#InfiniteEssence: Uche

#InfiniteEssence: “Uche”

 I recently set up my own studio here in Pittsburgh and it has given me so much more flexibility to explore with this series. Room to grow, to jump, to breathe- more. We are all breathing more with each of these shoots. I also just feel so blessed that my friend Uche traveled 8 hours by bus to be shot for the project and in this new space. I really have such amazing people in my life and it just doesn’t get any better when you have friends andddd your own studio to explore this work together. Thank you Uche! You’re wonderful and limitless❤️❤️❤️

My engineering background

I was recently asked how my Biomedical Engineering undergraduate degree impacts my photography work. This was my response ! :D

“For me, engineering is creativity. The two go hand-in-hand, and I structure my ideation - in tackling questions of identity visually - around the scientific method. I ask a question - do research - construct and test a hypothesis around the visual outcome - troubleshoot the procedure until the visual hypothesis works - and then analyze my results. This has been fundamental for my photography, including in working with communities and refining my approach along the way. In my latest project, I use ultraviolet frequencies of light to construct alternative lived realities for the black body. This came out of the same scientific method approach and creativity of my engineering schooling; including the fact that I had to build my ultraviolet equipment by hand, myself! There are so many things that you can do with an engineering degree that transcends the field itself, and it forms the base of a new way of seeing the world.” 
- Mikael Owunna, Biomedical Engineering, Duke ‘12 www.mikaelowunna.com

Here is a cool graphic on the scientific method, I found, too! https://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/science-fair/steps-of-the-scientific-method

#InfiniteEssence: Sam

#InfiniteEssence: “Sam”

Mikael [Photographer]: “Even when you said that you wanted to look masculine, I asked myself, “What does that mean?” Because I actually, for me, I want … I see particularly black masculinity as being a hypermasculinity, kind of puts us in a box. A really small box, and so what I actually wanted to do was also to push you, as a cis man, to be comfortable with tenderness with yourself. So if you’re tender with yourself, that will actually improve all the relationships around you in your life.”

Sam: “Do you think I accomplished that in any of those?”

Mikael: “I do think so! Yes, I think you did, a lot. I think you did a lot.”


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