Selfie Conscious ~ Artist Cindy Sherman

An American photographic icon from the 1960s up to current, Cindy Sherman takes self portraits portraying various women's roles in society.  She has pushed boundaries in exposing domestic violence issues and ridiculing fashion standards, as a study of human behavior and humanity as a whole.  Her avant-garde photos range from black&white film stills to almost violent narratives, even depicting varying races in her mocked-up self portraits.  She explores actually "being" iconic american figures, such as Marylin Monroe, or the classic working girl.  Recently her portraits have gone for record breaking highs at Christie's Auctionhouse.  Cindy Sherman is one of my own art idols.  

 

Despite my former modeling career, leadership skills & sunny Aries disposition, i'm perpetually a shy-girl artist type.  Though thousands of selfies are taken every day, i still struggle to join the selfie bandwagon.  I find many social media profiles filled with photos of themselves, and wonder if this person has anything else in their life to share, besides the blatant portrayal of vanity and self-exploitation exuded.  Cindy Sherman's ultra-staged still narratives use the body as a prop, in a way that takes the self-exploitation out of it, becoming anything other than herself.  

 

I admire those who make candid posts daily in their real life.  This kind of selfie brings humility and self-acceptance.  Being self critical from my past programming in modeling, i grew up hyper aware & self conscious, protecting my image as much as i could, from press and un-edited photo sessions, under an illusion of self-control.  I began to heal my selfie-conscious side by giving permission to follow Cindy's example- be tongue-in-cheek, pursue creativity with abandon, and let the impression of the photo belong to the viewer.  In this way, the selfie becomes self-less.  

 

Although i do believe that every portrait is a self portrait, It brings me joy when followers are pleasantly surprised that i included my face in the photo.  Many clients are loved ones who are far away, who rarely see me in person.  I must remind myself not to hold back from allowing my image to brighten their day, because it feels great when it does.  :D  Thanks Cindy for your example

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