Only a Mother Would Know

May 8, 2017 2017年5月8日

The philosophy behind the works of Beijing-based photographer, Luo Yang is centered on the female gender. For Luo, the plethora of characteristics that women are able to embody is what makes them such a rich and intriguing subject matter. Over the past decade, her body of work has centered on the journey of girls growing up into women – capturing both the fragility and tenacity of women are what makes her images so humanizing. The life changes that her subjects undergo, such as the process of entering motherhood, inspired her latest photo series. “I was drawn to these women and their attempts in maintaining a balance between self-care and child rearing. It was a process that I appreciated greatly and found myself wanting to express. When I met Yu Mo and her son, I knew that their relationship would be central to this series. I want to continue capturing this relationship as both mother and son grow together. I hope this to be a long-term project which breaks all preconceived conceptions about ordinary human relationships.” Having more questions than answers after our talk with Luo Yang, we decided to chat with Yu Mo, the mother who modeled for this project, in an attempt to gain more insight into what this project means to her.


Neocha: What does this series of photographs mean to you? Why were you interested in participating in this project in the first place?

Yu Mo: Children are endlessly growing and developing. Each phase passes by so quick. If you miss it, it’s gone forever. I’m grateful that Luo Yang could record this period in our lives through this photo series, which I greatly treasure. I really enjoyed Luo Yang’s other female-related works. Her style is quite different from other photographers I’ve known, so I really wanted to try and work with her. Coincidentally, she had an idea to shoot a project related to children and childhood, so the stars aligned.

Neocha: 罗洋的这组照片对你的意义是什么?你为什么想参与这次合作?

玉墨: 孩子时时刻刻在成长,每个阶段过得都很快,如果错过就永远失去了,罗洋通过作品去记录下来这一刻,对我而言,非常宝贵。当时只是看了罗洋的女性作品,非常欣赏,和我身边的摄影师的风格不同,所以想尝试和她合作,正好她也希望能拍小孩主题的作品,所以一拍即合。

Neocha: How does your son feel about this photo shoot? What was his reaction to some of the photos afterward?

Yu Mo: He’s actually participated in his fair share of shoots already and didn’t feel like this project was any different. He reviewed every single photo quite seriously and told me which ones he liked. His favorites from this shoot are the ones where we’re cuddling and playing around. I don’t fully understand the standards he judges these photos on, but I assume it comes from a childhood innocence.

Neocha: 你的儿子是怎么看待这场拍摄的?他看过最终照片之后有什么评价?

玉墨: 其实他参与的拍摄挺多的了,不会觉得这次拍摄有啥特别。他很认真地看了每一张照片,并果断告诉我哪些是他喜欢的照片,他特别喜欢和我依偎在一起的和玩耍的照片。我不了解他评判的标准,应该更多是来自小孩的天性吧。

Neocha: It’s difficult to keep a young child calm. Can you share some of the interesting things that happened during the shoot?

Yu Mo: Seeing as how he’s been photographed a lot, he’s sort of experienced, so he doesn’t act unruly. I did tell him beforehand that this shoot would be in the nude. The funny thing is, the moment he took off his clothes in the room, he went wild and started horsing around. The removing of clothes was like a release of energy for him, something that unleashed his true and most natural self.

Neocha: 孩子都比较难控制,在拍摄过程中有因此发生什么有趣的事吗?

玉墨: 他拍得比较多了,可以说已经玩得蛮有经验了吧,所以还挺好控制的。事先有告诉他这次拍不穿衣服的照片,有趣的事是他脱完衣服就开始在房间疯玩,像是放开了天性、精力充沛。

Neocha: What are your thoughts on nude photography? What does it represent to you? If you weren’t nude in the shoot, how would it alter the meaning behind this series?

Yu Mo: As a model, I feel like it’s important to work with the photographer on their envisioned theme and message. Of course, during the process, the model can express their own thoughts and suggestions to the photographer. Being nude or not isn’t important. The most important part is fully conveying the feelings and themes that the photographer is after. Whether you’re clothed or nude, you can still produce great photography. In the end, it’s about what you’re trying to convey.

Neocha: 对于全裸体的拍摄你有什么看法?它代表了什么?如果拍摄是穿衣服的,正系列的意义会是跟裸体不一样么?

玉墨: 我觉得作为模特,主要是配合摄影师的主题和表达,当然,在具体呈现中可以提出自己的感受給摄影师参考。裸不裸不是主要的,关键是能不能体现摄影师的需要表达的情感,主题。穿衣服和裸体一样可以有好的照片,关键看你想表达什么。

Neocha: Have your friends or family seen these photos? What were their reactions?

Yu Mo: My family hasn’t seen them, but many of my friends have. Some people like them, some have said I’m brave, and some don’t approve. It’s definitely controversial, but I’m unaffected by outside opinion, I only look to myself. I think this project was quite a natural and realistic depiction of my son and I. What parents haven’t been in a circumstance where they’re unclothed in the same room with their offspring?

Neocha: 你身边的亲朋有看过这组照片吗?他们又会对这组照片有什么看法?

玉墨: 亲戚家人没有看过,朋友当中有很多关注. 有赞赏,也有惊叹我大胆的,也有不认可,争议肯定是有的,但我不会受外界干扰,还是比较属于自我的。而且我觉得我们作品表现得很现实,很自然。哪对父母没有在孩子的小时候和他们赤诚相待过?

Instagram: @luoyangphoto


Contributor: Sonic Yuan


Instagram: @luoyangphoto


供稿人: Sonic Yuan


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