Interview with Maggie Harrsen
You only need to look over Maggie Harrsen’s images to get an idea of what kind of person she is. They’re beautiful, unpretentious, rich in emotion and sense of escape. Having just embarked on a new photographic project entitled ‘daybook‘, I got to have a few words with Maggie about her work which you can read below. Enjoy!
Hey Maggie! I am interested in where you grew up!?
In Bucks County, Pennsylvania – serene land with rivers, vast vegetation, animals, and an abundance of freedom to explore.
Tell us about your new project ‘daybook’ and the reasons on why you were wanting to separate this work.
daybook is a white space to create a flow of energy. A space to share my pictures and words in a more intimate way. To connect from day to day, creating a oneness with people who may otherwise be separated geographically. A place, above all, to reflect on the environment and mother earth.
Tell us about the process of leaving the city for the beach and what influences that has on your work.
It happened very organically to be honest, sort of following an intuition. I have always been in love with the sea – the movement, the tide, reflecting the flow of life and its impermanence. To me the coast resonates a deep love and simplicity. The ocean and the lifestyle of living near water influence me greatly, everyday the environment is expressing itself. The rhythm of life is very peaceful and my senses can be fully open. I believe it is the merging of my senses with my environment that affect me most.
There was one morning I woke very early, a day in June around the summer solstice, the sun radiant and with this light came the sound of rustling. It was a fawn grazing just a foot from my door. Moments like this one take place often here, this is what moves me. My photograph of the fawn (above) is one in a series of images I worked on this past summer named KANOA, a boys given name in Hawaiian meaning ‘the free one’. I will organize these pictures into a book this year.
I love the way your images embody a sense of freedom and escape. Can you tell us about this recent phrase on your tumblr ‘see sun, rain, earth, air, and love come together’ .
Thank you, these words are an expression of the interconnection between elements in nature. An idea that a living being can only be with the help of other living beings, all supporting each other, all equally essential. For example, a vegetable comes to be through the sun, rain, earth, air and love coming together. This is true for all living things, you and I too. My sensitivity is great towards the environment and emotions. I am individually aware and I try to capture this connection as a way to observe, study, reflect, and ultimately transport the viewer.
What cameras do you like to use every day?
I always use my Hasselblad.
What exciting new projects are happening for you this year?
I have started working on commissioned assignments, many of which will come out this Spring 2012. I really enjoy this type of project and the creative collaboration it involves.
On a more personal note, I head to Australia next month. Traveling and exploring is a great inspiration for me and I will surely work on a series of images here and a film too. These days I am following no set path. With this, my projects seem to take form naturally through the environments I experience and people I encounter.
Thank you Maggie!! xx
See more of Maggie Harrsen’s work here.
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