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Radovan Bartek: A Story of Five Photographs


Radovan Bartek is a professional freelance photographer and retoucher. He works in a very close cooperation with Stanislav Petera. He is a retouch and montage lecturer at Light Garden Academy. Most of all, he enjoys taking creative cinematic photos. Here you can have a look at some of them and read about how they were made.

Harley Quinn 

Image 1My first ‘real’ photo shoot where we prepared everything from A to Z. At that time, Suicide Squad was a big hit in cinemas. Having seen the film, I arranged a cosplay shooting of Harley Quinn with Katka Jakubíčková as a model. We wanted the picture to look as real as possible, so together we started to look for Harley’s costume. I managed to borrow the T-shirt from one shop and Katka put together the rest of the costume. Once we had everything we needed, we called in a make-up artist David Kučera and he did an amazing job. On the day of the shooting, we spent almost 3 hours preparing everything. The most time-consuming part was getting the model ready, but it was worth it. I illuminated the scene by FOMEI battery flashes. We created several nice atelier photos but when I saw them in my computer, I thought it would be a shame to settle for this result. What followed were several days of montage that resulted in this final photo which is really great. I thank the whole team for the excellent cooperation. This photo couldn’t have been made without them.


Image 2Daniela is a friend of mine who asked me if I could take a photo of her in my style. She had plenty of common portraits, but she wanted a different, unusual picture. Daniela is a great photographer herself; she works under the pseudonym MyDannie. Another discipline she’s extremely good at is painting. (All the paintings in the photo are Daniela’s works.) I gave it some thought, and I came up with the idea of shooting Daniela the way she normally looks and while doing something she likes to do. Then I started to look for a suitable place. With a huge help from a teacher of the Faculty of Fine Arts in Brno we were able to have the photo shoot there. The whole scene is illuminated by FOMEI Fresnels which created the ‘film’ light. We got a great material which I then spruced up in post-production. Daniela now has a photo that captures her true, everyday self. Thank you to MyDannie for putting her trust in me and letting me photograph her.


Image 3I created this photo after a rather long series of portraits. Back then, Kong: Skull Island got to cinemas. It’s a film with incredible CGI. One of the shots stuck in my memory and I knew I wanted to create something similar. I discussed the idea with my friend Lukáš Kout, who is a post-production genius and then I got to work. I prepared everything I needed, and I went to see a friend of mine whom I photographed as the last piece of the puzzle. I used two FOMEI battery flashes to photograph him. A large part of this picture was created in post-production, which is probably clear to everyone – it would be quite hard to look for a real Kong somewhere at a ZOO.


Image 4This portrait was created in a rather hectic situation. We were shooting a wedding editorial with Iveta and the plan was to take a photo for me in a sunflower field when we were ready with that. The editorial took more time than we’d expected, and we had about half an hour before the sunset. So we went to the sunflower field. After a hasty ride I was horrified to find that the sunflowers had been harvested and there was nothing left in the field. Without further ado, we got on the car and drove several kilometres back to a corn field. At that moment I thought that corn would make a decent substitute for sunflowers. Iveta put on her favourite outfit and we got to work. The sun was setting, but we managed to take this portrait. Two weeks later, Iveta was crowned Miss Czech Republic 2018, which made me all the happier. I couldn’t help but smile when I learnt who the winner of Miss 2019 was – it was Nikola Kokyová whom I’d photographed a month before the final. So it seems that if I shoot another Miss finalist this year, she will become the winner.

Alisa a Sára  

Image 5A series with amazing models from the Eskimo-Bohemia Model Management agency. I met the girls short time ago when they posed for us at a seminar. After that I approached them for my own project. I am an admirer of the late Peter Lindbergh, a photographer who worked for the most prestigious fashion brands. He has become a legend in portrait photography and his work inspires me a lot. So I told the girls that my intention was to shoot them in the portrait style of Mr Lindbergh. I bought women’s suits, I asked Linda Chudomelová, a great make-up artist, to do the girl’s make-up, and we were ready to shoot. The whole scene was lit only by one FOMEI Fresnel light. I achieved several very good photos which I then retouched and converted to black and white. I enjoyed making this series immensely and I definitely want to make more series like this in future.