The purpose for this platform:
- To celebrate the diversity in the human spirit!
- Create an environment where this diversity can come together to share experiences, create new meaningful experiences, and grow!
- Develop a platform promoting self expression, self acceptance, and creative fulfillment!
My Journey GREY JOHNSON:
I started as a figurative artist and studied at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) in 2013. I began my journey as a photographer in February 2016 and mentored under “Risen Phoenix” a prominent Minneapolis area Fine Art Photographer. I then completed my first solo shoot in December of that same year after moving to Washington, DC and the rest is history! Since then I have had the opportunity to meet and work with several wonderful models, photographers, performers and all types of artist along the way!
My philosophy as an artist; I am a minimalist at heart and believe that you only need a few key elements (the subject, light/ shadow, and composition) to create a meaningful and impactful image! My work focuses on the authenticity, emotion, and rawness of the subject in that particular moment in time. Women are the preferred subjects of my work in that they convey the widest range of depth and emotion. I intentionally leave in perceived societal flaws such as cellulite, belly rolls, and stretch marks. The intent is to show that there is a tangible human being in front of you with enough courage to bare the beauty of their soul without fear, shame, or repercussion! I work with subjects of all body types, ages, and abilities showing the diversity of beauty seen in the real world!
My personal philosophy; Be respectful of others but do not actively seek anyone’s approval, acceptance or permission. Doing so can bind you, and hold you back from progressing and meeting your own defined goals. I believe that in a room full of influencers it is fine to acknowledge everyone for who they are, and what they have the ability to bring to the table, as long as you acknowledge your own expertise and what you bring to the table as well! Know the guidelines and allow your heart to take you the rest of the way. If you can not understand how to fulfill your own desire’s you can not expect others to know how to do it for you.
Why do you create:
Over the years I had been influenced by several different artists some classical and some contemporary. However, it has been the figure models that I drew, sketched and sculpted in my classes at MCAD that inspired me the most! The models in those classes came in different body types, ages and ethnicities. While drawing them I appreciated their boldness to pose, their perceived vulnerability in that moment, and of course the beauty of their form. Eventually I realized that outside of that environment I rarely saw that diverse representation reflected in other forms of media including contemporary nude art. This lack of representation prompted me to create and add an additional chapter to this overarching body of work!
Some of my main influences have been classical Greco-Roman Sculpture, French Impressionist Edgar Degas, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, or sculptor Auguste Rodin. More modern influences include Leroy Neiman’s Femlin (Playboy), Photographers Helmut Newton, Peter Lindbergh, and Ruth Bernhard. I am also influenced by and strive to contribute to today’s body positive, and sex positive movements!
Why you feel it is important to have diversity represented in all types of media:
It is important to have diverse, accurate and positive representation in all media forms because it allows one to see themselves in a relatable fashion. Having the ability to see yourself portrayed accurately is liberating, comforting, and fosters empowerment!
What is your legacy:
I believe the world already has enough assholes, so ultimately I want my legacy to be that of being a wonderful human with the ability to be considerate, love, and express myself freely! As an artist I want my body of work to help shape and change the perspective of what it means to find beauty, happiness, and self love!
Where can we follow your journey:
Print Media: THE NAKED ARCHIVE (Coming Soon!)