So, here I am. Committed.
As the project started out, my focus was on the editing. In a former life I was a graphic designer for a small art gallery in London. I sat in front of Photoshop and Illustrator every day, for eight hours a day. This killed any and all love I had for the programs, and I was determined to regain it.
I watched countless Lynda.com, Phlern, and CreativeLive videos every day and attempted to utilize one new technique a day, and this after a full day of work. It was all very exhausting. I soon found that creating mini themes for a week at a time really aided the process. The first few days had a very weak theme of “movies,” sort of - I needed to be more refined in these if they were to a) be recognizable as stand alone series, and b) actually make the whole thing less taxing.
Looking back now, two theme weeks really stand out for me. 1990s television characters and Captain Planet - pretty obvious to which generation I belong, no?
The latter was more abstract. I thought about Water, Earth, Wind, Fire, Heart, and of course the main antagonist, Pollution, and asked myself how could these be editorial? I am by no means anywhere near a skilled editorial photographer or creative director, but I wanted to put those hats on and see what I could come up with in my 250 square foot New York apartment. It became abundantly clear that it wouldn’t be an easy brief. I had only an old accountant’s lamp and a small ring flash, but I’d have to *Tim Gunn voice* make it work.
Those six images are still to this day the one’s I am most proud of. They took the most out of me, but gave back so much more. Every image subsequently had some semblance of one of these five in it - technique-wise. The whole project could have been a wash, but by walking away with the gained knowledge and confidence from this series, I would be content with a year spent.
But, what about the former I listed above? The 1990s TV? Well, tbh, that was so self serving it would disgust you. Have I always dreamed of being Clarissa, Judy Funnie, or Debbie Thornberry? I mean, they’re only 80% of why my personality and style is the way it is today. With this series, after the first day, I decided it would be fun to personify these characters as they would be on school photo day. I used a lime green yoga mat as my backdrop, and the same two sub-par lights. That amateur set-up worked so well that it made a cameo in many other days until I moved and left both the mat and lamp behind.
Said move was a radical change. I wasn’t relocating to a new apartment in my neighbourhood. I was transitioning into a new chapter. You see, my husband and I finally found a way to break the binds of the 9-5 grind. We earned ourselves some online jobs which would allow us to make the necessary living funds from anywhere with a solid Internet connection. We had already planned on at least a year of true nomadism, but now we could do it without giving anything up prior. We decided a good way to begin the new lifestyle was a shock to the system, and found a winter rental in a small beach town on Cape Cod. There we would be able to detox and save before heading off abroad.
Consequentially, this lifestyle change greatly affected the focus of my project, which I will discuss in the third and final post.
To see all the photos in the series, click here.