This photo has been sitting in my head for a while, I sketched out the idea last year and forgot about it until recently. Originally, it represented the feeling of being on the outside looking in, not quite fitting. Given current events and the Stay at Home order in effect, this photo feels a bit sarcastic now. I’m so thankful for the ways God has provided during these strange times but I’m also ready to leave the house and not look back.
This is the third and final image for my first small series. I may end up continuing with this idea but right now I need a break from bird masks and covering myself with black paint. This image did not turn out like anything I had in mind but I am happy with the turn that it took. Originally I was going to be stuck inside a giant bird cage while the crow looked at me from the outside, however, the bird cage that I bought to use just made everything look more confusing. It’s week 8 and I’m slowly starting to let go of all those imperfections that I tend to cling so tightly to… progress is being made!
For now this is the final chapter in the ‘story’ I’ve been telling with my last two bird photos. They show a girl slowly letting the darkness inside of her grow larger until she loses herself completely. What started out as something so small soon devoured her. The crow, and the corruption it represents, went from being the girl’s friend to being something she was enslaved to. Now a renegade, the girl realizes that her changed allegiances have her serving the wrong side.
Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.
1 Peter 5:8-9
My Friend, the Crow
When a dove begins to fly with crows its feathers remain white but its heart grows black.
This is my second image in a series that centers around self identity. Last week’s picture was about recognizing the darkness inside of us all; the girl in the photo was seeing a kernel of corruption in herself for the first time and was taken aback by it. This week’s photo is the next step in that process, the girl has begun to embrace the malicious unpleasantries about herself that she once abhorred. Rather than battle the changes that she is undergoing, the girl decides to welcome them as one would an old friend. Slowly the darkness spreads and the girl begins to lose herself.
Give a man a mask and he will show his true face.
The inspiration behind this image is the idea that we all put on various masks and our darkest sides tend to surface when we have something to hide behind. I am always surprised at how nasty I can become at times, as if there were a dark and twisted beast inside just waiting for the right moment to lash out.
I have to say, this image has been one of my favorites to create. Everything about this photo goes against my normal workflow with conceptual photography. I poured a great deal of time and energy into the pre-planning stages while the post-editing stage took the least amount of time. I made the bird mask from scratch using a template I found here. The location I used was right off of a main highway and while I typically like to shoot at more conspicuous locations the concrete slabs had the feel I was searching for. The only time I had available to shoot this photo was on a day when it was 20 degrees outside… not ideal for capturing an image while half naked. My mom was such a wonderful help during all this, she patiently glued the feathers onto my back and offered moral support while I took photos shirtless in the cold on the side of the road. My favorite part about this photo is the sunbeam shining on the feather in my hand. That part was completely unplanned and captured all in camera. I was more concerned about getting out of the cold and less concerned about the lighting that I didn’t even see the way the sun was falling on my arm. It wasn’t until later when I looked at the images in my car that I realized how perfectly that worked out. I love when everything just falls into place!
This image is the first image in a series of three that I will be doing. I have never successfully completed a photo series before so I felt now was as good a time to try as any!
I’m not completely satisfied with this image and there’s a good possibility that I’ll scrap this version and start editing from scratch. Despite that, I am excited about this concept and wanted to share what I have for week 5 of my year-long photography challenge. For some reason I’ve been really inspired by birds and their nests lately. This photo represents the love and nurture we give to the dreams that we hold inside.
Heavy is the Head That Wears the Crown
One of my photographic goals for 2016 is to delve into the characters I’m portraying in my conceptual art and really tell their story. This week’s photo represents the same crowned girl from last week’s image and that was intentional. I have never tried my hand at writing but I am starting to view my conceptual photography as a visual storybook. In my mind, the girl portrayed in my last two photos is mysteriously burdened and isolated by the crown that she wears. I don’t know what the rest of her story holds but I’m excited to find out and share it all with you!
The Crown of Winter
Week 3 was a difficult one for me. I had a number of concepts that I was excited to photograph and I burned through them all in one afternoon. Unfortunately, none turned out the way my mind had visualized so I ended up scrapping them all. This was about the time that the East coast was experiencing heavy snowfall and my little mountain home got buried for four days. Talk about cabin fever. So, on a Sunday afternoon (the day of the week I’m supposed to post a new image for my year-long photography challenge) I marched outside wearing a dress and a foil crown with the intention to make some magic.
The concept itself is not one that I planned in detail which is unusual for me, however, I was happy with the result. My image for Week 4 portrays the same crowned character you see here.
House of Cards
For those of you who don’t know I am doing a photography challenge during 2016 where I post one conceptual image every week for a year. I have been so proud of myself because for the past four weeks I’ve been on time for releasing my weekly image… and then I realized that I wasn’t posting the photos on here! I have been releasing them on Facebook (here) every Sunday but that’s about the extent of it. So here I am, finally catching up on posting my last three images.
This image is one that I’ve held inside for about a year. The edges of it were a bit fuzzy in my mind and I couldn’t quite nail down the details so I kept putting it off. It existed only in my photography journal until one day I decided to just jump right in to see what would happen and this was the result. This image represents the many times I’ve poured my heart and soul into an endeavor just to watch it all crumble to the ground. It can be a heartbreaking experience but it can also be a refreshing and it reminds me that there is hope and light in starting anew.