Digital photography, 40" x 20" Part of the Reflection series:
- Intellect. Digital photography, 20" x 24"
- Responsibility. Digital photography, 20" x 24"
- Indignation. Digital photography, 20" x 24"
- Adventure. Digital photography, 20" x 24"
- Strength. Digital photography, 20" x 24"
- Confusion. Digital photography, 20" x 24"
- Articulation. Digital photography, 40" x 20"
Artist Statement Over the course of my life, I have been exposed to many different types of people, groups, cultures, and classes. I quickly became aware of the judgments and opinions of others and the effect that it has had on my own sense of identity. In my work, I use photography to explore the themes of Identity, Phases of Life, and Societal Attitudes in order to better understand myself, others and society as a whole.
I tend to investigate themes that involve human interaction, attitudes, and behaviors. I am intrigued by the way that people interact and how culture, society, and environment can influence behaviors. I start by researching the theme: defining terms, making associations, and investigating past approaches. I make photographic sketches by experimenting with different types of lighting, setting, mood, and composition, in order to see what works best. I enjoy working with both natural environments and studio lighting, but I appreciate the control studio lighting offers and the many moods that can be suggested. I also, often work with photo editing software to enhance the quality and cohesiveness of my images.
My current body of work focuses on the awkward adolescent phase of life, during which many individuals are at the most malleable and vulnerable to influence. Young adults begin to pick up on societal stereotypes and the attached judgments of character and start to experiment with image and identity. All of these experiences combine to form a person’s sense of self within society. I express this by using self-portraits to show the different stages and explorations of my own path to self-discovery; each stage is represented by different cultural stereotypes such as Goths, Party Girls, and Tom-boys, to communicate the vast differences in societal influences of personality. The viewer brings their own identity struggles and cultural opinions which creates an interesting mix of correlation and dissension. The result is a series of seven portraits that reflect conflict of self from an individual and societal stand point.
Reflection is the culmination of my own experiences and explorations of identity. Researching and creating this body of work has led me to a better understanding of the way cultural groups and societal views have influenced my own sense of self, but it has also made me aware of how uniquely other individuals can be influenced.