Life through the lens of Chloe Kaczkurkin

Chloe Kaczkurkin at a sunflower field in Pennsylvania.

LANSDALE – Whether it’s the photograph of a local North Penn student or one of a famous celebrity, photographer Chloe Kaczkurkin is continuing to improve her skills of transforming real life into photographs.

Kaczkurkin is a junior at North Penn High School and has been an avid student in photography and art since middle school. Her preferred style of photographs are portraits, which are photographs of people.

“I love to capture the moments, that’s the main thing that I love about photography,” she expressed, “I love to capture the moments of people growing up thinking that they’ll always look back on it.”

I love to capture the moments of people growing up thinking that they’ll always look back on it.”

— Chloe Kaczkurkin

Kaczkurkin has found that by taking pictures of people, she can show them a vision of themselves that they’ve never seen before. She schedules photoshoots with a variety of different people: North Penn students, families, and even strangers, but, regardless of who they are, the process is always the same.

“Depending on who it is and the location, I’ll ask them if they have any visions of their photos,” Kazcurkin said about her photoshoot preparation. “I’ll also make suggestions to the models and create Pinterest boards of poses, so it’s not that pressuring for them.”

In early March, Kaczkurkin attended an influencer event in Orlando, Florida called Playlist Live. There, she met famous influencers like YouTuber James Charles and had the opportunity to ask people for shoots.

“I felt like I was going crazy,” Kaczkurkin reflected on her experience meeting such influential people. “I’ve been really shy in the past, but I’ve been gaining more confidence in photography because it’s such a nice break for me.”

“Playlist Live was really fun because I could meet a lot of influencers and be connected with a bunch of different brands and people that could help me grow as a person,” Kaczkurkin said. “We share our tips and tricks and it’s really fun to work with people who love the same thing as you do.”

Ever since going to that event, Kaczkurkin’s social media has blown up. Her most liked photo on her Instagram has over 30,000 likes and it is one of her with popular musician, Payton Moormeier.

“It was alarming at first,” Kaczkurkin reminisced on her surprising increase in followers. “But it’s been a lot of people’s dream to be famous recently with the opportunities it gives. I would really like to be an influencer someday and spread ideas. I want to be positive and show people you can express yourself in all types of ways.”

In the past, Kaczkurkin has struggled with her confidence and photography was a way for her to break out of her shell and start experimenting with new experiences. And not only has photography helped her, but modeling has become a major part of her life as well. 

“I’ve had some trouble with my confidence, but I really want to start promoting that it’s okay not to look like every person you see one your feed who’s perfectly posed. It’s okay to have moments where you’re not sure about yourself—for positivity,” she said.

I’ve had some trouble with my confidence, but I really want to start promoting that it’s okay not to look like every person you see one your feed who’s perfectly posed. It’s okay to have moments where you’re not sure about yourself—for positivity.”

— Chloe Kaczkurkin

Kaczkurkin’s aunt is the person who introduced her to modeling and ever since starting it, she has loved it. She now models for a small brand called the World Fashion Media News and has multiple photos of herself featured on their social media.

“It’s really cool to be on both sides of the camera,” Kaczkurkin said. “It helps me pose people better and I can feel what they’re feeling. Sometimes, when they’re just not getting the vibe that they like a pose, I can feel it out because I’ve been there too. I can sometimes even  step in front of the camera to lead them and be like, ‘tilt your head a little here’ or ‘move this hair back’ instead of them being confused.”

Kaczkurkin’s background in art has played a significant role in her love for photography. She currently takes both art and photography classes at North Penn and hopes to use her knowledge in each subject to help the other.

“I want to get into what we do in art, which is making our own composition with expressive feelings,” Kaczkurkin said. “Art helps me build compositions, it’s really expressive and I want to put that in photography rather than the posed pictures I’m doing now.”

As a student in her photography class, her teacher, Mrs. Joanna Carrick, believes that Kaczkurkin can make it in such a competitive career.

Chloe is a creative student with an amazing eye for photography,” Carrick said. “She is willing to experiment and try different things and takes initiative with a drive that I see as fundamental to succeeding with photography or any artistic pursuit.”

Looking back on some of her old photos, there is a multitude of things Kaczkurkin would do differently because she’s grown not only in her art but as a person.

A woman speaks at a BLM rally in Lansdale in the summer of 2020. This image is one of a variety that Chloe Kaczkurkin (Chloe Kaczkurkin)

“I’m trying to find my style now more,” she said. “I used to love black and white, but now I’m experimenting more with color and different types of photography, like advertising.”

While it may seem like Kazckurkin is on stable ground now, her plans after high school remain uncertain.

“My future has been something I’ve been really worked up about recently and honestly, I’m not sure. I’m really confident in my work and being able to grow but I’m just going to do general study right now and figure out what I’m going to do down the road,” she said.

Some advice given by Carrick has been to just keep practicing.

Shoot! Shoot! Shoot!” Carrick insisted as advice for Kaczkurkin when pursuing photography. “Keep taking photos. Just as an athlete trains or a musician practices, a visual artist needs to keep working and experimenting to develop their eye, creative thinking, and expressive abilities. Studying photography and art history, in addition to many other subjects in college or on your own, can be a great way to open your mind and make you aware of so many different aspects of our world that could inspire you to create art.”

I just want to be inspiring to other photographers someday because a lot of other photographers inspire me.”

— Chloe Kaczkurkin

Kaczkurkin’s fears about her future are justified in today’s world with many teenagers unsure about how different their experiences will be in such abnormal circumstances, but she knows that it’s going to be hard and is willing to roll with it.

“I’m more of an easygoing person, so I don’t have to have it all figured out yet. Some people are all figured out, but I’m just not sure yet,” Kaczkurkin said. “But it’s ok not to have your whole life planned out. I just want to be inspiring to other photographers someday because a lot of other photographers inspire me.”

Where to contact for a photoshoot/where to see more photos:

Chloe’s personal Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/chloe.kaczkurkin/

Chloe’s photography Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/capturesfromchloe/