Linda Blacker’s latest photo series sees her recreating iconic and world famous paintings.
Linda is a fine arts photographer who has worked with various online publications and YouTubers. Some of her notable works include her diversity series, which featured 14 BAME creators, and her Modern Women – YouTuber Vintage series.
Recently, Linda found herself wanting to push herself creatively in 2019. Speaking with TenEighty, she shares how she felt “a little underwhelmed” by the work she produced last year:
“I found myself looking back on a lot of the work I had produced in 2018 and felt as though I hadn’t been pushing myself creatively. I just felt a little underwhelmed with my work, like there was something missing, and that can be quite a gutting feeling. It’s a phase I go through sometimes. I’m ultimately proud of all the of the pieces I created last year, but sometimes self-doubt catches up with you and you feel like there isn’t much you can do.”
Linda’s personal work tends to lend itself to the fantasy and mythical worlds and is something she had to put to the wayside due to other projects in 2018. This year, she’s revisiting her love for the subject matter. On 13 January, she uploaded the first photograph in a new series, which features her recreating iconic paintings from history. The first image shared was her interpretation of Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper, and the idea came from her exploring the imagery that inspires her and how Renaissance painters were able to tell entire stories with a single piece.
According to Linda, The Last Supper photograph came her wanting “to explore temptation and sin, expressed through the red dress, red apple and my red hair. It was a play on the story of Eve”. At first, the idea was to only create the one image, but, upon seeing the audience reaction the idea, snowballed and she decided to launch the new series, which now includes recreations of Sandro Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus and Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam.
“At first, I wasn’t even sure if I would be able to recreate these paintings, but now I feel confident in the process and I’m really proud of the outcome,” she explains. “I feel like my inspiration was dipping quite a bit last year, but now I feel so motivated to make so many new pieces and really push myself each time. So much so that I am intertwining the style that I have developed through this series into my other work.”
Linda creates everything seen in the photographs from scratch, including the landscapes and minor details. She stays away from using any part of the original paintings, wanting to make her interpretations all her own: “I have to think about perspective and lighting for every element of the shot, as well as posing and costumes for my portraits, and that’s before I spend 10 hours in post-production bringing them all together.”
Those who are fans of this project can expect to see many more entries throughout the coming weeks, and Linda says she hopes to incorporate aspects of this style of photography into her future work:
“I have a lot more to come in this series, as well as bringing this newly discovered style into other areas of my photography work, to develop it and hopefully keep progressing and growing as an artist. I hope everybody continues to enjoy the series as much as I’m enjoying creating it!”
New photographs in the series can be viewed through Linda’s Instagram.