This article originally appeared on VICE Romania.
Florin Țepârdea works in IT, but he also has a passion for photography. His first project, My Rear Window (titled after Alfred Hitchcock's 1954 film) illustrates Romanian student life seen from the window of a room in Bucharest's university campus. I got in touch with him to find out how he started photographing his neighbors and what they think about this.
VICE: How did the project start?
Florin Țepârdea: My girlfriend is a med student and I spend my weekends in her room, on campus. One day I was on her balcony, photographing whatever caught my eye, when I noticed a girl on the balcony across from me. She was dusting a blanket. And I thought: What if I start documenting the students' lives? All photos were taken from the same balcony, the one in my girlfriend's dorm room.
You showed me your favorite photograph [the one at the beginning of the article]. Tell me why you like it so much.
I like the contrast between their poses. He is standing, stretching, looking out; meanwhile she is all curled up in a corner, reading. I always look for them when I walk around campus, I check out the benches, the bars. They're stuck in my mind.
Do the people who appear in your photos know they have been photographed?
I posted the album on one of the students' groups on Facebook. I am guessing they have seen it. People were talking around uni in the first days after I posted them.
Did anyone complain about you invading their intimacy?
Nobody complained, even though I was a little worried about this. I thought a lot about it, at the beginning. Then I concluded that none of the photos puts them in a bad light. They are decent, nice photos.
What was your girlfriend doing while you were taking photos at her window?
She was studying for exams.