We had the good fortune of connecting with Shelly Mosman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shelly, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
I believe risk-taking is a part of growth and that without it, creativity is stunted. I enjoy the feeling of healthy fear; fear brings humility, which in turn brings gratitude and, finally, that overall state of happiness and contentment we all long for. It’s always worth walking into the darkness because the rewards on the other side are what allow us growth and change. Then we do it over again and again. Risk is a part of my creative process. I’m quite the procrastinator; allowing things to just happen and fall into place has worked well for me creatively. There’s a very fine balance between organizing and letting go and I have found the sweet spot. Offering clients something unique can be a risk, but it’s always worth the journey.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
In today’s digital visual age, one has to stand a part or get lost in the ocean of images. Once I had had a photography career for over a decade, it was very necessary for me to reinvent myself and find my true voice. I was forced to let go of all the things that preoccupied my mind-things I had no control over-and seriously focus on what’s inside and bring it forward. It was a huge risk, but I had made a decision and I needed to listen to my gut, not my head. I’ve always been a portrait photographer, being a portrait artist came later. I only found my true style after I was forced to look for it. Early theater sets, photo studio backdrops, and props play a huge role in my own studio set-up. The Romantic era, the works of Rossetti, and Dutch paintings, portraits and subject matter inspire my overall aesthetic. My ‘Animal Child’ series captures children and animals within elaborate studio environments. It inspired my ‘Mother Child’ and ‘Father Child’ collections. My inventory of wardrobe and props is constantly growing because of my innate love of flea markets, thrift stores and antique shops. I’m my own stylist, set designer, art director, photographer, digital technologist, and everything else needed to run a studio. I love it, and I have to admit, I can’t do much else, so this is the job for me. It has me constantly reinventing and creating new environments to share with my subjects. Working together in the studio, my subjects and I can live in the moment and have some play- time, letting go of everything going on outside the studio doors.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
When I’m in Venice and friends come into town our first stop is always a Korean spa experience-a perfect way to start the weekend. I’d rather spend time walking around than driving, so I gravitate to the Abbot Kinney neighborhood. I love the Abbot Kinney flea market on Saturdays; some of my favorite pickers and designers are there and I always leave with unique, curated finds. We rent some bikes and take a boardwalk cruise to Santa Monica, making sure stop and grab some lemonade. I found I can ride as slow as the people walking; I love those beach cruiser bikes! As far as restaurants, I’ll always remember my first introduction to Barrique Venice-romantically cozy with amazingly fresh, authentic Italian cuisine. For French food, Zinque has a neighborhood vibe and the prices are great; order the Bronzino! For a neighborhood bar during the day I like Roosterfish, though a night, it can get a bit busy. As for clubs, Good Times at Davey Wayne’s is a treat. In the end, nothing beats hanging out with friend at home into the late hours.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d like to give a shout out to all my fans, followers and clients. Without their continued feedback and positive reinforcement, I may have taken a different path and not made it to this point, at which I feel most connected to my work, thank you.
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