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Daria Lazo

When working on a project, what’s your creative process?

I think it depends on the type of project. I wouldn't say there's a concrete structure for every single one. Most of the time, the creative process might seem quite chaotic to others, but it makes sense to me. It also depends a lot on where the idea came from: whether it was an inspiration and I got an image of something in my head, a memory, a feeling or an idea I feel strongly about. The medium I want the project to be realised in also matters. However, regardless of where the idea/motivation comes from, the following step would always be research, not so much theoretical but technical. I start looking for what set of skills I will need to have for it to be successful. Eventually, I do theoretical research as well and look for extra ideas that help to develop the project further. I also find that it is important to take break on each project, look at it from fresh perspective, you sometimes learn a lot coming back to it. 

Please share the story behind a piece of work.  Any unusual (if there is such a thing) inspiration? 

For my university project I lifecasted vulvas of five participants. A few years before that I worked in a sculptors studio, documenting their work and photographing sittings. It was for a rather unusual film project where they were essentially recreating characters from the film and transforming them into life-like mannequins. This experience sparked an obsession with the idea of lifecasting the body, any part of it and I decided to challenge myself by trying it as well. In the process, I realised that lifecasting can also be seen as a form of photography. I absolutely loved experimenting with that, never mind the challenges and I definitely would like to do more of that in the future. It is certainly a very fascinating process. 

What is important to you when you’re in the process of doing work?

Space. For me it is the same as with cooking, I need my "station" to be organised and clutter-free, and the overall space needs to feel inspiring. This applies more to post-production work or non-photography projects, not necessarily on-location shoots. For example, right now I'm working on a project printing cyanotypes on glass and mirrors. My home studio simply doesn't have the proper setup for this, making it very difficult to work in. I faced a similar challenge during the pandemic with my university lifecasting project. While I can always adapt to my surroundings, an ideal workspace definitely impacts my workflow and can slow things down.

What can be missing in that process?

Certain skills, I feel comfortable knowing that I might need to learn how to do a new technique, I like the challenge. In fact, with most new projects, the idea comes first visually. Then, during my research, I often realise I have absolutely no idea how to achieve it, and that's when I have to research the skillset.

What would you like to add in your future projects? 

Definitely exploring more mediums is on the agenda! Sculpture is next, and in the far future, I'd love to delve into performance art. Acting has always been my passion, so incorporating performative elements into my work sounds fascinating. Photography, however, will always be one of the main ones, I simply love incorporating it as a medium.

What’s upcoming?

My debut photobook, ‘Corpus’ has been a long time in the making. It's a deeply personal project that I'm hoping to publish or self-publish soon. There's even a chance I might expand on it with additional parts in the near future. While finalising ‘Corpus’ which was a profoundly emotional experience, I felt the need to turn the lens on myself in the same way I photographed the women in the project. It felt like a fair exchange and an opportunity for personal exploration. When I saw the self-portraits I had a strong reaction to them, and I realised I don't want to see them in that two dimensional form, I envisioned them printed on glass or mirrors, transforming them into a sculptural installation. This specific setting, I believe, will capture the gaze and create a captivating visual illusion. The project is ongoing, and after many trials and errors, I'm slowly bringing this vision to life.


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