@ello x @scene360 :
“Aunt Singe” is the artistic persona created by our interviewee. She wants to give women—and herself—the ability to freely express themselves during photo sessions.
Sometimes this creative freedom takes the form of eroticism, sometimes darkness, and sometimes just the bizarre. Her photography switches between self-portraits and shoots with models, all of which address the themes of nudity, fetishes, and masks and wigs. Aunt Singe pulls inspiration from vintage TV shows, old editions of Playboy, and Shakespeare, just to name a few. Read on to learn more about the artist behind the camera.
Tell us a little bit about how you got interested in photography.
I honestly fell in love with fashion photography. I would buy magazines with those big fashion editorials—like Vogue—and skip all the articles to view the photo story. I loved it. I’ve never been big into fashion per se, but I adored the scenery and mood those images would create. It was like creating a movie—but with images. Now, of course, I have grown and I adore a different side and style of photography. But fashion is where it started.
Your work has a very analog, natural feel. Do you shoot digitally or with film?
I shoot digitally, but I try to invoke the analog feel. If I had unlimited funds, I would shoot analog and get rid of my digital. One of the drawers in my refrigerator is dedicated to expired film. I hope to use it more often. I’m just a little nervous about processing my own film, and I am too impatient to get it developed elsewhere.
What do you do to stay creatively motivated?
That’s wicked easy: I am constantly inspired. I almost always have something on in the background throughout the day. I work from my home for my actual day job, so having the TV on or playing an audio book is quite easy. Lately I’ve been re-watching “The Addams Family” (the original TV show), the old “Dark Shadows” TV show (it’s beautifully horrible, and I just discovered it), and romantic movies—lately Shakespeare (“Romeo & Juliet” and “Shakespeare in Love”).
Your subject matter is pretty scintillating, but it isn’t just “sexy.” Tell us a little bit about the messages or emotions you try to evoke with your work.
I created the idea/identity of “Aunt Singe” as a way for women to completely express themselves, including myself. I wanted to be able to be weird, psychotic, or inadvertently sexual without my identity being known. In everyday real life, I’m blonde, bubbly, and a space cadet. I think the outside world would see me as wicked “vanilla.” I am not only bubbly, silly, and fun … but also dark, strange, and I fucking love sex. I put on my bob wigs and feel like I can express that side without being shunned or judged. I have a hard time being both sides of myself in real life. Aunt Singe is an outlet for that. I think other girls feel the same way, and I have started to work with really talented and beautiful women because of it. Some share the same issues I do. For example, I have major anxiety. It’s been a huge part of my life and identity. I think some models have come forward loving the expression I evoke in some of my images. They may also suffer from a mental disorder and want a healthy way to express it.
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