Kirsty Mitchell is a British Photographer, who created a small summer project back in 2009, as it was her way of coping with the grief of her mothers death. What started as a distraction from the pain of reality, led to a dramatic five year adventure that would change Kirsty Mitchell’s entire life.
Kirsty Mitchell named her project Wonderland, I do not want to sound extreme, however viewing Mitchell’s photos take me to another world. Mitchell explains the theme behind these fairytale images are her desire “to convey the fact that this would be a place where anything could happen. The notion of a girl’s escapism through stories.” Well executed, Wonderland is a fantasy with elaborate costumes and expressive colours.
Kirsty Mitchell goes to great lengths to achieve the look and scene she envisions for each photo, scouting out the perfect location. Some scenes required a twelve month wait to capture the blooming seasonal flowers that are then around only for a two week period. The characters are make believe, although the location’s natural scenery is not. The strong use of colour in the Wonderland series was one of the most important factors as Mitchell states, “it (colour) can transport our mood and emotions to a better place and this was my intention.” Colour within photography has always been something that I have included in my work, as I find it so aesthetically pleasing. Wonderland has given me inspiration and ideas that I will be using in my Final Major Project.
Mitchell just keeps getting better and better, from the ground up with no formal photographic training and no budget to begin with. Working full time as a fashion designer, Mitchell started the Wonderland series out of scraps. “We made things out of old bits of wire, stolen flowers from parks, and anything we could find. Some of the dresses the models wear are just fabric I pinned around them on the location!” Mitchell is now obviously able to devote all time and effort into the extravagant costume designs entirely hand made by her. Mitchell has inspired me to create my own props, I have already planned to make an Autumnal crown out of leaves, for my Autumn shoot. I think by using props, created by myself, makes the images extra special and shows my drive and dedication to do well throughout this project.
Kirsty Mitchell, the extraordinary photographer has been my main inspiration for this project, but will continue to inspire me in the future. Her work takes my breath away, as does her path to all of her great accomplishments that she has achieved in life so far. I think Kirsty Mitchell will go on to create bigger and better things and continue to astound us with her amazing work.