In a world where owning a camera and taking a few pictures makes anyone feel entitled to be called a photographer, there are few photographers in the Caribbean who can truly be called digital artists.
Alyson Holder from Barbados is one such individual. She recently exhibited some of her work at the Art Splash Gallery in Hastings, which was featured on the We Bajans series.
Check out the video below to find out more about the exhibition, entitled The Closet of Daydreams:
CFstyle followed up with a few questions of our own…
You say you enjoy photographing people due to their unpredictability. Is there any preference to shoot men, women or children?
People are indeed my favourite subject. I am now adding more males to my portfolio as I go along, but I think the reason I’ve worked with female models so much is because I identify with their femininity which makes it easier to translate the ideas in my head. I can pinpoint certain characteristics, moods or gestures with women. Males are foreign to me in that respect, but I’ve begun studying them more. Children are fun, but they are a lot of work! I much prefer catching children with the lens candidly.
Where does the inspiration come from? Do you already have a final result in mind when planning a shoot or do you allow the concept to grow during the process?
My inspiration comes from any and everything; even being in the grocery store inspires me! I don’t reject any idea because I’ve realized that second-guessing myself will lead me nowhere. I don’t put a timeline on building a concept either. I will usually play around with an idea until I am excited about it and that’s when I know I’m ready to shoot. Things don’t always go as planned, so I try not to be too rigid about the end result I might have in mind; sometimes a material or prop doesn’t work the way I had envisioned or a light decides not to work on the shooting day; sometimes I see something I hadn’t previously considered. I like to keep my eyes open for new takes on things.
What are your interests outside of photography that influence the way you photograph now?
I love music, books and media. I did modeling and theatre work for a few years [indeed, the Editor met Alyson as a model at the Islands of the World Fashion Week in the Bahamas in 2008], so fashion and drama are big influences for me. I do also find myself wandering around in cyberspace looking for interesting things.
Here is one of Alyson’s pieces from her exhibition entitled ‘Mama Dlo’, based on a Trinidadian folklore character:
Alyson Holder’s work can be seen further at the 3rd Eye Photography Fan Page on Facebook