Age? Location? Website?
37, Los Angeles, www.stephaniediani.com
Tell us a little bit about your work.
I like images that are beautiful, but slightly off, even slightly off-putting. Both of the series that I submitted are meant to be beautiful images of things that can be difficult to look at; they're meant to tweak the viewer a bit, make them laugh at the ridiculousness or cross their arms in disapproval. If I can get a reaction out of an audience, whether negative or positive, I feel like I've at least made a tiny ripple in my little corner of the cosmos... I guess the less sophisticated response would be that I like to reach out yank, just a little bit, on peoples' chains.
Sally Mann's images of decomposing bodies in Tennessee, Diane Arbus' work and some of Joel-Peter Witkin's compositions. I started off my photography career studying portraiture in Cartier-Bresson and Dorothea Lange monographs that I checked out of the local library. Strong coffee, good wine, photo books, Poe, Kafka, Richard Ford, Mary McCarthy, JD Salinger, Seinfeld.
Describe your process for creating a new piece.
I'll get an itch about something--fashion, plastic surgery, age, marriage, death--and then try to figure out how I can photograph that abstract concept in a way that would be compelling for me to execute, would allow me to express a feeling about the topic, and would be interesting for other people to look at. One of the series I'd like to do next has to do with marriage. Yes I'm married. I'm pretty sure the series will not have a happy ending. I'm pretty sure my marriage will.
The process for the meat/fashion was going to a carniceria or grocery store and staring at the meat, then buying what I thought had the potential to be beautiful and sewing it together over the kitchen sink to make some sort of clothing. I went through a lot of paper towels and cleanser... I also love to just go outside and wander around with a camera and shoot whatever makes me laugh, or stop and look, or feel sad or wistful.
Luckily for me, freelance photographer-- for newspapers, magazines and productions. So far the assignments have been a little tamer than 'Offal Taste' and the 'women and body image' series, but I have high hopes!
Best thing that happened to you this week?
I booked two days out of town with a friend for next week. I'm desperately in need of some mental regrouping.
Tools of the trade?
Professional: Canon Mark 2, 1ds, Hasselblad H2. Personal: hasselblad, lomo, Mamiya 7 all with film. And Hasselbad H2 or equivalent.
I'm working on two more series for my website (one mentioned above), and looking to scare up more commercial/editorial jobs. I'm also planning on continuing and expanding both the raw meat series and the body image series, the latter possibly for a book.
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