‘elemental’ photo essay explores self-identification, black magic, and power

August 4, 2017
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Check out ‘Elemental’, a new photo series by creative director Lauren Machen and photographer John Michael Fulton. Inspired by her experiences growing up as biracial in a society that makes you choose one box and her complicated and challenging journey of self-exploration and identity. “This work is inspired by my own experience but also by the words from actor Jesse Williams’ acceptance speech for the BET Humanitarian Award in 2016,” Machen tells AFROPUNK.

“‘Just because we’re magic, does not mean that we are not real’ that resonated so deeply with me. I was so moved by the power in those words. So I chose to incorporate the classical elements in the photographs. Water, Earth, Fire, Air and also used the falling sand as a symbol of passing time. There’s a mystery and magic to these elements yet they are very real. They’re so massive in their natural form and cannot really be contained. I want to convey ideas of strength and power through their connection to the body by using the models’ hands and feet.”

See the full project, here.

Creative Direction + Set Design: Lauren Machen (@machenmachen)
Photography: John Michael Fulton (@jmichaelfulton)
Stylist: Leah Henken (@leahhenken)
Hair: Sparkle Tafao (@sparkletafao)
Make-up: Amy Strozzi (@amystrozzi)
Models: Algo Brehane (@algobrehane), Quinn Falls (@splashointhecut), Jordan Norwood (@jwood95_)