Photographing enthusiasm
Edition 94
Emily Kornya, photographer and Instagrammer, never misses Pitti Bimbo. We asked her to talk about her work, her passions, and her photoshoot in Florence, featuring a selection of autumn-winter 2022/23 collections.

By Giuliana Parabiago
About you and your job: how did you start? What do you like? What are you working on at the moment?
I was born and grew up in Toronto, Canada, I think I may actually be the only Canadian photographer at Pitti! I started photography at age 17,  in 2010, when I did a school photography course around Europe, we went to 6 countries in one month! I immediately loved doing photography and loved to capture natural images or people. However, even then, I knew I wanted to work in fashion and with children, as I loved working with kids as they are so imaginative and playful! 

After my course, I started looking at other photographers, magazines, designers, styling etc. I then tried to do some fun shoots with younger kids I knew. When I was 19 I got my first real experience in the children's fashion world when I got the opportunity to shoot the runway at the Petite Parade kid's fashion show in NYC. From then I started to write emails to the designers at the show, as well as magazines and other designers I had researched online, I started my journey of avid networking. Of course, I needed a much bigger portfolio to get any "good" jobs, but I was (and still am) really eager!

In 2014, I had my first job with independent designers "The Small Gatsby" and "Hilda & Henri" for Fall/Winter '14. I I moved to Paris and shot for "Lamantine" and "Bleu Comme Gris". Since then, I have moved to Berlin, and worked all around Europe and in Toronto and the USA, shooting for Flik Flak, Baghera, Aigner, Sophie La Girafe, Bugatti, Naturino. I am an avid runway photographer, and have a real passion for shooting the runway at Pitti since 2014. I love the energy and atmosphere! Today, I am not only the photographer, but also do the production, styling, casting and social media/content creation.
What are your thoughts on Pitti Bimbo?
Pitti Bimbo is always a highlight of my year! I love everything about it, the energy, the excitement, the opportunity! I have been coming to Pitti since June 2014, and I was enamored by the incredible production of the runways, they are such high quality and unique. I would say my favorites are always the Monnalisa and Il Gufo shows, they really tell a story. Pitti Bimbo to me is like a "family reunion": it is the time to see all my friends and colleagues from the fashion world, and all the kids I have gotten to know. Some of these kids I have been shooting for years, and it is really fun to get to know them and their families. 
What is the relationship you have with the children? What do your sets look like?
I love working with kids as they are imaginative and playful, and they create genuine reactions for photos. Of course, it's a lot of hard work, but it is enjoyable and energizing. At the beginning of University I considered becoming an elementary school teacher, however I prefered a career in fashion and photography. I love to get to know the kids over the years and both keep shooting with the same ones and also meeting new ones. My favorite place to shoot is on the streets, with kids running around and being free and natural. I am very open minded to all sorts of cool sets! I would love to do something on a mountain in the winter! 
Which style do you prefer for children?
I love the luxury and glamor of many Italian designers, the romance and delicate details of more classic French/Spanish designers, I am a big fan of brands that are urban and with a rock or punk vibe, and as a contrast to that I also love something dreamy and whimsical. I will just see items that speak to me, and then put those all together. 
Tell us something about the photoshoot in Florence.
The kids all really got along well and wanted to play, they had great chemistry. I prepared four different types of styles groups from what I saw at the fair for the Fall/Winter 2022/23 Season, those being; college style, natural and light tones, sportswear style, and an urban/streetwear style. I had the kids play games and interact with each other on the streets. I want the kids to play and interact with each other like they are friends already, so I ask them questions and try to get them to start conversations together and play different games. Games that work particularly well for shoots are "Uno, Due, Tre Stella" , "Broken Telephone" and "Simon Says".
Emily Kornya is a Canadian born children’s fashion, advertising and runway photographer who now resides in Berlin and works all around Europe and North America. She began her career at the age of nearly 20 years old by shooting a children's fashion show in NYC. To date Emily has shot for well regarded and high end designers such as: Flik Flak (Swatch), Aigner, Bugatti, Sophie La Girafe, Bisgaard, Baghera, the Pitti Bimbo Runway to name a few. In her free time her favourite thing to do is travel!