Welcome to the next installation in our continuing series called “3 of Me,” where we ask one of our favorite self-portrait artists to share 3 of their self-portraits while answering 3 questions. Today, I am pleased to introduce you to an Instagram contact of mine, Veronica Moloney (aka. bythetwilight) whose mobile artistry holds an exquisite delicacy that both fascinates and inspires me. A visit into her ethereal world, with her use of natural elements juxtaposed with emotive poses and expressions, evokes a visceral reaction. I hope you are as intrigued by Veronica’s thought-provoking self-portraits as I am.
1. How long have you been taking self-portraits and what draws you to use yourself as the subject so often?
Well I definitely had to research this question because, I didn’t recall when I first got the nerve to shoot self-portraits. It’s been since the fall of 2010, which is when I lost my job with no immediate prospects of employment. I decided to do some self exploration thru photography. I stumbled onto a few self-portrait groups on Flickr and decided to be brave. I think a lot of people are interested in shooting themselves, but are a bit nervous about doing it, since on the surface it can seem quite narcissistic. Today, however, it has become a well-respected art form, and I’ve really found it to be a huge confidence builder. Now it just feels natural for me to create art and express something that can trigger emotions in people.
2. Nature displays heavily in your self-portraits. What is it about the natural world that has you featuring its elements over and over? You are also a lover of film. How does that find it’s way into your mobile artistry? Are the two related at all?
I grew up on a farm with lots of freedom to roam and discover. I am also pursuing a degree as an herbalist, so I think the natural elements are a big part of my life. Film photography is something that I remember as a young girl, and most of my parent’s family photos are all on Polaroids. I remember seeing a polaroid several years ago on Hula Seventy’s blog, and I fell in love all over again with instant film. It definitely has influenced my mobile art. Most of my final edits have somewhat soft outlines and pale tones to them. Lo-Mob is one of my favorite phone apps in addition to VSCO and Hipstamatic which all mimic vintage photography. It’s really just based on my personal connections to nature. I love blending the human element with nature elements.
3. What inspires you? Your mobile self-portraits are multi-layered both technically and psychologically. How does your personal inspiration play out in your work?
I find inspiration from many different areas. Much of my inspiration comes from vintage film photographers, so I have found a way to bring together my love of instant film and mobile art. I love Sally Mann’s portraits of faces and young girls. Her art was raw and held so much honesty. Lori Vrba’s art is feminine and ethereal and deeply personal. Artists like these ladies have influenced me heavily. I am happiest creating a photo that holds high emotion for people.
Personally, I don’t feel my work to be highly technical. They are actually quite simple, but yes, multi-layered. Quite frequently, I will have a photo that I get “stuck” on for several days before completing an edit. Not because of any level of high technical skills, but simply because it doesn’t feel “done.” I recently decided to shoot photos in a series that all are part of a continuing story. The project is called”Emotion Explored” and is a creation of emotion thru photos. I also have recently finished a series called “The Midnight Garden” which is a dark elusive bedtime story of dreams and memories. I feel that doing a series has given me more direction and lends more insight into my work as an artist.
I’ve always said when asked, that I approach my photos like a journal of my thoughts and feelings which I share with the world. I think I get to enjoy the best of both worlds shooting both film and mobile photography. Film photography is what I consider my hobby while mobile art is a complete personal passion. Many people believed neither of these art forms would have lasting power, and yet they are still here. It’s such a great time to be an artist and amongst these communities. Everything has its own interesting beginnings, and Mortal Muses was the first photography community that I stumbled on 4 years ago.
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Veronica, I am delighted that you found us four years ago and even more excited that I get to share your work with our readers today! And now it’s my turn to share three of my favorites from your gallery of beautiful self-portraits. It was beyond tough to choose as I’m a huge fan of everything that you do! As you can see, my love of the natural elements in your work won out. These are beyond beautiful and simply stunning!
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Veronica Moloney is a self-portrait artist who embarked on her journey into mobile photography three years ago with the purchase of Hipstamatic, which also happens to be the first app she ever used. Earlier this year, she participated in the Mobile Photo Awards for the first time earning two honorable mentions for self-portraiture, and an honorable mention for visual effects. Her work has also been featured on We Are Juxt. You can find more of Veronica’s self-portraits under the same “bythetwilight” on iphoneart and instagram. To see some of Veronica’s polaroids, check out her work on flickr.
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If you would like to be considered for a “3 of Me” feature, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us here.
Until next time!