Seeing Yourself Through A Lens

D U E N D E (n. - spanish)

The mysterious power of art to deeply move a person.

Back in August this year, I was lucky to collaborate with two wonderful Brazilian artists, Andrea Maia and Sarita dal Pozzo, a photographer and stylist, respectively.

I first met Andrea back in 2019 when, my best friend arranged a surprise hen do photoshoot with her. I would describe Andrea as a lively, fiery, and enthusiastic woman. Very self-confident and her own person.

I met Sarita for the first time on the day of the shoot, although we had been messaging prior to meeting. A woman with elegance and an eye for detail like no other. Beautiful and with a great sense of style (obviously!)

Andrea and Sara came together to create a wonderful project entitled Re-vista Style.

The aim? To help individuals to rethink and review their personal style and visual identity for the web.

As a quick overview, the process is more or less the following: after talking to you and finding out about what your wishes are, Sarita will ask you questions in order to understand more about you as an individual. Once she's happy, she will create your mood board which includes colour palettes, specific clothing items, make-up, hair and everything accessories. Then, they will both scout locations to bring that will help bring the idea to life.

Many have used their services to create an aesthetically pleasing and coherent Instagram theme for their accounts, as an impromptu photoshoot, beginner aspiring models that had never been photographed professionally before or as a way to capture an important moment forever.

When I came to know about the project, I was immediately intrigued and got in contact with Andrea and she suggested we collaborated. They would be photographing for the cover of their online magazine that goes out every 1st of the month.

My experience started by exchanging messages with Sarita.

After a short introduction, she asked me to tell her about me. Who Am I? What's my story?

What type of clothing to I normally wear? what colours? do I mix fabrics and colours? Do I like bright colours? Do I practise sport? Do I like art? Do I have a favourite art movement?

So we went through some of the clothing to see what sort of things I had that could fit the month's theme.

Sarita later got back to me with the mood board and needless to say, I loved it. She combined my style and my likes and put it all together beautifully.

Here's a sneak peak of the mood board...

I was going to be in Milan at the end of July, so we agreed to do the photoshoot there.

What an experience!

Four outfits changes, different locations around Milan, and a sense of nervousness and excitement. Scared and embarrassed that everyone was looking but not wanting to be, and towards the end being a lot more relaxed about it.

I am not one to take selfies, or be comfortable in front of the camera and this experience definitely put me to the test.

In the last few years, I have really disliked to see myself in photos and have avoided them.

More and more women are putting barriers in their own path because of body issues. Not letting themselves enjoy and experiment because the message passed on through the media is that our body is not good enough.

We always talk about getting out of our comfort zone, but we tend to refer to it in a more professional context. What about personally? When was the last time you challenged yourself? When was the last time you decided to do something different?

The other interesting thing about this whole experience is that you need to allow yourself to be seen through the lens and eyes of someone else. You do not command. When Andrea tells you to 'just be yourself', what do you do? How can you 'just be yourself'?

I loved the experience and would certainly repeat it with a more conscious awareness that I need to let go of negative beliefs about myself and my body.

The main lesson I learned from this: as long as you are doing something to better yourself, to improve and evolve as an individual... you are in the right path. So just keep going.

Here are some of the photos including the August 2020 cover.

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