Even though this site has been ignored since April (!) many of us have not forgotten our self portrait project. I have been creating self portraits throughout the year and when asked if I know of anyone working on a group project I thought it was high time for us to start My Reflective Lens again. Wouldn’t you agree?
I think Jennifer Capozzola summed it up in her bio (over on the about page) when she said “Self portraits are my way of accessing my own secrets, fears, joys, preoccupations. Pieces of me I wouldn’t usually share with the world but in ways that still feel safe since they are often abstractions.”
In my portraits, the challenge of recreating a situation, a euphemism, or a song is something I love. My mind keeps going back to an idea and when that idea has been executed, I will move to the next one plaguing me. These images are totally different from my other work. I have been a photographer for years, documenting people’s lives, creating a work of remembrance for them. This new body of work, my self portraits with all their oddity, is my inner remembrance. They speak more plainly of me, in their obscure and abstract way. They release the guilt or fear or shame that I often feel. I had no idea a photograph could double as therapy, and it may not, but it sure does help.
Our first group post is schedule to air on February 13th. In the mean time, the names and faces of our contributing artists can be found on our about page. There are 26 of us together on this journey. Many are very uncomfortable in front of the camera. Some will not post publicly, but my hope is that we all create something find some sort of release through our creations.
While you await our first post I would suggest you find and watch The Woodmans (I saw it on Netflix), a documentary of Francesca Woodman. Her work inspired my to push forward with self portraits. A video/slideshow of her work can be found here.
I hope you will join us, as our audience, on our journey of self discovery and self expression.