I recently had the incredible opportunity of working with my wonderful and wildly talented friend, Tyler Lyons, and his partner on this project, Kyle Smith. The idea of color theory and how it's perceived is in essence Tyler's brain make up, so I felt incredibly honored to be a part of his creativity coming to life.
I was chosen to represent the color orange which at first seemed very foreign to me. I don't or didn't consider myself to embody the color. I studied different shades of orange and how they related to the world, to music, and to people. When I thought of orange, I thought of fire and energy and the sun. Orange is comprised of two very distinct colors -- yellow and red, but is unlike any other color in its make up.
There's a quote by Wassily Kandinsky that says, "Orange is red brought neared to humanity by yellow." Just think about that for a moment. What a depth of color red brings to the table but softened and made more relatable by yellow. I began to think, orange is absolutely my color because though I have burning fire and desire in me to create change and share and spread love there's also a softer side that helps me relate to humanity.
As we sat down to prepare for the shoot, the beauty, confidence, and complexity of orange stayed close to mind. Tyler, Kyle, and I discussed what themes I was bringing into the space that day and what music we could put along-side. As they photographed, the emotions poured out. I was thinking of all of the young women who I wanted to feel the freedom that I felt being orange and shining with confidence and love.
I've worked with Tyler many times before this shoot and there's always been a special connection between his eye behind that Canon lens and me. Something about our hearts were drawn together the moment we met. This particular shoot was no different but the depth of the connection was apparent and I believe speaks for itself in the final photographs.
Working with Kyle for the first time was an incredible pleasure as it seemed we had an immediate understanding of the relationship between us and the camera. Between his vulnerability in shooting me and our connection with the orange concepts, the energy came across in every shot.
My biggest take away in this work with two immeasurably talent humans was the ability to let go and allow the work to speak for itself. As an actor I am constantly studying and working the texts and music so that when I am in that place of performance, I can let all of that flow into my body and become closer to the character and myself. Likewise, doing this shoot allowed me to portray what I'd studied and developed about color with these two creatives.
After the shoot was finished, I felt exhausted because I'd given it all I had and thought the thing I'd been trying to say had finally been heard and captured. I look at these photos and try to retain the things I learned -- the freedom I experienced to give more and express to others. And the most beautiful part of the final product was the reflection of the woman they captured that I hadn't realized I'd become.
She is strong, she is vulnerable, she is proud of herself, and she is sharing freedom to help others grow. She is orange.