I love making these images, mainly because I work differently in this space than when making portraits of other people. It is a collaborative process when I work with my sitters to create a portrait. We banter as I move them around, speaking while photographing. For the self-portraits, it doesn’t work to simply choose an environment and set up the tripod. I need to think and plan the shoot for a while – sometimes a couple weeks or so, where an idea comes to mind, often from a dream, and I let it percolate. The final step before shooting is planning how best to illustrate the story in my mind.
As the pandemic, the toxic political and social climate, and general quality of life presented a troublesome reality, I continued to make these photographs into 2021 and 2022. Anxiety about aging and isolation remain, albeit with some hope for the future mixed in.