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Freedom | The making of

Freedom is a special photographic series. I created it in the midst of the quarantine. It was about half way through this odd time when I felt my creative flow was just too good to let it go to waste. Saoirse McConnell, one of my oldest friends, was spending the quarantine with us, as my home is in the countryside and away from all the tension you could feel 24/7 in town.

Spring was at it's peak and the countryside was absolutely beautiful. The colors were unbelievable. And the different types of flowers was just overwhelming. I knew I had to take advantage of this mindblowing setting.

So with this said, I asked Saoirse if she would be my model and I asked Lucia, my sister, if she would help out with make up and wardrobe. I wanted to change the entire look and colors of the model depending on the flower we chose for the photograph. Depending on the kind of flower and it's color, it was also going to represent one emotion or another. So there was a lot of preparation to be done.

The first thing we had to do it is go out with our basket and find the different flowers we wanted to use in our photographs.

Once we had the flowers we had to pick and choose the make up and wardrobe depending on the feel we wanted.

The first photograph we took was Purple. For this image I wanted blue-purple flowers, and I wanted a very soft light. We got up at 6.30 am and headed out.

For this picture I wanted softness. For this reason we kept the wardrobe very simple, trying to make it look like she wasn't wearing anything at all. I wanted to make it look like she was at one with nature, that it was completely normal to find her picking flowers and putting them in her hair at 7 in the morning.

We rushed to our second location to get the second photograph, Red. There is an amazing bush with really curious red flowers that has a very majestic feeling to it. This is where we wanted the second picture. Here we wanted the complete opposite feel to the one before. The feeling of power and authourity.

The thrid photograph we took was White. The sun was now getting up in the sky, but that didn't really matter for this photograph. With white I wanted to introduce youth and innocence to the series. But I didn't want to make the whole thing white, I wanted a bit of contrast. To get this contrast, we took the photograph inside a huge carob tree.

This picture is the first where the flowers don't have such a main role in the photograph, they're more subtly introduced.

We then took a break and carried on around 5 pm, once the light wasn't so harsh as it is the middle of the day, but it was still bright. We needed this kind of light for Yellow. These photographs we wanted to just be pure happiness.

We decided to go for a country look. We got a bit baggy jumper and wellies, went out to the yellow covered field and started being silly.

As the sun started to go down, we lay saoirse down, spread her hair about and emptied our flower-filled basket with all the flowers we'd been collecting throughout the day.

This image we wanted to represent the connection human can have with nature if we just gave nature a chance. The harmony than can exist between us and our Earth. And for this, we obviously didn't need to choose one color.

The last photograph we took was at night. This one was the most experimental. Once again, we took all the flowers and headed for the house. We filled up the bath, but some bubbles in, put some milk in the water to make it a bit less see-through and got Saoirse in there.

The reason that the series is called Freedom is multilayered:

  • On one hand, Saoirse is the Irish word for freedom, liberty. Therefore in a way, it's a tribute to my amazing model and friend.

  • On a deeper level, it's a contrast to everything that was going on at the time I created the series. Beeing in quarantine made us feel like we were closed in, in cages, forbidden to leave. But this wasn't all there was to it. That's what we come across at a glance. We will always have our freedom, it just depends how you look at it.

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