Photographer Melissa Bring always knew she was going to make pictures. Be sure to RSVP to see her photographs hanging at Cinespace in Hollywood on Thursday, August 5th at the next RAW showcase. She talks to us about her work.
Tell us about yourself.
I was born and raised in Montana where I grew up riding dirt bikes and racing motocross.
How did you first get started making art?
I knew from the first time I picked up a camera in 3rd grade that I wanted to become a professional photographer. I would have my younger sister and her friend’s model for me. I entered every photography competition that was available to me.
How would you describe your aesthetic?
Having grown up amidst the scenic beauty of Montana I quickly acquired an appreciation for art. I feel my aesthetic comes from my Montana roots with a pepper of fashion influence. I have an extreme obsession with magazines. I have each magazine organized by publication and issue date in one of my closets! I cannot bear to throw away a magazine.
From where do you draw inspiration for your work?
I draw a lot of my inspiration from personalities I meet. I like creating concepts and feelings based on the people that come into my life. However, two individuals that greatly inspire me are Andy Warhol and Mario Testino. Their work excites me!
What do you love most about what you do?
Meeting talented, motivated and inspirational artists and individuals.
Do you engage in, or draw inspiration from, any other forms of art?
I get engaged and inspired by amazing fashion, sculptures and abstract paintings. I would give anything to be able to take a paintbrush, throw my emotions on a canvas and in return it becomes pure beauty!
From start to finish, explain your process; what does a typical art-making day look like for you?
A basic shoot day consists of arriving to set, pre-lighting before talent & client arrives. Going over last minute concepts and ideas with client. Wardrobe runs through with talent once arrived. Shooting 5-10 looks depending on job and usage of imagery.
Medium of choice?
Digital Canon Mark II 5D or Hassy 503 with P30+
What sort of techniques does you most like working with?
I love to explore with lighting techniques and how to create amazing imagery with as little as possible. I like the challenge! I am not sure my assistants always care for it … but we always end up with great results.
Are there any artists or art movements, past or present, that strongly inform and influence your work?
I was always impressed with Jerry Ulsman and his dark room creations. It may not seem like a great talent now that we have Photoshop. His imagination intrigued me … I really admire his dedication to his ideas and concepts.
Any previous exhibitions/collaborations that you are particularly proud of?
Past Awards/Exhibitions: 2004 Chaz Exhibition; 2005 Artifact Gallery Exhibition; 2010 chosen featured Photographer for SUGAR art and fashion show.
Any accomplishments/goals you hope to achieve as an artist in the future?
I have been working on an exhibition show to raise money for the Lupus Foundation. The art pieces I am making are very detailed and time consuming. I hope to have a show by end of spring 2011.
Why showcase at RAW?
I love what RAW Stands for and what they do to bring awareness to talented individuals!
Favorite thing to do outside of your craft?
Read magazines, golf and enjoying the outdoors
Any current rising stars within the art arena that you would recommend we look out for?
There are so many talented individuals that come to mind. The top three would be; Justin Wheeler who is a talented still life & food photographer, Jessi Mount a jewelry artist extraordinaire and Kyle Bring a rising director.