This series of “Pink Wall” Dumfries portraits was taken in collaboration with a brilliant local young artist Ivor Gott for my Urban Portrait Dumfries project.

I came across this pink wall at the back of Iceland on Irish Street and took a reference shot with my phone as it seemed a great location for an urban portrait session. When I saw the greys and pinks in Ivor’s outfit choice an idea of playing on the juxtaposition between pink pastels and strong androgynous clothes and body movement emerged, introducing gender ambiguity into a traditional “girly” scene.

I emphatically did not want any “normal” or coy posing here. I needed magic, theatricality, sharp gestures and angles worthy of our urban “stage”.

We started taking photos on the back door porch of Iceland. The corner of the closed door invoked a passive, inward looking stance reminiscent of escaping, hiding from the world. The leading lines of the porch railing encouraged a more direct confrontational mode of posing.

Then Ivor found a thin metal spike lying around and interpreted it as a magic wand allowing her to come up with a succession of strong graphic poses that would work against a blank wall. I added an abandoned traffic cone to the scene to alienate our scene from the mundane even further. Below is what we created.

Confrontational stance
Inward-facing posing
Against the wall next to the Icleland back door
Stepping on the border between light and shade
“Pink Wall” portrait with Ivor
Strong theatrical gestures required
Using a metal rod as a magic wand
Playing with sharp wall shadows
Distancing from the mundane through posing
Dumfries portraits project collaboration with Ivor Gott
Adding a traffic cone to the scene
Ivor was totally OK with interpreting the”unconventional”


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