BACKGROUND OF THIS PHOTO SERIES
From attending St. Edward’s University, my desire to learn about other cultures has grown so much. St. Ed’s is one of those universities that puts a heavy emphasis on study abroad and being a welcoming environment for students all around the world. I met people from Pakistan, South Korea, Columbia, etc, etc. I think it’s critical to learn about other cultures in order to broaden one’s viewpoints and perspectives in order to see the entire picture. Since I’ve graduated, I’ve still wanted to learn about the world around me. This is why I went about creating a collaborative project with models, photographers, and hair and make-up artists in the Austin area. The concept was to gather a group of women of varying ethnicities and cultural backgrounds in order for them to portray warriors from their home countries. I wanted the girls to tap into their inner strength but to also connect with their heritage. I reached out on Facebook in a Model and Photographer group to see who would be interested in working together. I had a huge response of people wanting to work on this project! I looked at individual portfolios and asked about cultures and heritage. One of the most important parts of this project is that I wanted to capture a wide range of cultures. In the end, I created two teams that shot on two different dates in two different locations. I loved getting to meet all these creatives and work with them! It was so much fun to see how other photographers worked; we all ended up with completely different work which was the best part!
I’ve always found Greek mythology to be interesting; the stories that were passed down and what an entire civilization believed was interesting. Being from Italian descent, Danielle jumped on board with portraying a mighty supernatural warrior. In Roman mythology - which was predominant in Italy - Minerva is the goddess of warfare. In order to make things simple - because who really thinks of Roman mythology over Greek mythology - we decided to use Athena as her inspiration. Athena is the goddess of wisdom, warfare, and strategy. The story of Athena starts with her birth where she sprung from Zeus's head. Literally came from his head all grown up and with her armor on. She's a protector, but if you rub her the wrong way, then she's going to be angry. In the Odyssey by Homer, Odysseus is wondering across the seas by Athena because he destroyed one her temples during the Trojan war. Even though she is the reason why he wasn't able to return home immediately, she did help him out on his journey. Danielle had to look equally elegant and strong to portray Athena. Wearing a classic toga, tied sandals, and elegant jewelry, Danielle pulled off a great Athena!
Co-Photographer Team #1: Winter Kane
Co-Photographer Team #1: Maddie B.
MUA Team #1 and Team #2: Estelle Thomas and Delaney Rubenstein
Model Team #1 - Indonesian Warrior: Macia Rondonuwu
Model Team #1 - Mother Warrior: Anastacia Sterling
Model Team #1 - Scottish Warrior: Abbie Nevins
Co-Photographer Team #2: Gabe Vasquez
Co-Photographer Team #3: Louie Ayuma
Model Team #2 - Mexican, Thai and Colombian Warrior: Cathy Garcia
Model Team #2 - Athena: Danielle Poe
Model Team #2 - Irish Warrior: London Beal
Model Team #2 - Filipino Warrior: Vicky Mescher
Costume Designer for Athena, Filipino Warrior, and Thai and Columbian Warrior: Courtney King of Bewitching Dames