What I loved about Cindy Sherman when I first discovered her in 2001, was how she allowed her photos to have a platform and engage with its audience. Not over shadowing them by her giving them her personal theoretical context instead, choosing to leave it to her audience to decide the meaning behind each photograph.
Sometimes its about the subtly in how we present our work and allow the viewer to hold their gaze and process it to their own understandings. I absolutely loved her series of Untitled Film Stills – I just got it straight away. And gave me direction in my work particularly Being A Girl Collection .
“I did try once to use my family members or friends, and once paid an assistant. But even when I paying somebody, I still wanted to rush through and get them out of the studio. I felt i was imposing on them. Also, I got the feeling that they were having fun, to a certain extent, thinking this was like Halloween or playing-dress up. The levels I try to get too are not the having fun part.
I also realized that I myself don’t know exactly what I want from the picture, sometimes its hard to articulate that to somebody or anybody else. When I’m doing it myself I’m really just using the mirror to summon something that I don’t even know until I see.
I was feeling guilty and found it was frustrating to be successful a lot of my friends weren’t . Also I was constantly reminded of that by people in my family making jokes like, “Oh yes, she’s still dressing up like she did when she was a kid,” or “It doesn’t take any brains to be doing what she’s doing”. So I guess I was thinking, maybe I am still just dressing up, because I don’t theorize when i work. I would read theoretical stuff about my work and think, “What? Where did they get that?” The work was so intuitive for me, I didn’t know where it was coming from. So I thought I better not say anything or I’d Blow it”