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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Filip Hrebenda je celosvetovo uznávaný profesionálny fotograf krajiny, ktorý je známy svojim zaujímavým podaním toho najkrajšieho, no častokrát najtvrdšieho, čo nám dokáže príroda ponúknuť. Už od mala ho fascinovali hory a divoká príroda. Vyrastal v malom mestečku uprostred Slovenska, odkiaľ mal blízko do najmenších veľhôr sveta - Vysokých Tatier. A práve tu začala jeho vášeň pre turistiku a fotenie. Už v mladom veku vyhľadával pohľady, ktoré nie sú bežné. Preto na hory chodieval často v extrémnych podmienkach. Práve jeho vášeň pre hory a prírodu ho nakoniec doviedla ku foteniu.

 

Posolstvom jeho tvorby je preniesť atmosféru foteného miesta a pocity, ktoré pri fotení v náročných podmienkach mal na divákov a tak im aspoň na chvíľu umožniť vnímať krásu tých najdivokejších miest sveta, ktorých je na zemi čím ďalej menej. Za svoju tvorbu Filip dostal mnoho prestížnych ocenení. Jeho tvorba bola publikovaná v tých najväčších médiách sveta ako napríklad CNN, BBC, National Geographic, Forbes, The Guardian, Daily Mail a ďalších. Jeho fotografie tiež boli vystavované po celom svete. Od roku 2018 sa venuje aj organizovaniu fotografických expedicií a workshopov, na ktorých sa snaží odovzdať svoje vedomosti ostatným fotografom.

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ACHIEVEMENTS / AWARDS
PARTNERS

A FEW WORDS ABOUT ME

BEGINNING OF THE JOURNEY

I literally had to answer their call, and I heard that call. During my teenage years, I spent a significant amount of time in the mountains, as I come from an area surrounded by mountains and nature. I grew up in a small town in central Slovakia, in Revúca, where I currently reside. The nearby Muránska planina and the Low Tatras were the places where my relationship with photography began. I frequently ventured there to appreciate the sunrises and the night sky from mountain summits. Some of these moments were so beautiful that I regretted not capturing them. So, I acquired my first camera with a basic lens (Fujifilm X-E2 + xf18-55) and began experimenting. I am someone who immerses myself in things, and photography was no exception. This hobby became a part of me, and it didn't let go. The beauty of nature inspired me to take photographs, and photography, in turn, led me to discover new facets of natural beauty. It was an intense journey.

 

While I admired the work of several world-renowned landscape photographers, as well as landscape painters like Albert Bierstadt, I never aimed to replicate their work. I always aspired to carve my own path. However, studying the works of these artists greatly assisted me in understanding light and color contrasts. Regarding my work, I am a meticulous person, and that commitment propelled my progress in photography. Being self-taught, I spent a considerable amount of time with the camera in the wilderness.

WHEN "HOBBY" BECAME A MISSION

The effort was significant, and the drive to improve was robust. Consequently, the first successes were not long in coming. Within a year and a half of taking up photography, some of my photos achieved success in both local and international competitions. Some reached the finals, while others even secured a spot in the top three. Based on these achievements, I established collaborations with several brands in the field of photographic equipment. Foreign photographers began to acknowledge that I had managed to develop my own style in a short period. Encouraged by these successes and positive feedback, I embarked on one of my initial foreign photo trips to the Balkans, capturing shots of places previously unfamiliar to the landscape photography world.

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These photos were well received and so people with a demand for individual photo courses began to call me. Although at first I wasn't sure if I could pass on my experience well, I decided to give it a try and see you later. After a years of teaching individual courses, I was sure it was something I wanted to do. Passing information on to others caught me, and each of these courses had very positive feedback.  

In 2018, I decided to open my first group workshop in the High Tatras at a place whose surroundings I knew better than my own socks - at a cottage near the Green Lake. After weeks of preparation, I opened the first workshop and waited for it to come true. And something happened that I didn't even hope for. The workshop deadline was met that evening. So I opened another and it was filled. It was already clear to me then that it could work.

THE JOURNEY DOES NOT END

The fact that photography has become a job for me has opened the door for me to move to a whole new professional level. I pushed the boundaries of where I can go for the photo and what I can bear for it. I learned that the harder and more unusual conditions I take pictures, the more exceptional my work will be. That's why I spend a lot of time in challenging mountain and arctic conditions. I endure severe frosts, strong winds, showers, hail, volcanic gases and other elements of nature in order to bring the viewer a completely different view of the world in which we live. I feel "alive" more than anywhere else in these places. And it is this feeling that I am trying to convey to the viewer, who is looking at my work. If my fingers froze in the field, I want the viewer to freeze figuratively. Through composition, working with light and sensitive color tuning, I try to get these emotions into my work.

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I also strive to share this skill with clients through my workshops, an endeavor that requires revealing all my know-how to participants. That's precisely what I do. After all, everyone perceives the same subject from a different perspective, and that's the beauty of art. Since 2018, I have conducted more than 80 group workshops and expeditions in Slovakia, the Italian Alps, Iceland, Norway and some other beautiful locations. In that period, including individual courses, I have assisted to hundreds photographers in elevating their work to the next level through the application of my techniques and accumulated experience. This is an activity I intend to continue.

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FILIPOVU TVORBU STE MOHLI VIDIEŤ NAPRÍKLAD V:

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PARTNERS

ACHIEVEMENTS AND AWARDS

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Over the years, my work has been featured in numerous local and global publications, including National Geographic (ESP), CNN, BBC, Daily Mail, The Guardian, FotoVideo, DiY Photography, and more. Photographs from various series have been showcased in galleries in Slovakia and abroad. Pieces from the "Born of Fire" series, captured in the new Icelandic volcanic area Fagradalsfjall, have been or are currently on display in Bratislava, London, Budapest, Tokyo, Oslo, Sharjah (UAE), Taipei, and other locations.

 

I have been a member of the Association of Professional Photographers of Slovakia (APFSR) since 2020. During my tenure in the association, I have earned several prestigious awards and quality certificates for my work.

XPOSURE INTERNATIONAL AWARDS 2023 (Night)

At the most prestigious and largest photographic festival in the world, held annually in Sharjah (United Arab Emirates), a member of the royal family, Sultan bin Ahmed al Quasimi, presented me with an award for exceptional achievement in the field of night landscape photography.

FEP AWARDS 2023 GOLDEN CAMERA (Landscape)

In a competition dedicated to professional European photographers, I managed to secure the first place with a series of photographs from the past years. This achievement earned my work the title of FEP Golden Camera, signifying "European Photographer of the Year in the Landscape Genre" in the world of professional photography.

SONY WORLD PHOTOGRAPHY AWARDS 2023

(Regional award)

In January 2023, the photograph "The Night Portal" received the "Regional Award" for Central Europe in the prestigious competition "Sony World Photography Awards 2023."

SONY WORLD PHOTOGRAPHY AWARDS 2022

(National award)

In January 2022, the photograph "Born of Fire" received a significant accolade, the "National Award 2022," in one of the largest photographic competitions in the world, the "Sony World Photography Awards."

ASTRONOMY PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR 2022 (APY)

(Aurora category)

Success was also achieved by the photograph "In the Embrace of a Green Lady," which claimed the first place in the "Aurora" category at the awards ceremony for night landscape photographers in London. The photograph was subsequently exhibited at the National Maritime Museum in London.

INTERNATIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY AWARDS 2022 (IPA)

1. Place (Landscape - Professional)

The photograph "Born of Fire" also found success in USA. In the IPA Awards, held annually in New York, it claimed the first position in the "Nature - Landscape (Professional)" category.

MOSCOW INTERNATIONAL FOTO AWARDS 2022 (MIFA)

1. Place (Nature - Professional)

In the prestigious awards ceremony for the best photos of the year in Moscow, the photograph "Born of Fire" secured the top spot for the third time, both in the "Nature - Professional" category and the subcategory "Landscape." As a result, it was exhibited in a gallery in Moscow. This achievement made me the first photographer to achieve the top honor in all of these cities consecutively.

TOKYO INTERNATIONAL FOTO AWARDS 2021 (TIFA)

1. Place (Nature - Professional)

In the prestigious awards ceremony for the best photos of the year in Tokyo, the photograph "Born of Fire" once again claimed the top spot, both in the "Nature - Professional" category and the subcategory "Landscape." As a result, it was exhibited in a gallery in Tokyo.

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BUDAPEST INTERNATIONAL FOTO AWARDS 2021 (TIFA)

1. Place (Nature - Professional)

In the prestigious awards ceremony for the best photos of the year in Budapest, my photograph "Born of Fire" secured the top position in both the "Nature - Professional" category and the subcategory "Landscape." As a result, it was exhibited in a gallery in Budapest.

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REDISCOVER NATURE PHOTO AWARDS 2020 (EEA)

1. Place

In 2020, the photograph "Farewell to the Sun" was selected as the best photograph in the "landscape" category by the European Environment Agency (EEA). As a result, my work was showcased at environmental conferences in Denmark, attended by invited heads of state.

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