Signature artist of the month
Polish photographer Izabela Habur fuses bright, bold colors with unique personalities in her effusive photographs. Drawing inspiration from the people around her, she strives to create imagery that feels relevant and authentic. Learn more about January's Signature Artist of the Month.
The vibrant colors, energetic models and unapologetic displays of self-expression are a burst of fun and lightheartedness. While her personality mirrors her images’ cheery disposition, Izabela’s style is quite the contrast to the surroundings she grew up in in post-Communist Poland.
“Growing up, everything was grey, stark and dreary so I have always been drawn to what existed outside of Poland,” she said. “That might be why I gravitate towards imagery that is colorful and full of happiness.”
With limited opportunities available in her country, Izabela learned early on that if she wanted to make something of herself, she had to work for it. Starting out with a career in graphic design, most of the companies she worked for didn’t have big budgets. In order to use imagery other than clip art for her projects, she had to pay for them out of her own pocket. Photography was always a passion of hers, so she began submitting photographs to iStock and instead of receiving compensation, she asked for credits so she could buy images to use at work.
"For me, photography is not about art; I think of myself more as a craftsman than an artist.”
Izabela realized that if she wanted to continue submitting photographs to iStock, she would have to learn English so she could provide proper captions for her images. She decided to move to London as a way to immerse herself in the language and seek new opportunities. The London companies she worked for had budgets that accounted for imagery so she no longer had to pay for them herself. For the first time, she was able to keep the profits from the photographs she sold and decided to pursue photography fulltime.
She has since moved back to Poland with her partner to raise their daughter, but often travels to London for inspiration.
“My photos are all about what’s happening now so it’s helpful to go to a big city like London to people-watch,” Izabela said. “I look at how they’re dressed, what’s in their magazines, how the coffee shops look, and just get a pulse of what people are interested in.”
She takes these observations and applies them to her photography, shooting a diverse mix of people, activities and personalities.
“I’m really drawn to shooting interesting characters and emotions,” she said. “I particularly like portraying strong women. I believe women can do whatever they want in life. I was never taught that I wasn’t equal to a man and I never felt like I couldn’t do certain things just because I was a woman. I try to represent this in my photography by portraying strong, independent women.”
While some photographers consider their work a form of artistic expression, Izabela has always been more interested in creating imagery for advertising purposes.
“My focus is to take great photos that clients can use as a vehicle to express their own message,” Izabela said. “For me, it’s not about art; I think of myself more as a craftsman than an artist.”
As Izabela has become more successful, she has developed her photography into a full-fledged business with four employees working under her. As she continues to grow, she is appreciative for everything a career in photography has afforded her.
“Growing up in such a small place, photography has given me so much that may not have been available to me otherwise, like the ability to travel or owning my own business,” Izabela said. “My love for photography isn’t just about the pictures, but about all the opportunities it provides me with.”
Each month we give away a free image from our Signature Artist of the Month. Download yours now and start creating your own inspiring project.
"This photo was from my first photo session after giving birth to my daughter. I was itching to shoot again but needed to wait patiently for eight months until my daughter and I were ready for a three day separation.
We flew our favorite models from Poland and spent three days in different locations throughout London. I was trying to show what locals do on typical weekend in London. This shot is of our models shopping at Brick Lane Market."