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“I exist to take photos. Even if I did not have any followers or people interested in what I do, I would still would do it. My art is who I am.”

-Elinleticia Högabo

You live and breathe your photography craft and your measureless passion is clearly portrayed in your work. How did your progression as a creative transform over time?

It’s challenging to answer a question like that because everything I have lived through is visible in my art. So there is no special date the photographing became everything for me. It just happened slowly until I started to have nightmares about losing my camera, which made me see that I was seriously into it. The year 2013 Photo Vogue chose my art to be exhibited in Milan in “A Glimpse At Vogue” and that was perhaps the obviously date that changed my view of myself as an artist. From that point, I had Photo Vogue behind me in my art and my development to be a better artist.

Your work is enchanting and ethereal with nature as your predominant backdrop. Does your appreciation of nature act as inspiration in your work?

I am not sure if I am so inspired by nature actually, but I am a sucker for natural light and never use flash. Photographing outdoors is great for my photos. But of course, my most personal work happens in the summer when we can be outside and work underwater. Water is my signum and the most important for me as inspiration.

You are extremely creative and quite fearless in your experimentation with various light sources. Can you please explain your fascination with lighting?

Yes, I do use a variety of lights. Any lights really because I do not like to use flash. I have experimented with many other sources to light. I am very fond of light strands and I enjoy using mirrors to highlight details. There is no possible limitation to what one can use for lighting. Mirrors, sequins, flashlights, water, colored bottles, magnifying glasses, therapy lights, and construction work lamps are just some of them.

Your emotional connection to your work is without a doubt obvious and is what sets you apart from professionals in your niche. Has this intense passion ever interfered with your productivity?

I am very emotionally connected to my models, which has created a lot of magical art but also conflicts. I have had some issues with keeping my work professional and not too personal. It’s hard to be objective when it comes to art you create with your soul. When the concepts you do are hard work (to find ways to work with lights, props, ideas, models, circumstances and so on) they are also like a print of yourself. This is why I am vulnerable to copycats. And then it’s the issue that an artist cannot work for free, but still has to have models to create their art. I was very poor when I started to photograph and I could not pay a thing. So I did what any other photographers do, I did “time for print” with inexperienced models. Some of those became really good under our cooperation, others just faded away. But I did become better and after a while, I started to reach that point where I was good enough to demand payment. When you have that situation, and the models are used to getting photos for free, they are, of course, not happy when you end up wanting them to pay for the sessions. When your art is you, it’s hard to keep your distance from people and if you need to have some distance from people to demand payment for your work, you happen to find yourself in an awkward position.

Your choice of models is unique from the mainstream fashion industry and I believe this makes your work stand out. What is your view on choosing your muses?

The social idea of beauty does not always appeal to me. I would rather choose models that are artists themselves than agency models. I really need models that have experienced darkness but create light out of it instead of drowning. I need people who know how to struggle.

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