The image to your right is entirely fake; I made it. When I was in grad school, I made a series of work that recreated moments before an individual committed suicide. I hired the model, set up the scene, photographed, and edited the image to look real; the gun came from a royalty-free website. I based the series on my biological father's suicide. I never fully understood why he did that, and this series was a way for me to talk about it. This idea is incredibly uncomfortable to bring up in conversation, so that is why I made the images challenging to observe.
A few years later.
I got called into court as an expert witness. You see, the model in the image was going through a custody battle, and the court called me in to take the oath and testify. I had to explain to the judge and jury on how and why I made the image. Long story short, I posted this image up on Facebook, and people assumed it was real. I consider it a compliment. I edited four images together so seamlessly that I had to go into court and convince people that I made this image.
This series captures subjects whose identity has been removed, forcing the viewer to project their thoughts of who they think belongs in the image. This is constructed by seamlessly editing several digital photographs together to make the portrait appear invisible, hence the series' name, 'NoBodies.' There is literally nobody in the image, and to the viewer, the subject of the photograph bears no identity.
The Surrealist Manifesto defined Surrealism as a way to express the real process of thought. Forgetting about the difference between dreams and reality and focusing on the freedom of the imagination. Out of experimentation, this series came into existence. I photographed several models and twisted, changed, and morphed their forms into absurd and abstract shapes. By creating this series, I want to start a conversation about human existence that is beyond the surface and resides within the mind.
Usually, when I create new work, it turns into a series. However, some ideas work best alone. One day in grad school, I was smoking a cigarette looking at the back entrance to the studio. While I was smoking, I was looking at the security camera, thinking about how cameras never blink. Then like magic, this image appeared in my head. Other than the fact that it looks exactly how I pictured it, I do enjoy the dichotomy of the two cameras. It's a staring contest.