Jackson & Lucas, 2009
Camille & Cricket
My project, Liminal Portraits, are portraits of young teens using video chat. These portraits, taken remotely by me with a group of teens over the course of several video sessions, serves to explore ideas of portraiture in the context of this media, especially as it relates to issues of identity and privacy.
There is a strange effect of video chatting – besides seeing your chat partner, you also see yourself talking into the camera – it's like talking into a mirror. This seems especially relevant during the transitional time of adolescence, when teens are experimenting with and forming their identity, often using their peer groups as venues to try on and test out various identities. And the medium itself becomes a venue where they happily plug in daily to see and be seen, to present different looks, different styles, changing attitudes.
I view these images as a new form of portraiture which explores this idea of the virtual self, which, like my adolescent subject, is liminal – and constantly changing.