What was the inspiration behind this shoot?
Well, Dan and I had talked about shooting something creative for a while. Our relationship has grown over the years and is really special to me. It’s not often you bond with photographers in the way I have been able to with Dan, so I was excited to show him the place I grew up and had been staying for the summer. There’s something about being able to use your environment to evoke your mood. I sort of knew that was going to come naturally knowing how I feel about being in my natural habitat. I grew up running around barefoot on a very small street with around 20 homes. I had a very freeing summer, when I wasn’t feeling so depressed. So, I really wanted to allow myself that feeling during this shoot. I’d say it came through pretty naturally.
What was it like shooting Clare in her hometown?
It felt intimate. We're already good friends beyond the model/photographer relationship, so getting to spend some time in the backyard of her childhood was special. It also felt restful, a break from the oftentimes frenetic energy of the city. I'm not gonna say that one or the other is better or worse, but shooting upstate, I could breathe different.. maybe more nakedly so. With no one's gaze upon us, nor city walls towering over us, it felt free to roam and create more wildly.
How did it feel while you were shooting, and then afterwards seeing the final images?
I remember not worrying so much about what I looked like or what I was wearing. I knew we’d be in the woods getting dirty so no matter. I didn’t expect to get so sticky though, and I ended up being covered in fruit juice from the get go. We started in a field of wheatgrass on a reservation with the apples we bought from the orchard. I’m very inspired by the 70’s, hence my halter top and corduroy shorts. I’ve always had a rebellious side to me although I do value and respect tradition; I’m someone who rarely wears a bra and goes to the market with pajamas. Looking at the final images I feel a sense of serenity and belonging. I’m not always able to sit still, especially living in the city. So these images are a nice reminder of how valuable those feelings are.
How would you describe Clare as model/talent/creative?
Clare's been working on a lot. From acting, to voice lessons, to doing the inner work of growing and healing from life's curveballs. I think all of that has made her into someone who's become even more attuned to herself, and who can draw creative expression from that well of deep introspective exploration within. From this shoot and her other recent work, I’d say she’s been rather fiery, but measured– channeling a lot of spicy energy that reflects a relentless drive to create from within.
How would you describe Dan as a photographer?
Dan cares a lot about people which makes him a really unique photographer. He cares more about the movement and feeling of the person he’s shooting. He also lives in a really creative mind, so he comes up with ideas on the spot that just make sense. As a model it’s really helpful to shoot with someone like that. I’ve shot with Dan numerous times now and each time I see the final images, I see a side of me I didn’t know was there.I think that’s what looking at an image is all about. Especially when humans are involved. Shouldn’t they be feeling something to be remembered? Something can mean many things. In this case, the “something” was the relationship between me and nature. I feel really grateful I got to work with Dan on this shoot and I hope someone can relate and enjoy these images.
What was it like collaborating with each other on this shoot?
It’s always fun to create with homies. For me, finding sustainability in what I do is really important and building relationships that are mutually empowering is a big part of that. Working with Clare is great because we’ve gotten to spend so much time together outside of work, and because of that we know each others’ stories, we know what the other person is passionate about, what they’re working on, what they’ve been through, etc. Knowing each others’ stories helps us to draw more out of each other when we create cause we know what’s deep in the other person. Oftentimes collabs are just one-offs, but on rare occasions when there’s both connection and consistency, not just beautiful, but relatable work can result.
Ripe It Off