Lyubomir Sergeev, or for short, Lubo, is a creator of the highest caliber: an award-winning digital artist, photographer, and impeccable visual storyteller, boasting a hauntingly beautiful, timeless, and seductive aesthetic. With 20 years of experience in advertising and high-end retouching, his conceptual genius and lust for creation truly make him a force to be reckoned with.
His work is exquisite, possessing an innate attention to detail where every nuance is accounted for, no drop of water or pop of color left behind, leaving viewers in a constant state of awe. Lubo’s perfectionist planning is a talent in itself; a process that allows him to be involved at all levels of production-casting, location scouting, and art direction-making him a sought-after addition to any project.
Clients include HTC, Phillips, Gillette, Audi, Mercedes, Belvedere, Rotana and Eduardo Miroglio, amongst others. Most recent updates to his awards list are One Eyeland Photographer of the Year and Trierenberg Super Circuit Grand Prix.
Production Paradise: You lived both in New York and Sofia, Bulgaria. Has this diversity and living abroad helped you to broaden your mind and create your own, so unique style?
Lubo Sergeev: I believe that being able to experience as many diverse worlds as possible is what life is all about! Being able to quickly hop between locations with different cultures, history and beliefs is the most precious of all the benefits I have from being a traveling commercial photographer. Today I am in an Austrian castle shooting a fashion commercial, yesterday I was at Venice Beach in Los Angeles and tomorrow – alone in the Tunisian desert hunting for shapes in the dunes. This easily broadens my mind tremendously to levels which most of the times I don’t even realise while they are happening, but this potential force builds up slowly and quietly forms me not only as an artist and creative but also as a human being. Constantly traveling between New York and Sofia is like seeing two completely different worlds working under different rules but beating in the same rhythm – an experience which highly enriches my vision and helps me very much to keep my adaptiveness constantly highly agile – a quality very important for any commercial photographer. However, a very important part of this whole experience is to be able to acquire that elusive moment of calmness after each so-called storm, which is needed to acknowledge all events, to stop and witness these worlds from afar and quietly observe the power of each tiny fraction of time that has happened. This is actually the most cherished of all the experience I gain while travelling so much.
Production Paradise: Your photography looks like a complete, profound and well-composed piece of art. How does your process of creation look like? Where do you take your inspiration from?
Lubo: Strangely enough, I do not take my inspiration from photography and photographers so often that one may think. I take it from painters, sculptors, illustrators, CGI artists, and cinematographers. The way I create most of my works is an elaborate process of meticulous planning where I have every single detail prepared before the shooting and I leave only a few things, mostly the most emotional part, to chance. Everything else is thoroughly prepared prior to the shoot to the very tiny piece of hair and muscle movement. However, every once and awhile, depending on the project, I do count on the talents to provide that precious uniqueness to the project mostly by being themselves. All of my objects are living beings, most of them women and they always play a certain role. A role dedicated to my perusal of their inner world, dedicated to the story I am telling, dedicated to the expressiveness of the whole picture and a role which, most of the times, I have carefully created out of thin air according to the given task.
Production Paradise: When I look at your work, I feel like stopping for a moment and thinking what story is this photo telling. Tell us, what kind of message you are trying to convey in your art?
Lubo: One thing: “Beauty”.
I believe that a photograph, no matter if it is serving as a piece of art or as a documentary, evidence, memory or whatever, on top of all it should be beautiful. As their universal goal, all artists are entitled to provide everyone visions of their dreams, of their icons, ideals, daydreams and thus to nurture their thirst for beauty. In its nature, this is actually a very deep internal reflection of the artists themselves. Reflection of their beliefs, understanding of ethics, aesthetic and system of pure human values. That is why artists usually portray in their works a reflection of themselves and the world, not only as they see it, but also as they feel it and live it. No matter if I am a commercial photographer or fine art photographer or any other type of photographer, my eternal ultimate task is to create and sustain a vision of everything, which is beautiful, everything that we as human beings dream of, everything related to our never-ending thirst for aesthetics and the pure ecstasy of being able to touch our mortality to the everlasting vastness of art.
Production Paradise: How would you define yourself as an artist?
Lubo: It is quite difficult to define myself and I believe that most artists are actually using a definition of themselves, which someone else has given them under certain conditions. I do get lost in my work every once in a while. I also get a very clear picture of what I do quite often. But the truth is that I mostly feel it, rather than I think of it and the really tricky part is to be highly emotional when you have to and less when it is not needed. This I think comes with experience and built up professionalism. To be able to empower your inner self and keep that power on a very precisely measured leash is what counts the most. So, when it comes to the emotional reading of my work, it is quite easy to define myself, but if I have to do it in a somewhat more professional sense, I leave that to others.
Production Paradise: Is there any photo that has a special story behind it? Or that is special for you?
Lubo: As a person, I am a very oriented towards the future by nature. I totally do not live in the past and if I have to remember a certain photo and the events around its creation I struggle quite a lot. I constantly look for the next thing, which is lined up in the queue of projects and probably the only few occasions when I formally announce, mostly to myself, a particular photo or project as special is when it has had involved in the making some special to me people. Other than that, every photo, which originates from my imagination ends up to be very dear to me.
Production Paradise: Your photography has a lot of resemblance to paintings. Who is your inspiration?
Lubo: As I mentioned, I get inspired by all sorts of artists. I can’t say that I really have a particular one who inspires me the most but indeed I have always leaned towards the classical ages. The classicism, the neoclassicism, and everything related to the harmonious aesthetics and ideals of the human figure, combined with dynamic, elaborately directed compositions and simply, but esthetically to the very edge lit images has always been a huge inspiration of mine.
Production Paradise: How long can it take to create a piece of work such as yours? It seems like a lengthy process to go through.
Lubo: It is indeed a lengthy process and I really enjoy every second of it. I have had productions which take over a month to prepare and another month to go through the post-processing stage. Usually the more time we spend on the preproduction, the less we spend on the post and this is quite typical for every production, I go through. I do love incorporating animals into my works and when I do the shooting process itself also takes longer. I find this to be somewhat of a challenge and in general, I love to challenge myself constantly. I can honestly say that at the time I have had started preparing many of my most cherished projects I have not had the slightest clue how I would have realised the idea and accomplished the task. Since I am doing this for more than 20 years, with time the way I deal with tasks is getting easier and I get very close to flawless in executing nearly impossible shoots, which I have never even tried before. This is where the higher risk pays the better and the overall gained experience helps immensely.
Production Paradise: How do you think Production Paradise is helping you to promote your work?
Lubo: I have been using Production Paradise’s services for more than 5 years now and by being listed in the directory and featured in the Spotlight and Showcase magazines on a certain regular basis my online presence and marketing are strengthened and kept solid. I don’t believe in promoting my work solely on Production Paradise but combining it with other online efforts and resources proves as a formidable weapon.