Fashion Weekly Talks | Beth Mitchell

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 What is the inspiration behind your latest work?

This new body of underwater works is part of a series called "The Imaginarium" which is loosely inspired by a recent fairy tale movie "The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus" staring the beautiful supermodel, Lily Cole. I was inspired by a visual mix of sophisticated beauty and emotive darker toned themes, which is what the series is made up of.

Do you have a favourite memory whilst shooting 'The Imaginarium'?

We had heaps of fun shooting the series, we are a small team so we got to know each other so well, but aside from the fun memories I think my favourite moment was that after spending hours building the hero stage shot in the pool, it came together. I had painted a two-metre long timber sign and stage structure, hung the curtains and the trees and more and it just looked great. Such a great moment to feel I had pushed my boundaries to what I could create.

Why did you choose to work with a smaller team in creating the underwater series?

Beth Mitchell

For me personally, I wanted to really own the project as an artist, as it was more of a personal art project than a typical "collaborative editorial". I wanted each of the team members to feel really accomplished in what they had achieved in their area of expertise.

By shooting underwater, do you believe you are pushing the boundaries in photography?

I wouldn't say "pushing the boundaries", because people have shot underwater before. I would say more developing a niche without as much influence and inspiration freely available. I think I push my own boundaries and that is what is important, and if others are impacted in a different way photographically and artistically, well that is such an honour.

What advice would you give to aspiring photographers?

To develop your own style and niche where you content and inspired. Keep developing yourself nonstop and understand where you need to improve. I have learnt that this is a really long journey, and for those who are in it for the long run, don't ware yourselves down trying to achieve all you want over night.

Would you ever consider yourself an artist?

Yes, 100%. I don't fit into being a commercial photographer, and I excitedly welcome photography into the art realm and see more of a place for me in that world long-term. I love the artistic expression and the freedom to better my work visually.

What has been the biggest learning experience in your career?

l'imperatrice

Whilst work consumes my life, it can't be what defines my worth as a person or change my perspective on what the most important things in life are. I learnt this when my father (very close friend and artistic mentor) passed away a few years ago. I think that event really changed certain ways I saw my career. It was the first time I would have been willing to give it up. When that horrible event occurred I lost inspiration, and when I regained it, (which was the development of "The Imaginarium") it came with a healthy perspective and view of life and everyday happiness.

What's is next for you?

After sleeping for a long time and catching up on my everyday work, I will be heading over seas throughout May to regather my thoughts and inspirations to begin working towards something new and exciting...

www.bethmitchell.com.au