“My mind and soul are filled with a lot of things- I'm not sure how to accurately describe what's going on inside me.”
A.J. Coley sees his images as a reflection of the ideas, dreams, and experiences that fill his head from day to day. He uses himself as model as a translation of his conceptual ideas and as a way to present those inner thoughts out into the world.
“There's a purpose for why I'm shooting a particular photo- to share an experience, evoke an emotion, or have the viewer question the motive,” says A.J. “Sometimes I plan extensively and other times I shoot on a whim, but it always reflects my thoughts and subconscious.”
A.J. is a twenty year-old fine art photographer from Washington, D.C. who developed an interest in photography in high school. Inspired by his art teachers, and the freedom to shoot as part of his studies, A.J. began exploring photography by setting up strobes in the darkroom, and shoot photos of fruit splashing into an aquarium during the lunch hour. “My art teacher encouraged my experiments and was always willing to help however he could,” remembers A.J. “He even borrowed the aquarium from the science department just so I could drop things into it.”
After high school, A.J. continued to pursue photography. At 20, he is seeing a photographic style developing that he says he can call his own. He is emerging as a creative artist. “It's still a work in progress, but I'm slowly getting to where I want to be!”
A.J. says he plans to further explore his burgeoning style and develop more interesting concepts. “I currently keep a dream journal for inspiration and want to translate more dreams into photographs in the future. Also, I plan travel more often and eventually hold my first gallery show.”
A.J. is emerging as a creative work in progress.
Dressed for Distress
A Surreal Seascape
Self portrait: July 2013