Jasper and Shelly

Photo collection > Sebastian Matthew > New York

Attempting to find bliss in the geometry of light.

When I first began to work with photography, what appealed to me was the idea of preservation, and that somehow by taking pictures I was creating an archive or narrative for my life.

Last semester for my color film Class at ICP, my final project was narrowing in on the idea of bliss. The portraits I took were all candids of my friends and family laughing hysterically with a harsh flash illuminating their faces. These personal and “in your face” images were lots of fun to make, but at the same time, it didn’t feel like I was making anything. I began to crave control over my images because it felt like I had none. I felt far too safe creating documentary work and wanted to practice photography while employing a different set of techniques and using a different process to really plan out my images before I even take them.

Recently, I’ve been experimenting with the geometry of light, letting severe daylight create a bold contrast with the shadows, and using the light to frame my subjects in a way that compliments both the subject and the scenery.

This shoot with my friends Jasper and Shelly was one of the first times I truly felt like I had fully creative control and now that I can understand what that feels like I’m suddenly now able to do things with my work that I wasn’t able to before.