Growing up, you could always find me in the corner somewhere, scouring through the pages of Vogue. Although it was mostly to ogle at the clothes that I would never be able to afford in a million years, I was also fascinated by the photography. The composition, the bright colors, and the interesting makeup and poses were all just so wonderful and amazing. And I couldn’t help but feel a spark of something looking at those images. All I knew was that it gave me the urge to do something just as cool as what I saw, thus beginning my obsession with photography.
To be honest, I can’t say that it’s just photography that I’m obsessed with. I just really love art. I’ve been drawing since I was a kid, with cartoons and anime as my guide. Then once I learned to read, I also had comic books and manga as source material. My mom didn’t quite understand my fascination with these things. You could often hear her trying to get me to read an actual book, or in her case the Bible. Watching T.V. and exploring the internet for new source material was not a good use of my time in her opinion. So, in order to her appease her, I started reading other things. Which, in the long run, I realize had the same effect on me as both comic books and manga. I have a very active imagination and so, reading became another source from which I got all my ideas from. I was already super odd prior to the discovery of these things. With all these interests combined, you could essentially call me Luna Lovegood.
Moving on from the subject of how popular I was as an adolescent/teenager (obvious sarcasm) …
My entire time in school was spent drawing. I moved on from drawing cartoon and manga characters, to drawing still-lives, people, animals and nature. I learned how to paint in oil, acrylic, and watercolor. I even learned how to use clay to sculpt pots, bowls, and mini figurines. I was a multi-disciplined artist. And for the most part, I enjoyed it. Yet, I still felt like I was missing something. It wasn’t until my junior year in high school that I was able to truly dig my teeth into photography. Prior to that, most of my photographs were taken with a cheap digital camera I got for my birthday.
In my photography class, we learned how to shoot in film first. We learned the parts of a 35mm camera, how to adjust the controls to get the best image possible, and how to set up a shot. There’s something about shooting with a film camera that is just so thrilling. You never know how the image is going to turn out until you’re developing the film. With painting, you usually have a clear picture of what you want your painting to look like, but not with film photography. And I was absolutely in love with that! That feeling of capturing a moment in time and not knowing what the resulting image would look like, gave me a rush like no other. I still reach that level of excitement today at 29!
As I matured and with the introduction of professional grade digital cameras, my subject matter changed as well. Although, I loved the spontaneous photos that I would take while walking around my city, I began to ask myself what else would I like to photograph. And then, one day it just comes to me, right out of the blue. I want to be a fine art and fashion photographer! Inspired by my love of painting, fashion, and faces, I tried to figure out a way to incorporate all three and this is the direction I want to go in. I want to create cool stuff. I want for my work to be featured in Vogue and art galleries across the world. I have so many ideas waiting to become reality and all I need is just the opportunity to do so.
I am currently redesigning my website and gathering artwork and photoshoots to help inspire me. You should see my wall and my Pinterest – complete and utter chaos. My current project is reimagining what it means to be divine. For so long, the images of gods and goddess in Greek Mythology, have been incredibly…. dare I say it, white. With this project, I want to show that divinity and beauty comes in all shades. I already have a list of gods, goddesses, demigods, and creatures that I want to show in my work. I know that my followers will love it. Plus, as a bonus feature: I want to have behind the scenes looks at what goes into creating each photoshoot.
I want to give my viewers an inside look at my creative process and how I go about coming up with my ideas. I want them to get to know me as the artist. There’s so much beauty that I want to show the world and I want to share my passion for photography. Many art critics don’t consider photography to be art, but I believe it is. Instead of me painting across a canvas, I’m sculpting life to create an image. I want to change people’s perspective on what art is and I want them to reconsider what it is that they’ve been taught.
For me, winning this competition would mean the absolute world to me. This money will help fund this project that I’ve kept on hold for the past two years due to lack of funding and support. I have a vision that I want to show the world and inspire others with. I’ve been working hard to buy all the equipment I need, but I am still a long way from where I need to be. To win would mean less stress and no more long hours at my job to help fund my passion. I believe in my vision, my gifts, and my ability to take my passion to the next level. I just need a little help getting there.