Kristin and Maya #1
Kristin and Maya #2
Josh and Maddy #1
Josh and Maddy #2
Chris and Kyleigh
Chris, Kyleigh, and Corie
Ryan and Liz #1
Ryan and Liz #2
Sarah and Tasha #1
Sarah and Tasha #2
The concept for this project came about while evaluating the closest relationships in my life, and how the most important ones involve (or have previously involved) distance and require much patience.
While this project is not about distance, I realized in thinking about reunions that touches and hugs become a hugely important interaction. Ideally, I would have liked to work with people who have been separated, but since that was not an option due to time, I chose to focus more on the aspect of how important a touch can be. I also originally intended to photograph people who had a variety of relationships to one another, but as it stands, most of my models were couples, so I ended up consciously selecting that as another theme for the series.
Because the project is about natural body movement and touch, I wanted my models to be as comfortable as possible. In order for this to happen, I allowed the couples to choose what they wore and where we shot. This created much more of a challenge for me than it did for them, but I was more readily able to get true interactions and facial expression this way. I was also able to point out to my models different ways they respond to one another or different ways of touching they have that they had not noticed before.
Due to the relaxed nature of the project, the portraits have a sort of snapshot feel, which was necessary in order to keep everything natural. When I attempted to ask them to pose for the shot, they immediately froze up. So with the first part of my diptychs, I just wanted to see what I would get. Working under this technique then allowed me to more carefully plan the second part of the diptych. By watching them interact for a few minutes, I was able to see what sort of touches (hand-holding, high-fiving, legs tangled) kept repeating. For these I was better able to ask them to pose since it was a close up of a movement.
This project was certainly a journey of discovery for myself and the couples, and as with most of my work, I would like to revisit it. I will never cease to be fascinated by the physical interactions of people, especially those who love one another.