Over a year ago I met artist Lucy O’Donovan as the art group she had started in the West End of Glasgow where she lives ,met. I was very impressed by the emotional intensity of Lucy’s painting. Lucy’s work is very much about humans, portrait, body, and seizing the vulnerability of human flesh she achieves through minute precision and tiny detail. Early this year (2013) she exhibited her work in theAgora Gallery in New York. As I got in touch with Lucy recently with the proposal of doing portraits of her as an artist in her environment, she kindly agreed for a photographic session in her home.
Lucy O’Donovan has been influenced in her paintings by the work of Jenny Saville, Lucian Freud, Alyssa Monks and Francis Bacon. In 2008 she was living with her husband in Australia where she was working in field of neuroscience when she had a traumatic brain injury which let her several weeks unconscious.
We did the photographs on a very autumnal rainy and dark light, something which would have been impossible technically without digital media only a few years back without adding artificial lighting.
One of the reasons I enjoy photography is, it gives me many opportunities to meet interesting and talented people such as artists and craftsmen (and women) and to photograph them in their environment. In August 2010 while doing photos in Milport on the island of Cumbrae at theSail and Oar Festival, I first met Laryna , a creative textile artist who has been working with natural fibres for many years. She is passionate about needle felting and makes beautiful colourful small creatures such as fairies. She uses sheep’s wool and silk. She sells her creations through the internet on the Craft Scotland website. She is also running needle felt/wet felt workshops in Galgael, a charity based in Ibrox, Glasgow and in the Albany Center in the woodland area of Glasgow.
Laryna likes creating objects such as scarfs, berets, hats, leaves, fruits, vegetables, mushrooms, but also magic creatures such as dwarfs, mermaids, fairies. Living on the outskirt of Glasgow since 2007 she finds inspiration in the beautiful Scottish countryside.
We first decided this summer to do photographs in a natural environment that would suit her craft nicely. This autumn in her house/studio where she runs felt workshops for adult and children and teaches meditation.
Laryna writes a blog where she displays most of her creations and uses a Facebook page.