creating vulnerable fine art

How Jena Malone and Brooke Shaden taught me to strip my life down and be free.

Red Rocks Nevada Photography Art.jpg

   A few months ago I picked up the oversized As If magazine with Jena Malone on the cover. The photograph was extremely intriguing. That was the only reason why I really cared. Sure… Jena's character on the Hunger Games was kinda interesting, but not enough for me to really want to learn about her as a person.
   And then I read her interview.
   And then I was wrong.
   In it she talked about how horrible Hollywood can be and sometimes you just need to take your top off.
   I thought to myself… isn’t that kind of a typical Hollywood answer though? Let’s all just get naked!
   Then I kept reading.
   She herself was interested in photography, nature, exploring… actually being a very intriguing character herself. And then it got me thinking.
   What would it be like to roll around in the dirt naked? Or take a walk outside, naked.
   Because you’re presently all living in 2016 and the world is totally corrupt and overly sexualizes everything, I can see how you might think, as I did, that this is a bit much. Then I thought about it more as an instinctual thing, more caveman like, more natural, and then I realized. I got her point. Sometimes you just have to strip it all away away and be simple.

   Fast forward a few months after that when I attended WPPI in Las Vegas. Sin City. Ironic? I think not.
   I took a class with the amazing and inspirational Brooke Shaden. The class was on making vulnerable art.
   Now, we learned a lot in the class, but the main point was- what is it in your life or at that moment that makes you feel vulnerable? Embrace that, show that, share that, and you may just get someone in return opening up and living vulnerably.

   Vulnerable is defined as: susceptible to physical or emotional attack or harm.

   How many times do we open our selves up for attack?
   I’ve always been a pretty honest and open person, especially with my art, so I feel like I may actually do it more than most. Not because I want to be attacked but because I have a NEED to express myself. And because my mom always taught me to be proud of who I am and take nothing from anyone, vulnerability wasn’t always a bad thing.
   But… I did realize there’s one thing that makes me vulnerable both emotionally and physically and that’s nudity.
   Clothes physically protect us from harm. Clothes emotionally protect us from harm. Yet I find myself, when wanting to make RAW art , that clothes get in the way. They cover us up and give us a completely different view of people.
   Think about it- don’t we judge people on their clothes and hair right away? Not in a bad way, it’s just a way that allows us to communicate to the world who we are. Imagine if clothes were gone and all I had to judge YOU on was… you. ONLY who you are in your own skin. Pure emotion and truth.
   Feeling vulnerable yet? Yeah… I am.

   So… My husband and I rented a car, drove miles and miles in to the deserted mountains of Nevada, and I became vulnerable and free.

Mountains of Red Rock Nevada Photography.jpg

   Envisioned and Edited by me. Shot and perfected by my husband.

View all my Self Portraits

If you like this one check out my self Portrait Shedding Layers & The Revolution

Check out this short video of us behind the scenes on our adventure!