Woman in the train

Day 4

What was your life like?


The Face For Others

Being born and raised in Japan, I often find that there are certain characteristics that I have naturally acquired, yet have no idea how, or when. One is what we call “Tatemae”. A hideous word to me, meaning the face you put up in front of others. Socially speaking, it is a natural and almost necessary tool to survive. Culturally you aren’t supposed to stand out too much, a constant and never ending play that you are supposed to follow. I grew up fairly segregated from Japanese society, and yet I found that this concept of Tatame has naturally infiltrated my personality. When meeting someone new, you must have a different face, must talk in a specific and decided way. Naturally of course, most countries have varying degrees of this, as it’s not a completely foreign concept. And yet, Japan has found a special place for this word, and it is threaded into the spirit of the people. So for someone like me, who looks nothing like the masses, is quite an overbearing task navigating the social scene in a way that is understood. My task is to unthread it, and to see what remains. Who was I before all of this started? Hopefully 2019 will show me.



Reylia Slaby

Fine Art & Fashion Photography

Website | http://www.reyliaslaby.com

Day 15 | Self Portrait While Waiting

I am overwhelmed by the amount of conflicting options and ways to work and live, as well as love. The dire importance of moving in your own way and learning to navigate as your own individual has been a topic of great urgency for me. Urgent, solely because I feel strangled by my socially influenced brain that tells me that I need to do X, say Y, and be Z. Just so you can live in this world and not starve or be deemed as a particular type of person, and then ostracized. Is it possible to be yourself, and still be ok in this world?