A Passion for the Ordinary

Aleksandra Kolanowska started working at ZEISS in the Polish city of Poznań one year ago. The 30-year-old financial accountant describes her greatest passion as photography. Her favorite subjects are glimpses of forgotten moments, unusual oddities, and situations which seem perfectly ordinary – at least at first. She has entered her photos in several competitions and the response has been very positive. 

"The first photo competition I ever entered was a wonderful success," says Aleksandra Kolanowska, her eyes shining. The amateur photographer, who actually majored in German studies, works as a Senior Accountant in Microscopy's finance department in Poznań. Just three years ago, the multitalented and highly capable Kolanowska decided to delve deeper into photography – and her camera became her constant companion. Whenever she took a trip or attended a family gathering, she tried to capture the people and the moments they experienced. Determined to learn more about all the different techniques, Kolanowska was constantly experimenting, visiting workshops, and picking up tips from professional photographers on photography trips.

She quickly felt an affinity for reportage photography and soon began to apply her newly acquired skills and knowledge. "It's everyday things I'm passionate about," says Kolanowska. "I try to capture passing moments, some of which are unusual or unique." Until 2014 she had only shown her photos to her family and friends. The response was always enthusiastic. They recognized her potential and encouraged her to present her work to a wider public.

Award-winning images

In January 2015, Kolanowska entered her first competition, 'Photo Grants Challenge. Art of Freedom', which was organized by the Polish Ministry of Infrastructure and Development. The first stage saw 12 photographers from six cities selected from among all the entries. In the second stage of the contest, the chosen photographers were asked to take photos of specific subjects in a workshop. Kolanowska came through both stages with flying colors and joined a further 11 photographers in the final. It wasn't enough to get her a place on the podium, but the amateur photographer was delighted with the results: "I was over the moon to get so far in my first attempt!" And the success story didn't end there.

In April she received her first award in the 'Travel documentary' category of the '7LIVES of fineLIFE ' photo contest, and one month later she received another prize in the 'Garden of Earthly Delights' category. After submitting two series of photographs, Kolanowska is now on the list of award winners at the 10th Portfolio Show of the 2015 Krakow Photography Month Festival and is one of the finalists in the PORT-OFF-FOLIO 2015 Show in Łódź.


Aleksandra Kolanowska's photos