Rebecca Massey (1977). From Monterrey, Mexico. Film Production degree from the University of Texas, USA. I was first moved by motion pictures, and the aspect in movies I was most interested in was the camera and the art direction. I slowly started focusing more on the technical aspect of motion film cameras, until I realized I liked still photography best.
Then I started exploring photography as a medium to create artistic portraits because I was never too interested in documentary photography.
I always stage, rehearse, and plan my photographs, they are anything but spontaneous! Then I tweak them in Photoshop for days until I’m happy with the result.
My main influences and inspiration come from classical painters. My brother is an amazing painter who is obsessed with the techniques of the Great Masters, and passed that obsession on to me. He taught me many things about light and shadow, color, composition, posing, and taught me how to study those painters meticulously.
We would study together the works of Titian, Raphael, Michelangelo, Caravaggio, Rembrandt, Velazquez, Rubens, Van Dyck, Ingres, Bouguereau, Waterhouse, J.E. Millais, Alma-Tadema, among others. I would say that those artists are the most influential to me, and therefore I have become obsessed myself in trying to recreate a painterly look in my photographs.
I also like the movement and eeriness in the works of Francis Bacon, and the muted tones and compositions in Andrew Wyeth’s work.
Painting takes a lot of patience, and I certainly have the patience to sit in front of a computer and tweak my images in Photoshop for days, but what doesn’t exist in painting is the undo button, and that’s one of the main reasons why I couldn’t become a painter. It’s not easy to change one’s mind in painting, and I change my mind constantly. Painters are different creatures, and some of them might say that this type of photography, the one that resembles paintings is cheating. I would say that art can take many forms, and thanks to modern technologies some of us who couldn’t have dreamt of recreating the images that lived in our imagination now can translate our wildest visions to photographs, it’s just a different method to express and create art, and to me it’s just as valid.
My visions are populated with evocative, dream-like imagery. Imaginary worlds and places that exist in a different reality, one that resembles ours but where everything is possible, much like in our dreams or nightmares.
Currently I am busy working on images for book covers, doing commissioned work and teaching post-processing techniques.