Tag Archives: fine art

Focusing on Art!

It has been a crazy spring and summer, and I have been both overwhelmed and underwhelmed by all that has been going on.  I have been working on more of the Female Archetype Project which will be soon transforming into the Human Archetype Project as I begin to incorporate male archetypes.  I have been feeling pulled in a million directions while trying to do research for the book writing aspect of the project, focus on my own spiritual journey, pay bills, work with clients and all of the million day-to-day things which come up constantly.  Mind you, I’m not complaining, being busy is a good thing… But it has also caused me to reassess my life, my goals and my focus.

Bearing in mind that I love working with my clients, creating art with and for them, I have decided that I will be severely limiting the commissions I take on going forward.  I will no longer be creating more standard portraiture, but will be only taking on commissions that go along with my painterly style.  I will only be taking 6 more portrait commissions this year and only 12 a year hereafter.  I will still be taking business and actors headshots and taking occasional model development sessions, as they do not take the same amount of creative energy in post-processing and act as a left-brain balance to my personal work.

So, that being said, if you are interested in commissioning a portrait, now is the time to start the process! Email info@artanddiscord.com or use the form on the Contact page to get in touch and we can start planning!

And, to wrap up this blog post, here’s some eye-candy… One of my recent additions to the Archetype Project: “Great Mother, Babalon” with beautiful Aepril Schaile.  I have two more images I am working on for this trilogy and I can’t wait to be able to share them all soon!





Posted in Female Archetype Project, Fine Art, Inspiration, Photography, Uncategorized Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy International Women’s Day!

      Today is International Women’s Day, which intends to bring awareness to the oppression and inequality of women globally.  Personally, I think it is insane that in a world which is so advanced in so many ways, that antiquated belief systems which support the idea that any human being is lesser than any other still exist.

      As women especially,  it is important that we support each other, and help lift each other up.  It is always my greatest joy to create images which show the immense variety of beauty that exists in the universe, and some of my favorite sessions are portraits that reveals both inner and outer beauty for a woman to see in herself.  Celebrate and share yourself, your inner and outer beauty, for all the world to see.

You are amazing and you deserve for everyone to see it.


Posted in Beauty, Fine Art, Inspiration, Photography, Portrait Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , |

A New Project and a Trip to Oregon!

So, it just occurred to me that we are already in the fourth month of 2014 and unfortunately I have been seriously neglecting my blog posting for the year, as this is my first post!   I will be better about posting going forward and can’t wait to share the work I’ve been doing as well as the amazing projects I’ve got lined up for the next couple of months!

I hope the year has been good to you thus far and that you are excited about the Spring, I know I have been seriously jonesing for this warm weather to arrive since my trip to Oregon at the end of February and I’m excited that the temperature is finally where it was while we were on the west coast!  We went out to Portland to visit some friends who moved there a few years ago who we’ve been promising to visit literally since they moved.  Jae did a bit of a guest spot at our friends Joe and Dominic’s tattoo studio, Dead Gods Tattoo and I planned a few photo shoots while we were out there so I could get a chance to work with some new faces on the west coast.

Now, I should go back a bit in time and explain how and why I organized the shoots that I did while I was in Portland…

In January, I decided that I really need to give myself a personal project for the year to allow myself to explore some creative concepts in the midst of the fashion, beauty and portraiture that I usually focus on, and I really wanted to work on getting a cohesive body of fine art work together.  I have a tendency to wander in my interests photographically, which allows me to explore a lot of outlets and ideas, but makes for a strange assortment of work in my portfolio.  I spent a few weeks pondering what makes me happy when creating fine art images and what concepts I fall back on again and again that I have a passion for creating.  I realized that my favorite images have a few things in common, which I should concentrate on: they have a painterly feel, they are inspired by classical paintings in lighting and posing- especially work created during the Italian Renaissance and the Dutch Golden Age, and they have a fantastical or supernatural subject matter.  Using these three ideas to focus my project, I finally decided on: The Female Archetype Project.  This project will explore female archetypes using images depicting mythological female characters throughout the world.  I am really excited to be able to revisit some of my studies from college comparing religions and various mythologies, comparing ideas and finding the concepts which seem to be universal.  My hope is to be able to put a book together with all the images as well as some explanations of the archetypes, sharing the research I’ll be doing into these concepts!


Now, back to Oregon!  

So, in preparation for my trip, I put out a casting call on Model Mayhem in hopes of finding a model or two I would be able to work with while I was out there.  Because I would be planning from across the country and had no contacts in the modeling world in Oregon, I figured it would be my best bet to plan to work on the Female Archetype Project while I was there, vs attempting to find a full team of hair/makeup/wardrobe for a fashion-based concept. After going back and forth with a few different models, I settled on three who were interested in creating some mythological figures, had great work in their portfolios already and were available on the day I would have a vehicle and would be able to drive to locations.  We started throwing around goddess ideas and decided on Oonagh, Queen of the Fairies (or Queen Mab or Titania) for Alley, Persephone for Mary and finally Morrigan for Shawna.  Because they were all from the Vancouver, WA area I decided that the hour-long drive to them made the most sense, since they were far more familiar with that area than the Portland area.

I was lucky that my friend Erica Templeman was interested in creating a dress for Oonagh because she loved the concept, and she made a gorgeous piece that really made the images perfect!  She also amazingly created the entire dress from entirely thrifted elements!!  I also made a couple of flower wreath headpieces to go with the concept, which brought the wardrobe together!  Mary and Shawna brought their own wardrobe and props and really went all out!  I was lucky that they were so passionate about their concepts and were dedicated to putting together the perfect pieces for their goddess characters.  Alley also found a hair stylist/ makeup artist to assist us with her slightly more complicated look, and it rounded out the team quite nicely.

I started the day meeting Alley at her place in Vancouver and getting her into her wardrobe after she had been getting her hair and makeup done for a couple hours.  I unfortunately got lost on the way and ended up being 30 minutes late, which did actually work out because they were just finishing up hair and makeup when I arrived.  We got Alley into her dress, jumped into the car and headed to the first location, a beautiful huge tree in the middle of a field.  We took some great photos of the dress (before we got it dirty) and makeup, as well as exploring a few ideas about what a fairy queen might be doing in a field.  We had a quick makeup change and headed to our second location, which was an amazingly beautiful forest down the road. The trees were HUGE and everything was green- covered in moss and lichen, a truly magical little world.  We tromped through the woods looking for the perfect setting for our queen and Alley led us to a beautiful tree which had fallen over, revealing the root system, which made a lovely throne.  With rain constantly threatening, we set up the lighting, and started shooting to get as much material to work with for composites, exploring different poses and positions.  We worked fairly quickly and got what we needed in about 30 minutes, which was amazing!

After dropping Alley back off, Jae and I headed to another location on the other side of Vancouver; a beautiful state forest abutting a lake.  As we waited for Mary and Shawna to arrive, it started pouring out.  I was determined that we would not call of the shoot, as long as the rain lightened up a little bit, we’d be able to stay and work through both concepts.  We did a bit of recon to see where on the main path would have the most coverage from the rain and also had interesting features and found a few places that I could see us working from.  Shawna and Mary arrived a little bit later and started getting into their wardrobe and makeup.  With everyone set to go, I loaded up on plastic trash bags to cover my lights and camera if necessary, grabbed our umbrellas and props and headed into the woods. It was definitely a tricky situation shooting in the rain, also having to move aside for the dozen or so people who passed us on the path while we were working.  But, we got both Shawna and Mary’s concepts completed and none of the equipment got wet!


Here are final images from all three shoots!




and the image created for the Female Archetype Project




And the image for the Female Archetype Project


And Finally, Shawna: 




Thank you to everyone who was involved in making these amazing images: Alley Blom, Mary Ward, Shawna Colton, Brittany Nowers, and Erica Templeman as well as Joe for letting Jae and I crash at his place, and his lovely other half Jen who let us borrow her car, and of course my husband Jae who was my chauffeur and voice-activated light stand for the day!

Posted in Female Archetype Project, Fine Art Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , |

Amanda’s Dark Art Portrait Session

A few days before Halloween, I had the pleasure and privilege to photograph a portrait session of a young mother and wife who wanted to treat herself to a session for her birthday.  She told me during our consultation that she loved creepy things, halloween and Rob Zombie…. my first thought was, “YES!!!”  My creative tendencies lie in the direction of dark imagery to begin with, and being able to create art like that for a woman who not only appreciates the art, but wants to be a part of the image is my dream!  We decided to work within a few different concepts, and created a broad variety of image styles.  Here are a few of my favorites from the session!









Hair and Make Up was created by Lyndsay Simon, of Makeup By Lyndsay, I created the outfit in the last two images, as well as the train on the black dress in the top two images.  The autumnal headpiece was created by me for my Discord Industries Etsy shop.

Posted in Fine Art, Photography, Portrait, Wardrobe Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , |

Black Friday through Cyber Monday Promotion!

I just want to let you all know how much I truly appreciate your support!  It means so much to me that I have people who are interested in my art and are enthusiastic about the pieces that I create… I love being able to share my creativity and passion with you all!  To show just how much I appreciate you guys, I am offering a promotion from Friday Nov 29th through Monday Dec 2nd on my Etsy page: www.etsy.com/shop/ArtandDiscordStudios and enter BLACK25 during checkout to save 25% off any print purchase.   I’m also offering the discount for prepaid session or print vouchers, just use the CONTACT page to send me a message about what you are looking for and I’ll get you all set up!  Hope you had a fantastic Thanksgiving and enjoy the Holiday Season!


Posted in Fine Art, Photography, Portrait, Products Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , |

Portraits with Rachel Dashae

I had the opportunity to work with Rachel a few years ago during the annual SOPHA Location Lighting Course, and she was such a brilliant and sweet model to work with.  This year when I saw that she was traveling to the New England area, I knew I was going to have to find a way to work with her again.

After getting in touch and finding out that she had some availability left in her schedule, we were able to confirm a date, and I had to start brainstorming what the heck I was going to shoot with this lovely girl!  I started off with the idea that I would try to include her in the “Sainted” series that I started last year with Ramagious, but as the day got closer and the weather looked like it was going to be gloomy (which was not really what I would need to match the brilliance of the light from the first “Sainted” shots), I had to come up with a Plan B.

Plan B ended up being a crazy headpiece built from some curly reeds I had picked up a year or so ago which had been sitting around my crafting room gathering dust, raffia I picked up at the craft store, bronze antiquing wax, potpourri balls, spanish moss and tiny LED lights on a wire.  After I built the headpiece (which took about 5 hours total over 2 days), It was time to put together an appropriate set.  I had decided we were going with more of an “earth mother” scene, so I took a random beige textured sheer drape (picked up a while back in the clearance section at Target) and a couple strips of Burlap (from a roll I discovered in my crafting room– no idea where it came from) draped them over my evergreen v-flats and created a very earthy looking backdrop.  I dragged my vintage steam trunk over, draped it with a fluffy blanket and some pillows and covered it with a faux fur throw and had a nice little seat for Rachel to pose on.  Finally I draped some black felt on the floor to cover up the light colored wood floor, and threw some raffia, spanish moss reed balls and faux flowers around so it had some texture and interesting details that I could pull out if I wanted.

Theresa Wall Duggan- Earth Mother Headpiece

The Headpiece I created for the Shoot.a very terrible iPhone photo of the set.

2013-06-11 19.40.09

A very terrible iPhone photo I took of the set!

Rachel and I shot for 2 hours and other than a brief stint out in the rain to try out one of my original ideas (as seen in the last image), we spent most of the time shooting on this set and created so many beautiful images.  Here are some of my favorites from the shoot:

Theresa Wall Duggan- Firefly Queen

Firefly Queen






Posted in Fine Art, Photography, Portrait Also tagged , , , , , , , , |

Raeah’s Fight

At the end of March, I was contacted by my friend Sarah Montani, who had a friend in need of a special portrait shoot. Her friend, Raeah has been battling brain tumors for the past 10 years and is about to undergo a radical double mastectomy and wanted to have a “before” shoot prior to this radical, life saving surgery. Here is her story in her own words:

“What lies behind us, and what lies before us, are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” -RWE

The last 8 years of my life have been an unimaginable marathon. I am proud to say I am finally approaching the finish line (fingers crossed!). In 2006 I was diagnosed with my first of 3 pituitary brain tumors. After losing peripheral ranges in my vision gradually and ultimately losing it completely (during a migraine) were the tumors discovered. From then on it was clear that there were many mountains ahead and the road was long. To protect my privacy I wont go into details but it was hell on multiple fronts. I am glad to look back on it. I was Brain tumor free for 2 years where my days were full, happy & simply beautiful.

As of August 2012 I am no longer brain tumor free. Due to a continuous side affect of the tumor, I am currently under going a double radical mastectomy at the DFCI/BWH here in Boston.

I never could imagine the lessons id learn about the truth behind beauty. They are embedded forever. It truly is connection and happiness that we create through one an other. The memories, the laughter. That full feeling that keeps us keeping on. Experiences and how we learn from them is beautiful. That in its self allows us to a fuller spirit in the days a head. Breasts or no breasts- Id rather posses the ability to see beauty in the gifts around me.

Here are some of my favorite shots from our session.

Raeah  is Tuff Enough to Beat it Again

Raeah II

Raeah Flower

Raeah Scars

Makeup artist Erin Driscoll, of Killer Instinct Hair and Makeup did an amazing job on the makeup for this session!  Check out her work online to see some other beautiful looks that she has done!

Posted in Fine Art, Photography, Portrait Also tagged , , , , , , |

Happy Halloween! Revisiting a Corpse Bride shoot from last year.

Posting a bit late this week, due to Hurricane Sandy… we were lucky to not lose our power during the storm, but didn’t have internet for two days… all in all, not so bad, compared to all the devastation that happened up the coast.  My thoughts are with friends and family who are dealing with the aftermath of the storm, who were much more effected than we were up here.

I figured for today’s post I’d revisit a shoot I did in 2011, when I just started working with the lovely ladies Erin Driscoll (aka Ramagious) and Celsa Cutillo (aka Jayne Riot, of Variant Shades Makeup).  We came up with a Corpse Bride concept for a shoot, and after some weeks of planning, we got together and created some really fun, creepy images.  I am pretty sure that the best part of the afternoon was loading the 3 of us, plus Erin’s gigantic skirts (provided by Sisters of the Moon Designs) into my tiny little Yaris– we got quite a few looks from the locals as we were driving through town, with Erin’s crazy wig, white face paint, and white contacts,  which was almost as entertaining as the looks we got from the folks that were at the pond we shot at, curious about what three strange girls were doing in the woods. We also shot in studio, so the images have a different feel, despite the identical look of the model.

Here are a few of the studio shots:



and from the pond:



One of my favorite parts of the day, however, was the shoot we did when we got back from the pond- inspired by a conversation we had on the drive home… we were talking about shooting some concepts involving a skull at some point in the future- and when we got back to my apartment, Erin saw the donkey skull we have hanging on the wall, grabbed it and we did a quick little mini-shoot before everyone had to go home.  To date, the images we created are some of my favorite in my portfolio.  I learned that day, that you never know where your inspiration will come from, and you should try to work with whatever ideas come to you, because you never know what will work and what beauty you can create with just a few minutes and a crazy idea.


Here is my favorite shot… definitely the direction I want my fine art work to go in, and hopefully I will have the chance to create more like it in the near future!

Through the Eye of the Dead

Through the Eye of the Dead

Posted in Fine Art, Photography Also tagged , , , , , , , , |