High on mushrooms with my best friend on my 22nd birthday, sitting in the dirt, watching him play in the trees on the mountain, all of time seemed to have collapsed on itself, and at the risk of sounding like hocus pocus, everything in material reality seemed like a big inside joke. It seemed obvious to me that our bodies are new, but our souls old, if old is even measurable at all; but that the soul and body are not the same. Faced with the physical reality that is my body; one of a young woman, of what I’ve learned is “classically beautiful”, “striking”, a genetic lottery of sorts, and at the same time, in a constant immune battle against itself and in near daily danger just for existing, just for being a female person, the lesser sex; all things I struggle to consolidate inside myself everyday, I remembered, re~learnt, decided, that my body carries lessons I can learn, this time around. That the vessel I carry doesn’t define me, and doesn’t decide my fate necessarily, but has much to teach, it has much to inform my experience of living, and is an essential tool in my art.
Over the past couple of days I’ve been going through all of my photographs, putting together some options for an upcoming school project to make a ‘graphic novel/visual narrative/book’. I don’t want to give too much away/it’s still in the planning/research stages so will likely evolve considerably throughout it’s creation, but I’m working with the themes of skin, specifically my own skin and psoriasis (which is a chronic auto immune disease that causes my skin cells to multiply too quickly, and covers over 70% of my body in scab like, red circular patterns), as well as imagery & ideas I relate or attach to it. Like:
flowers, dust, crystals, blood, the nervous system, cells, wounds, scar tissue, the female body as public space, toxins, stars, solar systems, leopard print, patterns (in design and metaphorically), paint, fungus, fish, lace, chalk, femininity, fragility, (re-defining) beauty, ect.
Mostly I’ve been scanning, cropping and editing for hours while drinking cocktails and feeling strangely inspired by just tinting a bunch of forgotten photo’s pink. ‘skin hues’.
Right now I’m almost as far back as exactly a year ago and I just love the way this one from my road trip across the USA last April, taken at the Grand Canyon, turned out.
(I liked it so much it’s also my new header photo!)
Also, last night I was hanging out with a dear old friend, Mattew Donnelly, who I’ve known for… maybe since I was a pre-teen? We couldn’t remember when we met exactly but it was definitely pre-2005 (the year I turned 14), he later made my high school grad dress! (which was also the same year he graduated from his BFA) He’s a fashion designer and now living in NYC, we were having a blast at his studio till super late, as in almost 5am (this is where I was photo editing with the help of cocktails, and cupcakes, and Cher remixes).
Afterwards we took a cab, my first NYC cab even! The text on the photo is from one of the many lovely things our cab driver said. Another favorite, which he said a few minutes after this initial beautiful phrase, was,
“New York City, always 24 hours. Someone is always getting up to go to work. Someone is always going to bed.”
To which I responded, “It’s always the beginning of the world.” And we laughed.
My favorite shop on Saint Laurent.My walk to school. Taken downtown, beside the McGill campus.Taken in an alley way right before I took this.Super cute sculptures in progress by a friend in my drawing class.
I put rhinestone diamonds on every part of my arm where I have psoriasis as research for a self portrait using these on a 2D painting of myself for a sculpture project in drawing class.
pulling all of my hair out before noon.
can’t stop the scratch.
what was my scalp scatters the floor.
I read online that today is the most depressing day of the year, on average.
Makes sense, as it’s the middle of January and friggen cold.
But, thanks to my very scientific experiments, I’m convinced that creativity is the best antidote to depression. Much like the sensations of romantic love, creative production is a passionate act. You become enthralled, consumed and enthusiastic. Everything else seems to melt away, endorphins take over and you find yourself feeling like a kid again.
I spent this afternoon eating Vietnamese food and taking pictures with Colby in his cozy apartment transformed into photography studio. Stand your bed up on it’s side and voila, so much valuable floor space for me to lie all over.
When I got there Abraham was already in the bath tub, to save space I’m assuming.
He just looked so pretty in there, I put on a frilly dress and climbed in.
I love the collaborative aspect of photography, especially when posing or modeling. (These pictures were my idea but Colby took them.) There’s a very interesting type of conversation between “model” and photographer in this way, an equal exchange of ideas, and in turn, greater inspiration. I suggest something I’d like to do and he directs me on how to make it better, he suggests something and I interpret it through my body and figure out what’s possible. It’s like performing, with a constant personal director.
(And) even between our combined visions, things happen that we didn’t expect,
like that I look about 12 years old here:
(And) like most (pleasant) experiences, the unexpected is usually the best part.
The original idea was for him to be on top of me, with just my limbs showing out of the tub and wrapped around him, but he’s way to heavy so we did this instead:
He’d found an army uniform, or “battledress” from 1971 that was made for a very small man, so naturally it fits me almost exactly. Wearing it, I sat/lay on his bedroom floor in the corner where he had his slide projector aimed and he took pictures. Images of gardens, oceans and family vacations reflected on the wall, uniform and my skin.
So fun, like playing a game.
How many ways can the human form interact with a 2D projected image?
I think (hope) they’re going to turn out really beautifully. I’d post a sneak preview but my camera batteries had died and Colby only shoots film so now it’s a waiting game.
And of course I’ve saved the most sexual for last. Ha.
can not help but scrape lipstick off.
nails to mouth.
this week of not sleep.
but I want to write so much.
to publish 4 blog posts at once.
my skin all wants to come off.
nails to silver skin.