We don’t often feature selfies in this series, but then selfies don’t usually achieve the quality found in the work of internationally exhibited art photographer Shelbie Dimond, who’s based in Los Angeles and Bogota. In fact, self-photography was, quite literally, her salvation.
She was brought up in a strict religious community in the Mid-West; she now frankly calls it a cult. The discovery of her father’s camera when she was a teenager helped her find a new way of engaging with her life, and she really began to find her own personality and voice when she took this picture of herself and her cat:
And her mature work continues to explore what she calls ‘the power of self-portraiture and the female form’.
And here she is on the right, at work with some other models:
What you probably can’t tell from that picture is that Shelbie Dimond is not a digital photographer: she creates silver nitrate prints in the traditional way, shot with analog equipment on physical film, often expired to give the pictures a faded, vintage look with random fogging. The objective is to evoke what she calls ‘a potent nostalgia’, enhanced by the use of period costume, frequently 1950s lingerie.
And many of these themes come together in the splendid photograph that is at the center of our attention: a picture of herself being spanked, taken with an old-fashioned polaroid camera.
If you are interested in Shelbie Dimond’s work, please visit her website.