I had a chance very recently to chat with the artist known as Laura Audebarn aka Laura Demonista when I mentioned her great exhibition of original work in the post about Katmee's Gallery. (it's not too late to join the contest there, by the way! Please check the rules out).
On that occasion, I mentioned also that there were other places where you have the chance to admire Laura's photography in world, one being Laura's own gallery at Xaara. . A themed exhibition aptly titled ...
Laura is never at loss for words and is a perennial source of quotables, so it was just natural for me to ask her more about it. Enjoy!
- What was your inspiration orchestrating (ha, see what i did there?) the photoset?
" I am actually quite a musical person and have often produced images to do with music, most often the piano or guitar. I had the idea for a set in mind a long time ago. I have my own gallery that I decided to use for complete series of work so I often have to come with ideas for a new series in order to fill it. And what better than an orchestra? So many instruments to choose from. The idea of the reflection came later though. I created the violin image with the reflection and thought it looked good enough to carry on the theme with the others."
- These photos were taken in a relatively short timespan, according to the dates on flickr. I am sure so many of our readers are marveled by your celerity as much as by the quality of the photos: how long did it take for you to do each photo? What is the biggest challenge in a photo for you, the pose, getting the right look for the set, the editing?
" As you know, I am like a machine. The idea for the picture comes to me and it has to be done right NOW! And once I decide on a series, its almost like a race to get it completed....but still trying to keep the quality high, of course. Usually, the idea for the next picture and the one after that is formed in my mind while still doing the first one. It's a continuous stream.
The average time for a picture is about one hour. From making the pose, building the set to the final processing and editing. I always try to do as much as possible within SL so I have little to do out of it. I really am not good at the photo editing stuff. That is my biggest challenge, generally speaking. Sometimes I envision a pose that is just too difficult to achieve in SL. Sometimes I want a scene that SL cannot manage. The challenge is often different but I still say the editing and processing is the hardest part for me."
- Do you have one favourite photo in the set? One that makes you go "Hmm! Maybe I am pretty good after all!" above any else, or just stands out in your memory for some reason, and tell us why.
" It is very hard for me to choose a favourite picture from a set. And when I do choose one, it usually changes within five minutes. My favourite two from this set, though, are Love Is Like A VIolin because there is so much emotion in the face and Pianissimo because its so gracefully beautiful...and I play the piano."
- If you have a raw version of it, I'd really enjoy if you could let me post it, and do a little before/after paragraph. Meaning you'd tell me a bit about your edit work, what you did to the photo, etc.
"As I said, I try to do as much as possible in SL. On this series, the refelctions were added later using GImp to create them. Most of the time, my work out of SL is smoothing edges, adjusting lights and sometimes softening the image. SL can be quite harsh at times"
- I already mentioned your display at Katmee's gallery. Now this. Am I missing other places where we can see inworld your artwork currently, and do you have already your next potential exhibit planned?
I also have a huge gallery at Austin, set in a fairy tale castle. And I sort of have it planned but I am uncertain. I have been doing a series of really charming non-erotic pictures that I think deserve to be seen. I am not sure if they should be seen in my gallery though. It is, after all, an erotic gallery."
A vintage G-String quartet pic by Laura. You'll find a different version of it in 'Orchestrated', of course!
- And finally, a look back at your previous exhibit, 'Borderline' : what were the results, and what sort of conclusion you draw from it, if any?
" I think I may have said that was really an experiment and I found it really interesting. The results were rather telling and a bit odd at times. It seems cum on the face is porn, cum on the bottom is erotic and cum on the breasts is both!
But the real conclusion, as shown by the votes I received, is that the line between porn and erotica is nowhere near as clear as many people thought. And I had people saying to me that they are less certain of what makes porn and what makes erotica now. Most pictures received equal votes for both porn and erotica.
I will let you draw your own conclusions from that. My conclusion is that porn is art :) "
And on that note, I think there's no better possible finale for this post. Thank you so very much to Laura for her kindess, and you are welcome to check out her in-world exhibits and Flickr stream, and give her feedback about her award-winning work!