“Skin” was shot in the spring of 2015 during a Magnum workshop that I did with Antoine D’agata. This project is by no means my favorite project; in fact, I am still quite shy about sharing the project and to put it out there makes me feel incredibly vulnerable. And that is precisely why I insist on keeping this project public on my site. This is a project that I need to come back to again and again.
“Skin” was a pivot point in my photographic practice. Through this project I started to think more deeply about how I manifest myself in my photography, either intentionally or unintentionally, as well as being the first time I really looked at myself through the photographic lens. The project gained a kind of eroticism as I shot it, in part because this was a very intimidating project for me to shoot. To be vulnerable, was to be naked in front of the camera and to give my camera away and welcome being seen. I felt like I was ripping myself open to my own dismay and trying to photograph what came out. In many ways I was becoming a more mature photographer and a more open woman. The process was messy, stressful and imperfect, but profoundly changed how I photographed and approached projects. Though this project is imperfect, it made me a better photographer. This project is a story of how I learned to start looking at myself.
I want to participate in the Erotic Eye workshop for three reasons, the first being that I want to continue this process of looking inward and battling what I find. I am terrified at the prospect of having to look at myself again and come to love not only my body, but also my own vulnerability through the lens of sexuality (something which has been incredibly difficult for me in the past). I also want to participate because I feel that it will help me considerably with an upcoming project. While in Japan I was introduced to the BDSM scene and was struck by how affectionate the scene was and how open and loving all of its participants seemed to be towards each other. As a result I became interested in eroticism as a form of artistic love and a way to connect with people in our ever interwoven, yet disconnected world. Lastly, I am in an incredibly vulnerable place as a photographer at this moment. I recently watched one of my subjects, whom I was very close to, die and I want to continue working through this photographically on a personal level. Never before in my photographic practice have I been at such an open and vulnerable place. I do not want to miss this opportunity to grow. In many ways, I very much need at this moment to work through the profound change that is happening in my life at this exact moment.