One of the great things about living in one city for any length of time is that as an artist you find other artists to work and collaborate with. As you develop you find sensibilities that dovetail with one another. One of these long time residents is another bat in Vancouver’s belfry. I was a fan of her art prior to working with her. But seeing her talent and storytelling develop over the years has been exhilarating.
I speak so highly of the lovely Danielle Anathema. A long time fixture in the goth/industrial community and a SFX artist. I first came across her work via our mutual friend Spooksy DeLune. After seeing her work ‘Trophy‘ and ‘Itsy Spooksy Spider‘ I knew I wanted a chance to work this immensely talented lady. So when the chance came up to come together I pounced on it – as well as making her willing victim as part of my demented attraction to tentacle porn. Again, I’ve the chance with my digital quill and parchment here to share her work on a larger platform and ask her some questions I’ve been curious about myself….
1) LMR: You were inspired to start creating these images from nightmares as a childhood. Was there ever a recurring nightmare that you recall? Have you recreated it in any of your images?
DA: There were quite a few reoccurring ones, but most of my dreams contained the same theme. A lot of demonic possessions and gore. I have definitely brought a few of my dreams to life in one way or another. I did a lot of screaming in my nightmares and I’m sure you’ve noticed a few screams in my work.
2) LMR: How much of your work is influence from pop-horror culture (traditional themes) vs current editorial? Do you have a preference?
DA: I love both and it really does depend on my mood. The more disturbing images do seem to lean more towards the editorial look and my campier work has more of a traditional feel.
3) LMR: The subject of your work are primarily women. Do you feel that maybe women are confronted by horror on a more regular basis or is it that women have a tendency to be darker than their male counterparts?
DA: I feel that everyone has faced horror to some degree in their lives no matter what sex they are. I do tend to photograph more ladies because a) I can relate to them better, b) they seem to be able to express their darkness easier. I’m approached by 95% females, and besides the fact that I shoot Horror, I feel me being female myself adds a comfort level; especially when it is a more vulnerable subject matter. I think women can naturally show emotion easier then a lot of men, which could partly have to do with society placing stigmas on what “real” men can show. Of course I would be lying if I said that a scantily clad lady is more appealing to me as well
4) LMR: What first inspired you to pick up your camera?
DA: My mom gave me her camera to play with when I was 12. I started dressing up my sister and creating stories to capture on film, which I still use her to this day. When I was 13 I took some darkroom classes and was hooked for life.
5) LMR: When you work with a model, do you prefer to approach them with an idea? Do they come to you? Is it a collaboration?
DA: Most of the time it is my concept, but have done collaborations as well. I tend to get to know the model/client a bit first to see what sort of scene would suit their personality. I find the person is able to express themselves in front of the camera much easier when they’re passionate about the subject matter, which adds to the depth. It is actually quite rare that I shoot a standard “model”, they’re usually a performer or artist of some kind, which brings great opportunities for collaborative ideas that can be morphed into a wicked concept.
6) LMR: What are some of your adult nightmares and horrors that keep you up at night?
DA: Oddly enough I welcome nightmares now. I had to learn from a young age to embrace the darkness and find the beauty in it in order to survive mentally; it was too much being terrified all of the time. As for the bad dreams that would actually scare me now, they’re usually about finances or animals dying horrible deaths… which I do NOT enjoy.
7) LMR: You’ve published some amazing calendars. Where can people find your work? What are your upcoming plans for the next year?
DA: I have 2013 Calendars, prints, posters, t-shirts and postcards – all of which I sell through my website:http://anathemaphotography.
Attached images credits:
Gone Clubbing: Models: Christine Lyon & Clayton Racicot – Wardrobe: Stitch Asylum Designs – Photography, MUA/SPFX, Post: Anathema Photography – Behind the Scenes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?
Itsy Spooksy Spider: Model: Spooksy Delune – Photography, MUA/SPFX, Post: Anathema Photography – Assistant: Clayton Racicot
Road Kill: Model: Misty Graves – Photography, MUA/SPFX, Post: Anathema Photography
Gift: Models: Manda Manuel & Christine Lyon – Photography, MUA/SPFX, Post: Anathema Photography
Underwater Love: Model & MUA: Little Miss Risk – Photography, SPFX, Post: Anathema Photography – Assistant: Clayton Racicot
The Forgotten: Model: Samantha Saturnine – Wardrobe: Stitch Asylum Designs – Photography, MUA/SPFX, Post: Anathema Photography
Hugs and Hisses,
Little Miss Risk