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when artists meet

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Free to Be (pt. i)

I adore when Natasha and I get a chance to connect. 

My best work happens when the person I am photographing loves my work, and doesn't judge themselves for being a part of the process. When Natasha and I connect, all we know is that our goal is make dope images! She's not worried about how she looks. It's my job to make sure I capture her beautifully. We're not worried about peoples' judgment of what we create. That's none of our business. 

Today I asked her to bring a couple of outfits that I could shoot her wearing - and barely wearing. We rode around for a bit, looking for a fresh location, and once we found something, we got to work. I tell her what I have in mind. She tells me the options and suggests what she thinks might work. We Go! Because she trusts my work, neither of us have to be insecure about the strange direction I have to give to get what I see in my head. She knows all I want to do is make something amazing that we can share and be proud of.

This is a bit of what we did this July 4th. 

 

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Your Friendly Misanthrope

It's funny how people connect. I first met Hannah a few months ago at Art Chat Charlotte. I stopped in to observe the discussion about Performance Art (Dialogue in Action), and I remember her because she had on what I considered to be an unusual outfit, and posed an awesome question during the session that opened up some very interesting dialogue. 

A few weeks ago, my friend Lovonia mentioned Friendly Misanthrope, and though I didn't make the connection to the small-framed woman from Art Chat, I checked out the page on Instagram and started following.

Last week, I was one of 15 artists invited to participate in a session of Collecting Pile, a collaborative community drawing project that is going on through June (check it out when you get a chance). Anyways, Hannah was one of the other artists invited to this particular session, and as we spoke, she reminded me about our first meeting. She was now more familiar with my work, and expressed enjoying how I celebrate real figures and diversity in my photo work. We decided we should link again soon to continue our conversation. When I went back and reviewed her IG page, I knew she would be a fun person to get in front of the lens. I contacted her about being photographed, and she was down. Below are the highlights of our first collaboration.

Lately, I've been wanting to explore more overtly sexual themes with my photography, but haven't been sure how I wanted to address this. From my discussion with Hannah, I knew she would be able to help me create images that were more overtly sexual, but not about sex in the context it's usually presented. I wanted to create images that were "erotic, whimsical, and fun".  When she came by we had more awesome conversation about movies, diversity in art, health issues, beauty standards, and the differences in process of photographing herself and being photographed by someone else (me).

I really can't wait until my next meeting with Hannah. We'll probably grab a coffee, talk way too much, and figure out what to do the next time she is in front of this lens!

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