Shell Within Shell.

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.



My work for Adobe Photoshop! 25 under 25!


Hi everyone! I have some exciting news to share!
皆さんこんにちは! お知らせしたい嬉しいニュースがあります!


This year marks Adobe Photoshop’s 25th anniversary, and in honor of it, the Adobe team has been searching the globe, looking for 25 artists under the age of 25 to create a piece in celebration of it. Among them are digital artists , photographers and even typographers. I’m super excited and honored to say that I’m one of the 25, and this is the piece I created for them.

To read more about adobes 25 Under 25 project, please check out the links below!…/photoshop/25-year-anniversary.html…/25-under-25-the-search-is-on-for-2…

A HUGE thank you to the Adobe team, for all their support and advice, and a big congratulations to the other 24 selected! You guys earned it!

I’m also taking over adobes Instagram for about two weeks! Would be so wonderful if you could follow, like, and comment on there! Link below!

Also thanks so much to all my incredible friends, family, and viewers for their support and encouragement! You truly are my rock. And a shout-out to the model, Dagny! You were so amazing on the shoot! I can never thank you enough.

Here’s to 25 years of creativity!


Reylia :))



詳細は下記のリンクでご覧になれますので是非チェックしてみてください!…/p…/photoshop/25-year-anniversary.html…/25-under-25-the-search-is-on-for-2… (EN)








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Near my home. Portrait with Kamiyu


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.



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Dairy #3 Growing



Yesterday I gave three presentations on photography. I will be sharing about that interesting experience in more detail later, but one thing that I touched briefly was my very first conceptual shoot. The anniversary for when I started conceptual photography is coming up, and I wanted to look back and see how I changed and grew. It is quite amazing at how different my life is now, even after a year. The way I think, how I present myself, the things I value, how I view art, are all different. Things have changed incredibly.

Right now, though, I am feeling so grateful for all the amazing experiences I’ve had being a photographer. There are so many people I wouldn’t have met, and hundreds of places I wouldn’t have gone to otherwise.

It also reveals in me the things I need to change. It is like looking into a mirror. It gives me a chance to look at myself and it challenges me to be honest. Through that, there is growth.

Yesterday I asked the students, “How do you grow?” Sometimes it can feel like you reached a plateau, and that growth is a thing of the past. It can be difficult to keep trudging on when it feels like your body is filled with cement.

I believe, though, that the relentless and shameless creation of art will solve that problem.




On “Persistent Winters”


She made her way slowly and deliberately from her dilapidated home to the garden. The house that was built for her no longer gave her protection, but she continued to live there. This place was where all her memories thrived, and she couldn’t give that up for comfort or sanctuary from the chill of winter. But alas! She never knew that her winter would never end, because the very act of residing in that home, haunted by the past, was what caused the winter in her life.

She shivered under her breath, but only from habit now, because no matter where she was, she was cold. As she walked, the snow under her feet crunched underfoot, leaving a melancholy and winding trail stretching behind her.

She was thirsty, so she came to her garden. In this place, the snow collected and melted into the stone bowl, and that is where she quenched her thirst.

She dipped her hands slowly into the near-frozen waters. Her hands shaking until the moment the waters touched her lips. In that moment, she was whole again.

Until tomorrow, there would always be tomorrow.


This picture is a perfect representation of how conceptual photography was like for me in the winter. Stiffly moving through the cold, trying to get something, anything, to quench the thirst I had.  We had this shoot at an old abandoned house, so it was great fun for me imagining the type of people that lived there generations before.

I think that something that this shoot taught me was that you need to explore. If you are an artist, that is a definite must. Most of my pictures are taken at my home station, but there are so many places here that I haven’t seen. Not to mention, despite me being here my whole life, there are so many places in Japan I haven’t been to. I always get excited thinking of the possibilities of finding hidden places filled with beauty. The day I took this, I definitely did.

Also, I was EXTREMELY happy when I found out that it was featured on Vogue Italia. Thank you so much! screenshot2

And thank YOU for reading < 3 Would love to hear any questions or comments you may have : )



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The Struggle is Real


The struggle is real when you try to flee from your creative mind
When you want to give up, because the road is paved with problems and agitation
The struggle is real when you feel like you aren’t good enough,
And when you don’t know what the future holds
When you feel yourself being buried
By your own hands
The mind and feelings you once had
Slowly disappearing under mounds of dirt
Where did that love and passion go?

The struggle is real when you want to give up,
When trying has become a chore,
And all you want to do is settle for what you have
Instead of reaching, twisting, arching your back and arms for what you want
I can’t reach, You tell yourself.
It hurts to try, You whisper under strained breath

The struggle is real.
But few know and ever fewer realize for themselves,
That the more you struggle
The closer you are to being free.