All photos by Elizaveta Porodina. Used with Creative Commons permission.
Apart from straightforward headshots and stylish fashion editorials, portrait photography has also been a potent tool for imparting emotive visual narratives and ideas. This is why we’re always on the lookout for photography inspiration that digs deeper into the human psyche. The latest of our favorites is a recent series by Elizaveta Porodina. Brimming with drama and expression, it’s a perfect example of how portraiture can be a vehicle for exploring the human mind, heart, and body.
Porodina didn’t have it on her Behance page for this series, but a bit of online sleuthing led us to an Instagram post where she had a something to say about it. She teamed up with performance artist, dancer, and friend Uma Shannon to “tell this meditative dark fairy tale story about growing pains, nightmares, and becoming a true version of yourself. ”
Indeed, the series feels like a journey into someone’s troubled psyche. Uma Shannon’s bare styling and variety of poses give an impression of the self being exposed — emotions, thoughts, expressions, and all. But there are also props, installations, and effects that serve as clues into what’s going on in the subject’s persona. The grainy and contrasty look complements these visual elements to make this a thought-provoking body of work.
This collaboration with Uma Shannon is just one of the slight departures from Porodina’s usual vibrant, fashion-oriented work. It’s easy to get drawn into it. It’s refreshing to see her explore portraiture from a more intuitive and psychological point of view. This body of work is a testament to the creative possibilities that the genre offers, and how we’re only limited by our vision and imagination.
If you loved this series, we also suggest moving on to Dmitri Pryahin’s raw portraits of inner monologues in unusual expressions.
Don’t forget to check out the features we have so far about Elizaveta Porodina, as well as her website and Behance portfolio.