Shell Within Shell.

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I AM PAPER SERIES ©Reylia Slaby 2016

 

 

Today I was again caught in a whirlwind. A cruel, blustery tempest. These past few days have been full of me chasing after myself, but then running away from it as well. I fidget all day, carrying this anxious feeling within my chest, that threatens to choke me. It seems to say: When is it good enough? “It” being the art I produce, or rather, myself. I spend so much time fixated on it’s perfection in my mind, rather than production of the physical art itself. I am aware of this in myself, and it leaves me in even more suffering and guilt, stuck within a vicious circle. I tell myself that perhaps this is growth, but I find myself trapped within shell within shell, like a matryoshka doll.

Even as I type, I am fearful. Will even this be good enough? Where have I developed this abnormal fear of imperfection from? Perhaps it was something that naturally permeated and stained my being after being birthed and bred in the Japanese culture? A slow trickle of poison. Undetectable in small doses. Could that be the culprit?

Because when I was younger, I remember not fearing anything. I remember what it felt to be inspired by a piece of work rather than intimidated of or jealous of it.

Can I reclaim that sense of self? Hopefully I can find it again this year.

Always,

r.

http://www.reyliaslaby.com

Staring

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When I was a little girl, I loved to spend time staring at my own reflection. I remember that I did this quite often until around the age of twelve. Twelve was when I developed a nasty disease called insecurity, and looking at myself began to produce negative feelings. Prior to that, I was fascinated with looking at myself, and I did it often. I have old pictures that my parents took of myself staring in the mirror. I believe it was separate from any narcissism. All the feelings I remember having was just a simple curiosity and wonder of the body I was living in. I even remember inviting a friend to stare with me once, but he didn’t understand why I found looking into a mirror of any interest. I especially loved staring into my reflection from a car window during a nighttime drive. My face would be layered with the stars, the moon, and the sky, and I felt that in this way I was part of them. I believed that my dim reflection was not only the little me then, but me in the future. At eight years old I believed I knew what I looked like at twenty. I read it in the subtle lines of my face. I felt it as I studied myself breathe. I saw hints of my future in the depths of my eyes.

I’ve gotten a bit older, and at 22 I’ve found that this little habit has made it’s way back in my life a bit. A lot of insecurities regarding my physical appearance have been washed away, and now I find myself fascinated again with looking.

Always,

Reylia

Never Leave Me

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“Never Leave Me”
Photo: Reylia Slaby
Model: Dagny Tarver

Finally a new piece. I owe my “delay” to several things. One being that the shoots I’ve been desiring to have involve purchasing rather expensive things, and in that case I must wait, and one by one accumulate all that I need. The second is that this year, my focus has shifted. I see art now as the shadow of experience, and without embracing life, art can become meaningless. My prerogative now is to live.

But more about that later.

This shoot was so wonderful to do for me. Dagny was such a sport, and I can’t thank her enough for going through with it, despite the rain and the cold. She is truly a great model 🙂

As for the idea itself, it stems from my tendency to cling to the things that I love. I have felt this to the extent that it can be borderline obsessive. Despite my undying love for these things or people, I cannot make them stay. I have always known and been ok with this. When it comes to people in this equation, everyone has their own path, a stage entrance and exit. It is ok to let go, because that is the natural flow. Very few things stay.

But on the bright side, many things come back.

Always,

Reylia

Website || http://www.reyliaslaby.com/
Twitter || http://www.reyliaslaby.com/
Instagram || http://www.instagram.com/reylia.slaby
Blog || http://www.reyliaslaby.wordpress.com/

Near my home. Portrait with Kamiyu

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Today’s portrait with Kamiyu. It was the warmest day of the year, and I was feeling incredible. Summer, I am waiting for you!
This was taken near where I live. I don’t usually wander too far from home for shoots, although soon I will be heading somewhere totally new within the next couple of weeks,(Hopefully!) ! So very excited to get out, and to share my adventure.

Always,

Reylia


Website || http://www.reyliaslaby.com/
Twitter || http://www.reyliaslaby.com/
Instagram || http://www.instagram.com/reylia.slaby
Blog || http://www.reyliaslaby.wordpress.com/

Painting backgrounds / Shoot with Madison

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A portrait I did a week back, or so.
In the morning of the shoot, I decided to paint my own background. I had earlier purchased a black cotton backdrop for photo-shoots, but each time I attempted in using it, it has just been a hassle to work with. Since messing around with cloth has been frustrating, I wanted to buy something sturdy (Like plywood) and paint it. Both my sister Johnna and I needed to go to the Home Depot, but neither of us can drive, and we both had heavy purchases in mind. While scanning the shelves at the store, I knew we both couldn’t carry what we wanted back to our home. After thinking about it a little, I remembered that in our house, there was a door that was sitting in storage, and no one knew where it had come from. I decided to buy some paint, and to use the door as the canvas. So after a bit of paint splatters and toxic inhalation, it turned out to be a lovely background. I imagine I will be doing it this way again.

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Tada.

Always,

Reylia

Website || http://www.reyliaslaby.com/
Twitter || http://www.reyliaslaby.com/
Instagram || http://www.instagram.com/reylia.slaby
Blog || http://www.reyliaslaby.wordpress.com/

Sofina (And mini update)

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H
ey you awesome people! How has your week been going? Any adventures? 🙂

Wanted to share an old photo I took of my beautiful friend Sofina, with a re-edit, and wanted to give a little update on my week, and my upcoming trip to the States! I haven’t been this excited in a while. Just the idea of traveling has me dancing around the room.

I haven’t left Japan in about 2 years, so a trip has been long over-due. So far the plan is to travel to L.A and San Francisco, but so far a lot of the plans are up in the air. I’m just looking forward to whatever comes my way along this trip 🙂

Have a great coming Wednesday!

Always,

Reylia