Body Paint Portraits
For this project, I offered some friends the opportunity to display an identity or element of their personality that is difficult to observe from the surface, or to convey a message they wanted to express to the world but couldn’t find the words to do so.
I hope it was as deeply inspiring and liberating for them as it was for me–I had an absolute blast painting, photographing, and listening to each and every one of them.
In this portrait series, I asked my models to respond to something that had been said to them over the course of their lives (or in one particular moment) that had been especially hurtful and difficult to move beyond.
Beneath each photo is the phrase that was said to them, and in the captions they have finally given their answer.
I hope this series serves as a reminder that everything we say to one another matters. Without even realizing the gravity of our words, we may all too easily inflict long-lasting pain on those we love. If we can do nothing else, we can at least control that.
So remember to be kind to one another, to be understanding, and to recognize that your words matter.
The reality of societal pressures to look and play traditional gender roles is sometimes unbearable. Our concepts of man and woman are outdated, our concept of gender expression archaic. In the realm of fashion, these flaws are made especially clear.
Through this brief series, focused on the female experience in particular, I hope to point out some of what we say to the women around us, often completely oblivious to the underlying messages being sent. I hope to illustrate the ways in which these things eat at us, push us in a million different directions all at once, and ultimately leave us hurt, confused, angry, and in some cases, irreversibly damaged. I’ve just barely skimmed the surface here, but I hope it gets people thinking.