Nymphs Who Haunt The Pleasant Woods

I’ve been meditating a lot on the topic of sex this year and how I fit into other people’s pre-conceived ideas of sex. I’m fixated by the space between seeing a woman as a sexual object and as a life partner. The madonna and the prostitute. Decadence versus morality. In truth, I was just really sick of boys who were only interested in me if I could give them something physical.

After returning back to Australia from Europe last year, I became fascinated by Aphrodite. I saw her image everywhere, cast in stone, wood, gold, on earrings and vases. I was transfixed with her beauty and sexual power and, as I discovered upon more research, her strength in allowing others to see her only in the way she wanted to be seen.

I took these photographs back in March with a slightly different, yet similar end result in mind. I struggled after I finished the shoot because I was going through a difficult time with work and stress and as a result, my mental health was flailing behind. I filed them away and almost deleted them about 5 times. I didn’t feel as though I nailed my intentions. I was fixated on the beauty aspect.

It wasn’t until I went to the countryside this past weekend, and stared far too long as the rear end of a male statue in the gardens of a castle, that a question arose in my mind. Why can I look at this statue and feel nothing sexual towards it. What makes it a subject, rather than an object?

With that in mind, I looked at these images once again with renewed inspiration. Focusing on form, composition and flow above everything else I finally reached fulfilment.

A subject, not an object.

Shot on Canon 5Dmk3 with FL 85mm 1.8 lens.