"It is important to be curious, to explore, to go down rabbit holes, to day dream, but also to be gentle with yourself."Miami-based photographer, Sonya Revell, is The CAMP’s Artist of the Month for August 2023. Her Award winning series, Queef Latina Stars in Cabana Fever shown as part of our SCOPE 2021 booth features a fanciful drag fairytale starring the iconic local Drag Queen, Queef Latina. This series highlights the joy and fantasy consistent throughout Revell’s work, displayed boldly in scenes of dazzling glamour and colorful extravagance, and this oppurtunity gives us a moment to question and reflect on some of her thoughts on the artistic process as a photographer.Is there an artist that you feel inspired you to become an artist?Tim Burton’s movies made a huge impact on me as a child and as a latch-key kid in the 1990s, I was heavily influenced by pop culture, MTV, and music videos. Later, in college, I discovered and was inspired by photographers like David LaChapelle, Philippe Halsman, Floria Sigismondi, and Rodney Smith.Pictured above; Queef Latina in Baby Velvet, 2019When did you know that you were an artist?I don’t think there was a definitive moment, I just always knew I enjoyed the creative process and using my imagination. As an only child (until the age of 18) with two working parents, I often had to entertain myself and used creativity as a form of escapism.Do you have a routine when creating art? What does your process look like?To generate new ideas, I have to allow myself to day dream and let my mind wander. This is an important part of my process. Once I have a concept and I’ve let it simmer a bit, I try to pinpoint the best location, type of lighting, subject, hair/ makeup, and props that would help bring the idea to life. During the actual image-making process I try not to box myself in, but rather allow myself to experiment and play.What are your biggest takeaways from your process?Allow your mind to wander. Boredom can actually be a good thing. Be curious. Find topics that interest you and go down rabbit holes. Explore and go on adventures. All of these help breed interesting ideas.Pictured above; Queef Latina in Morning Glory, 2019What is the most important thing you have learned about being an artist?It is important to be curious, to explore, to go down rabbit holes, to day dream, but also to be gentle with yourself. For me, creativity can be quite cyclical. I don’t always feel creative and that’s ok. I don’t do my best work when I try to force it. But if I’m feeling inspired it’s almost like a compulsion to create. I have to get it out.Which is your favorite museum/art space and why?The City Museum in St. Louis, MO (where I went to college) is by far my favorite art space. Sometimes museums can feel too sterile and the art feels unapproachable. What I love about the City Museum is how interactive the space is and that it demonstrates that anything can be made into art.
What do you want the viewer to gain when encountering your work?
Generally I want the viewer to walk away from my work feeling curious, dazzled, inspired, and maybe just a little lighter on their feet.
To see Sonya's full catalog of works, click here to view the entire selection on Artsy
A sit-down discussion and look at works by May's artist of the month, Ziesook YouThe CAMP is pleased to present and feature for our May artist of the month, Korean artist Ziesook You, a more recent arrival into our collective roster. We wanted to be able to get a more in depth look at the inspiration and creation process that Ziesook takes into her transformative floral arrangements, taking a spin on traditional portraiture and the reasoning behind the multi-faceted and layered photographs shes made her own.
"If you are fortunate enough to be able to combine your passion with your profession... life seems a little bit more bearable."Galician photographer, musician, and composer Xan Padrón is The CAMP's Artist of the Month for March 2023.His successful Time Lapse series is emblematic of his intentional and patient brand of observational photography. Each Time Lapse yields a meditative, composite portrait that highlights its site’s unique rhythm and aura, reminding us that sometimes, the most special moments are the ones we aren't even thinking about.Read on to learn more about Padrón’s Time Lapse series, his process and influences, and what keeps this project so enduring.
A conversation with The CAMP's Artist of the Month, February 2023Mindy Sue Meyers invites viewers to travel through time, not to rehash or do-over, but to preserve what lives inside of them. Through sculptural and textile-based assemblages of toys, ephemera, fabric, and trinkets, Meyers evokes memories of bygone eras with humor and sentimentality.“This variety of materials resonates with my childhood history of building collections and searching for comfort among my possessions. With a heavy 80’s and 90’s pop culture aesthetic, I encourage the connection my work has to the past and I hope to preserve a link to the nostalgia it creates. Each finished piece is an invitation for viewers to discover something from their own childhoods and sustain precious memories.”
A Conversation with January 2023's Artist of the MonthHappy New Year!We're kicking things off with a spotlight on CAMP artist Johnny Ramstedt. The Finnish painter, adept at blurring the delicate line that separates abstract expressionism and minimalism, works in in large-scale. The pieces, all of which contain some form of commercial-use paint (namely house paint and alkyd) are technically untitled; still, somewhere within, they contain fleeting or even omitted elements of moments shared and experienced, and ultimately defined by a viewer.
Read on for a conversation between the artist and CAMP founder, Melanie Prapopoulos.