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Ewa Całkosińska : Portraits emerging from an unlimited imagination

by Yvette Depaepe 
Published the 12th of September 2022


Ewa Całkosińska – Kajzer  has an endless imagination and express it in all of her portraits. She likes to use various elements to achieve her goals.  Her favourite elements are plant ornaments, trees, flowers and branches. The elements used from other photos are composed in such a way that they form a coherent whole that interests the viewer. She is persuaded that the main feature of her portraits is her unlimited imagination which sometimes borders on surrealism and that is so true. To Ewa, photography is what breathing is to many others.
Through this interview, I would like to take the readers on a journey through Ewa's fantasy world to learn more about the artist behind her portraits.


'Elf's Dream ...'


My name is Ewa Całkosińska – Kajzer.  I was born in Kalisz and I live in this city for 54 years.
My adventure with photography began in spring, in 2014.  Although I was interested in analogue cameras for a very long time, it never became my life passion till then. Over time, I began to notice some things and memories I wanted to keep forever and it turned out that it was possible with a camera. My first camera was an ordinary Sony compact.  I started getting my first photo awards in ordinary photo groups on Facebook, because at that time I didn't  know any other ways to present my work.


Initially, I photographed flowers, butterflies, landscapes, and with each photo I took, I felt more confident in what I was doing. Awards in photo groups became the norm.  I got a lot of them, but after some time, that was not enough to me any more.


'Silver Wings'



In 2017, I started photographing people. In the beginning, it was difficult and I had to learn a lot. I may mention now that I did not graduate from any photography school, and I did not complete any photography course. I learned everything by myself, using guides, books and internet articles as well as videos on YouTube. Of course, the most important thing was practical exercises, so I photographed almost every day, correcting the mistakes I made.


Portrait photography has become my priority and favourite form of photography.
At the end of 2019, I had to deal with a photo processing program such as Photoshop.  When you don't know anything about it, it's very difficult for a layman.  But the desire and ambition to develop my skills did not allow me to give up.  Although, I must admit that many times I wanted to quit. Now, after less than 3 years, I can say that this program has nearly secrets from me.


When I mastered Photoshop to a sufficient degree, I became very interested in photographic manipulations.  I wanted to create my personal visions and express my imagination in my own photos.


'Enchanted dress'



'A quaint room'




I made my portraits like if they were emerging from my fantasies and mostly, they were characters from the world of horror. 






My portraiture work began to take many forms other than just ordinary portraits started which bored me a bit. It started with little steps becoming bolder and bolder. Simply by looking at a face in a portrait, a different image of a given character was already sprouting in my imagination. I like to use various elements to achieve that goal.  My favourite elements are plant ornaments, trees, flowers and branches. 





'Forest Jellyfish'


Since I was a child, I had a lot of imagination which I used to draw or write poems. I still have a lot of imagination today, only now I use it to create my photographic visions. The mood in such images is created by itself. The elements used from other photos are composed in such a way that they form a coherent whole that will interest the viewer. I think that the main feature of my portraits is the use of unlimited imagination which sometimes borders on surrealism and that is what I like the most.


My workflow is spread over several days. When creating a portrait, I first think about how it looks like in my imagination. Then the process in my mind starts and can take several days.  It is not like creating one such portrait takes even several days, it's not like I start doing something and the project and working on it from A to Z. Sometimes I'm changing something radically while processing and the result is completely different from what I had in mind.  Often, when portraits deviate from my original plan, they are the best.

We all know the saying that it is not the equipment that makes good photography and that is true.  But we cannot say that good equipment is not needed because it helps a lot.  Anyway, I personally do not have any special equipment to create my portraits.
I take pictures with a Canon EOS 90D camera and so far I took some of them with even worse equipment.
I have some of the simplest lenses. I take portraits with a Canon 50mm lens with 1.8 light. I don't use lamps because I love available light.
I also don't use blends or others because I'm usually alone during sessions, so I don't have any helpers and I have to handle everything by myself. I don't use a tripod either, I know it may sound strange, but I really can handle it with a minimum of equipment. Although I have a tripod, I rarely use and only for landscape photography.


I don't think I have particular favourite photographers. I don't think I have any particular ones. II just like good photography, whether it is landscape photography, street photography or portraiture.  I have to like it and there must be something that attracts my attention.


To me, photography is what breathing is to others.  I probably wouldn't be able to live without it, although I have better or worse days of course. I can't do anything by force.

1x is a great platform in which I find myself and that is not the case on many other portals.
Here I see the results of my work, I can watch the votes. I am not a commercial photographer but an artist and this is the most important thing for me.  Although it happens but rarely, that I work commercially. I don't like taking money for what is an artistic expression to me.


Greetings to everyone who will read this article, and thanks a lot for the opportunity to tell my story.








'The Hatter'



'The ghosts of my nightmares'



'Diary found in Saragossa'



'Winter angel'



'The magic of my dreams'



'In the cave of helplessness'



'Girl with a raven'


Beautiful, original e creative work Ewa, congrats
Bardzo dziękuję :)
Very inspirational...
Intriguing, original, creative art. Wonderful images, Ewa. Every one tells a story that is full of emotion and hope. Keep up the good work! Thanks , Yvette for this introduction.
Thanks for your appreciation, dear Ludmila !
Dziękuję bardzo :)
Great art, outstanding imagination and visions. Compliments
Bardzo dziękuję :)
Beautiful work such a vivid imagination, congratulations Ewa
Bardzo dziękuję :)
Great set of wild and wonderful images - Congratulations Well done... Ewa
Bardzo dziękuję :)
Dear Ewa, it was a pleasure to interview you. Thanks for your fine collaboration and for sharing your work on 1x. Congratulations, my friend. Cheers, Yvette
Bardzo dziękuję i pozdrawiam serdecznie :)