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1 January 2014
in my secret life
Now Playing: the be good tanyas - only in the past
Topic: collaborations


This update comes a little late, given we posted at the start of December, but the current weaving words into light collaboration between Sarah Mercer and myself, was inspired by Leonard Cohen's song, 'In My Secret Life'.

With the arrival of the new year, I'm determined to make a stronger effort to post updates to my blog, whether in the form of new work I'm creating, or older images I've managed to now work through and edit.

I managed to edit quite a lot of older work during the past year or so, but very little of it made it onto my blog, or even onto my website, so I hope to rectify that this year. Many of the posts will be image posts, but maybe I'll even manage some words here and there.

2013 was a good year for the most part, though for much of it I felt like I was in a holding pattern:

I made a conscious effort to minimise my shooting and concentrate on the mammoth backlog of images stored on my hard drives that had not been seen by anyone but myself. I managed to complete editing of thousands of photographs taken during a road trip in 2009, another road trip in 2010, and the majority of photographs taken during my residency at Hospitalfield in 2011. The bulk of posts to come will allow you to see that work.

I'm still working through the self-portraits from my residency and working on creating my interior / exterior book, and I'll keep you updated on the progress of that.

I was pleased to have my work exhibited in London for the first time in October, at the Printspace. That was definitely a highlight for me. I hope it will be only the first of many exhibitions here in the UK.

My partner, Kyle, joined me in London in mid-July, which was a pretty momentous and long-anticipated event, after having been in London for 2.5 years already myself at that point. We are quite excited that in the next week or so we will move into a flat of our own, which will no doubt give a greater opportunity for new shoots. Effectively living in one overcrowded bedroom can tend to stifle one's inspiration.

2014 is definitely feeling like a year of promising beginnings and it is upon my shoulders to ensure I maintain momentum. I am optimistic...


Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 19:02 GMT
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26 March 2013
us & the darkness
Now Playing: fiona bevan - us and the darkness
Topic: collaborations

The latest collaboration between myself and Sarah Mercer is now up on weaving words into light.

Go take a look!

Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 22:16 BST
Updated: 26 March 2013 22:16 BST
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10 March 2013
there is more wisdom in your body than in your deepest philosophy
Now Playing: amy winehouse - cupid
Topic: collaborations

there is more wisdom in your body than in your deepest philosophy 
- friedrich nietzsche.

The latest instalment of my project with Sarah Mercer is now up on weaving words into light.


Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 22:11 BST
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2 March 2013
weaving words into light
Now Playing: pj harvey - you come through
Topic: collaborations

I've been collaborating with Brisbane writer, Simon Groth, on i see a pattern forming since May 2011. Though our posts have been minimal lately, this is still a work in progress, and the concentration of late has been more about how to make this collaboration come to life in a place other than the internet.

A recent collaboration with McKenzie Johnson, an American photographer currently based in China, is much less formal, and taking place as a sort of dialogue, loosely titled 'Alone Together'. We are currently posting the first tentative responses to each other via Flickr, but may take the conversation to a place more consolidated in the future. I will keep you updated on that.

Slightly more recently, myself and Canadian photographer, Sarah Mercer, have taken to collaborating one on one after being involved in the Divine Diptych Project. We both enjoyed that experience, which often took a second place to life for many members of the Divine Sisterhood, so we thought we'd branch out on our own.

The work we are producing for this project is based on themes coming from song or movie titles and quotes, weaving words into light. Some images, like the first, will be diptychs, but that is not a requirement of the project. We're both excited about where this might lead.

Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 19:13 GMT
Updated: 2 March 2013 19:16 GMT
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11 June 2011
i see a pattern forming
Topic: collaborations

i see a pattern forming

So, as I alluded to in my last post, I have been working on a new project with a writer from Brisbane, Simon Groth, that we're now launching and making public, initially as a blog, but which is ultimately intended for publication as a luscious coffee table book of text and image.

Simon and I met through the ever-lovely Lisa Dempster, former publisher at Vignette Press and current Director of the Emerging Writers' Festival, amongst numerous other writerly exploits in Melbourne and beyond.

I provided a cover image for Simon's short story, Coda, the first issue of the first series of Vignette Press' Mini Shots, way back in 2007. We met, albeit briefly, a few months later at the launch of the series at Federation Square in Melbourne; then not again until I moved to Brisbane. But we continued to harbour an admiration for each others' work, and he approached me last year, before I left that big brown land, to see if I might be interested in undertaking this project with him.

Suffice to say, I was keen and here we are.

I hope you enjoy our collaborative creativity, and hopefully, organically, over the next while you'll see the work blossoming, and a pattern forming.

Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 00:32 BST
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2 October 2009
Now Playing: nick cave & the bad seeds - let love in
Topic: collaborations


Photographer and graphic designer, Nick Kind, got in touch with me through my site about 18 months ago.

Hailing from Leicester, England, he's been in Melbourne for about 3 years, and we share a penchant for capturing the minutiae of everyday life. His series The Shore and some of his portraiture particularly caught my eye when I first visited his site.

Two days before I left Melbourne, we finally met up in person and did a shoot in the evening at a studio on Smith Street in Fitzroy. Nick wanted to explore the idea of feeling trapped and was looking for a model, so asked me if I'd be that model.

It was a lot of fun and really easy; much less daunting than I'd expected. Especially considering we only talked on the phone for the first time the night before, and had only met in person an hour or so before starting to shoot.

Above and below are a few of my favourite images from the shoot.



Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 13:05 BST
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27 September 2009
Now Playing: nick cave & the bad seeds - let love in
Topic: collaborations


My friendship with Claudia Phares began with a dead wombat. Specifically, this one.

A mutual friend, Melissa, told me she'd come across my print hanging on Claudia's wall at a party one evening. Though Melissa had never seen the image before, she instinctively recognised it as one of mine and asked if she could take it down to confirm the details on the back of the frame.

As the print had sold in a Dutch auction at Brunswick Street Gallery, and I'd not known the buyer, it was strange and cool to hear of a friend's random encounter with it.

Sometime not long after that, Claudia and I met each other at an opening at BSG. From there we became fast friends and I discovered that, not only is she a voracious collector of the work of emerging artists, she is an emerging artist herself.

After numerous encounters at openings, and meeting up to discuss art and photography over coffee, the idea arose at her engagement party that we should try to do some sort of collaboration before I moved north. As she was off to Western Australia and the Northern Territory on exploratory jaunts, and I was crazy-busy with moving and such-like, we only had a small window of time to create images and plan our collaboration.

So, whilst I was mightily hungover from my leaving drinks the Sunday before I left Melbourne, we managed to coordinate a joint self-portrait exploring the concept of friendship or amistad.

We wanted to express how friendship does not only exist if the two friends are in the same place at the same time. It is also about the nature of the connection.

Working with Claudia was fun and inspiring, and we both regret the fact we hadn't worked together until just before I left, but we do intend to work together again in the future wherever we may meet; and irrespective of where we are, we will always remain strong friends with a wonderful connection.

Thank you to Claudia for the concept for this shoot, and for instigating my most public, partially-clothed self-portrait, joint or otherwise, to date. Not only did we agree on meeting in Fitzroy Gardens in the centre of Melbourne, we also managed (unintentionally) to time our shoot to coincide with seemingly unending foot traffic from the MCG after an AFL match! Suffice to say our presence and odd behaviour drew quite a lot of attention.

Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 07:53 BST
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26 September 2009
drawing restraint
Now Playing: lamb - fear of fours
Topic: collaborations

by Paul Ruiz

About two years ago, Melbourne-based painter Paul Ruiz came across my profile on Artabase and got in contact with me about my work.

I was extremely flattered, as on viewing his work online, I was greatly impressed with his portraiture and painting technique.

When the next opportunity arose to view his work at Lindberg Contemporary in Collingwood, I was sure to visit in order to see his paintings up close.

Having gotten to know him better in person over the past two years I've found him to be particularly generous with his time, and willing to share his knowledge and experiences as a practicing artist.

I then also had the opportunity a few months ago to sit for him as a model for some sketches. One of his charcoal sketches from the session is shown above.

Aside from being rendered in caricature airbrush in a very short session by an artist-for-hire as a tourist at Disney World many years ago, I'd never sat for a painter or their sketching before. But knowing Paul's style of portraiture and being comfortable with him on a personal level made it really easy. We talked about representation, pricing, future plans, the sort of folk we enjoy portraying within our respective mediums, and numerous other subjects during the course of the afternoon, both whilst I sat for him, and over tea in breaks. The experience was very calming and inspiring for me, especially in a window of time that was otherwise quite stressful.

Unfortunately due to hectic schedules during the last month or two of my time in Melbourne, and his (at the time) impending wedding (now done, and he's relaxing in Thailand for a while), we weren't able to coordinate to arrange a second sitting, but I would definitely make time to sit for Paul when we are next in the same city.

Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 09:46 BST
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19 September 2009
Now Playing: tori amos - american doll posse
Topic: collaborations

untitled #15

An image from a recent collaboration with Claudia Phares

For someone like myself who is something of a self-confessed control freak, who enjoys self-portraiture specifically for the fact I have total artistic control over all aspects of the image, you would think I'd consider "collaboration" to be a dirty word.

Not so, however.

Though until recently it's been something of a haphazard happening for me, it is fast becoming an experience I embrace and relish the fruits of.

Obviously in portraiture there is always at least some element of collaboration. Even where the concept and intention is primarily formulated and directed by the photographer, few models are totally malleable blank canvases and will undoubtedly always give some direction to a shoot through their actions, expressions, and reactions, both verbal and non-verbal. This includes what I refer to as "cameos" by friends within my 365 Days series.

Other portraiture shoots I've done have been very much collaborative and free-form, with myself and the model improvising off each other, props, locations, etc.

Outside of portraiture, I've also undertaken indirect collaborations with artists working in other mediums, whether it be creating images for Vignette Press' first Mini Shots series and The Big Issue's fiction editions; or becoming the subject of an illustrator's interpretation of montaged versions of my self-portraiture and travel images.

In other instances I've created a series or single images as part of collaborative projects based on a theme, such as the series I produced with Aline Smithson for issue #34 of F-Stop Magazine.

However, it's only in the past twelve months or so that my collaborations with others have involved me taking on a modeling role directed by another artist, or a two-way dialogue with another self-portrait artist, the first of these being as a model for Paul Louis Villani's "Born from this earth..." series.

Over the next few posts I'll showcase some of the collaborations (or modeling roles, in two instances) I've recently undertaken with three Melbourne artists I admire, and I look forward to the collaborations planned as part of my overseas travels in 2010.

As much as I tend to be quite insular in my work and enjoy the ultimate control that comes with self-portraiture, there is something amazingly freeing and inspiring about being directed by another artist you trust and admire; and working with other artists you admire is a fantastic way to learn more about the way they think and work, and the creative ideas and impulses they have.

Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 14:12 BST
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18 September 2008
born from this earth and taken by the wind
Now Playing: goldfrapp - black cherry
Topic: collaborations

born from this earth and taken by the wind

This is not a self-portrait.

This is the fantastic brainchild and imaginings of Paul Louis Villani.

In addition to taking self-portraits in pastel-coloured rooms and halls, and photographing gorgeous girls in frocks, and topless long-locked boys in the shiny steel drawers of the morgue; I also made time during the recent weekend at Aradale to climb into a metal chimney for Mr Villani with contortionist moves that closely resembled the way a chicken wishbone looks not long before it is split in two between you and your sibling.

Despite how that sounds, it was a pleasure posing for him whilst Karen threw material in the air on short notice. Finally a little proof that I can look presentable in photos others take of me! [And you can view it larger here].

Paul's image above and his other entries can be seen at Brunswick Street Gallery's Picture This prize until the 25th of September. In the same room you can see my four entries into the prize, and around the whole gallery there are many wonderful photographs by many local photographers whose work I love.

If you're roundabout these parts you might like to drop in from 6-9pm Wednesday 24th September for the closing night announcement of prizes.

Posted by Bronwen Hyde at 08:17 BST
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