Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Collaboration Feature: Madeline and Raven

Perhaps it's for the best that photographer Madeline Barger and writer Raven Bleskie aren't neighbors.  "Ahhhh Madeline." says Raven, "In real life, if I lived closer to her,  I would be that creepy guy lurking outside of her window rain or shine."

Raven, who grew up in Saltspring Island, BC, currently lives in Victoria, BC, a safe distance from Long Beach, California, where Madeline has lived her entire life.  

When asked about growing up in BC, Raven expressed the incredibly relatable feeling of hometown blues, "My location has always been a struggle. I've never lived anywhere else other than Saltspring, and I've never really liked living in the middle of nowhere, but compared to others, where I grew up was literally an island paradise. I just became so jaded to the beauty of it because it wasn't where I wanted to be."

Art, however, provides a great escape, "The thing I love about Madeline's photography is that you can really feel the emotions that she traps in her lens." explains Raven.  "There's pictures on her Flickr where her and Steven (Madeline's frequent photo subject) went to the aquarium, and they make me want to go to the aquarium. But at the same time, I feel like I was at the aquarium with them. I feel like I was at the Rose Bowl, I feel like I went to the Zoo."

Madeline echoed this sentiment when asked about Raven's work, "I love Raven's writing because it's so honest and beautiful. She has a way of making me feel the same way she does through her words."

Raven also loves the sense of youth that permeates through Madeline's work.  The feeling you get when looking through her photos is "like it's the last week of summer and you never want it to end. Maybe it's just because of her location, but her (photos) always feel like it's those late August days when you were younger and things were so much easier."

Madeline agrees that Long Beach has shaped the look of her photography, "Southern California is constantly sunny, so I love using a lot of sun and natural light in my pictures. I'm also lucky enough to live very close to the ocean, which is inspiring in itself. The weather is usually pretty perfect, and allows me to shoot whenever I want! It's great."

Raven points out that location, however, is occasionally irrelevant, "To me, home is a person, not a place. Home is the feeling you get when you run to them at the ferry terminal or airport after not seeing them for months after months. How you don't care what you're doing as long as you're with them. The feeling you get on Christmas morning every moment you're around them." 

Looking through Madeline's photos, you can get the sense that she feels exactly the same way: wherever you are only has the power you give it, and any moment in life can be beautiful, especially with the right people.

A collaboration, then, makes perfect sense for two minds that seem to effortlessly connect, "I had never written with another person's face in mind, but when Madeline showed me that picture of Steven driving, I think we both knew that it would work perfectly with the little piece that I had sent her of what I had in mind." says Raven

Check out Madeline and Raven's collaboration in the first issue of Tilde Journal, currently available for pre-order

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for the feature! I'm still gushing over what Raven said :3