We are going to start doing a few guest posts here. I don’t know how regular they will be, but I expect to get several in per year. The simple goal is to share some cool work out there with my readers and expose some of these artists to a new group of people! Guests will be sharing a bit about themselves, their philosophies, and their futures.
For the first one, I invited in a friend, best known to the world as Miss Aniela. She is very popular on Flickr, to say the least! I will not talk about her too much… it’s best to let her describe herself! I asked her to include three of her favorite photos, and then I picked one of my own favorites at the bottom.
Miss Aniela, from Brighton, UK
Most of my work as it stands currently is self-portraiture. I got into this when I first discovered the world of photo-sharing in 2006. Since then I have had two exhibitions and I now speak at international tradeshows and events and work full-time as a photographer.
I like to create images that are primarily visually pleasing: treats for the eyes that use stimulating colour, composition and angle. In my latest work, I keep this approach but with more of a view to incorporating a certain concept within the planning, but allowing for some of the spontaneity as in my earlier work.
I hope people like my work for its aesthetics, but I also take pride in being a ‘one-woman show’ in creating my work; independently photographing, modelling for, processing and then sharing online. So far I have used only improvised lighting, basic equipment and haphazard locations. I find these elements to be challenging to certain norms, and I hope that people enjoy that different take on photography. I am an ‘amateur’ who became pro, not through formal training but through sheer curiosity and passion alone. It is a great reward to be able to inspire other people to try the same.
In the near future I do want to develop my skills with bigger and better equipment, and use my style on other people more and more. My first goal is to get a sturdier tripod.
And now, the three photos, as selected and described by Miss Aniela:
This is one of my personal faves, and it’s one of those pictures that took the least time to shoot, though with a bit more intricacy to process. I had the idea of floating with my head in a box, and called in my boyfriend from playing his Xbox in the living room to propel my legs into the air during a few 10-second timer dashes. He went away again while I shot the other images that were to be used in the composite. I didn’t expect the image to come out so clean looking, as the hallway is quite dark and there were cumbersome walls round the edges of the image. It certainly got a lot of gasps and wows on Flickr, this being another ‘levitation’ picture, a series of which I have created partly inspired by the work I have seen of Julia Fullerton-Batten.
Ah, now, this pic is special to me. Not just because I generally like it, but because of what it proves to me as an artist – someone who is always getting frustrated about how to get a good pic. Other images I have taken have proved that it’s possible to get a good image straight-in-camera, there and then. However, this image did not come out of the camera like this – indeed, the original is nothing special, at least not to me. It’s the work I did to it, quite a minimal series of adjustments, that transformed an image of me on a hill, with the dog in the way, getting blown red-nosed straight into what I felt was photographic impotence; into what seems like a 50s film-still of someone not me, but a mysterious actress gazing wistfully out from between pleasing little distant tree stumps. Yet, the dark scowling eyes tell me that it is definitely me. So, this image proves that there are snaps one might overlook from their shoots, which with some special attention can be ‘unlocked’, if you like, revealing a whole new world, and causing undue artistic satisfaction and amazement. I joke about ‘trying to get a South by southeast’ when out taking new pics.
This is a clone picture taken in Milan. My boyfriend was the ‘human tripod’ here, holding the camera as still as humanly possible whilst I ran about in a public place, something with which I was not so confident – but there was only one man in the distance, so I got on with it. The first image we liked was the frontmost figure you see – she was a perfect haphazard shot, and all she needed was some perfunctory decoration in the form of a few accompanying clones. I didn’t share the final composite, strangely enough, until about 6 months later on Flickr. I wasn’t completely happy with the image until I made some tweaks to bring the characters closer together in harmony, and then, mid-cold-January, shared it online as a summery treat. It went down well, so I wondered why it had been stuck in the drawer for so long. Maybe it was tweaking those shadows that seemed like an endless job?
And now, (this is Trey again) I’ll post one of my favorite photoworks she has done: