Hasselhoff just showed up behind you. Seriously, how did that happen? :)

It was right after "everyday" became a hit on YouTube. I got a call from the producers at VH1 and they invited me to work on a project with them for their Big in 06 Award show. I accepted and we set up the project. They were originally intended to be used for the show, but when the show ended I received copies and incorporated them into my own project.

- Can you tell us about Kalina Magazine in which you publish great images from your photography projects?

KALINA Magazine was a publishing experiment. I became aware of MagCloud, an on-demand magazine publisher. I thought it would be a great way to work on projects. So I just did it. Again, I just thought it would be something worth exploring. I have made 3 issues. Not sure if I will continue with it as I have other ideas planned for different mediums, but I always have the option of making new issues.

- Most artists need to do something personal, besides their commercial work. It's obvious that you are one of them :) If money were not an object, what kind of project would you create and what would be your aim?
It is really hard for me to think in hypotheticals. I've always thought that if I won the lottery, it would be the worst thing to ever happen to my work. I think all of my motivation would disappear. So, really, I am perfectly content with what I have going on in the real world right now. I like doing the commercial work as a challenge and also as a practice. I hope all of it just makes me a better photographer.

- In what ways do you think the rapid developments in technology will affect the future of the digital arts?

I really don't give it much thought. Technology is certainly a useful tool but dwelling on equipment and things of that nature gets in the way. It's about the content and the ideas. Ideas are king.

- Does music inspire you?

Yes, music is a very important part of my work flow. Helps motivate and inspire me.  

- Imagine that you have one chance to go back in time and to share an artist's dinner table. Who would you choose and what would you like to ask him/her first?

I'd choose Caravaggio and I would ask him what he thinks about death. Then he would probably attack me.  

- Theme of the 16th issue of Bak Magazine is 'City'. What does this word mean to you? Do you think New York is a great motivation for you or is it just a place to live in?

To me, a true city is a place where diversity is everywhere. From the people to the architecture. You should be able to walk down the street and see the world. I think New York is one of the best places to experience this. It is certainly very inspiring, I should probably go out more.

To me, a true city is a place where diversity is everywhere. From the people to the architecture. You should be able to walk down the street and see the world. I think New York is one of the best places to experience this.

- Noah Kalina / Bak 16
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