Elisa Flowers Plays with Paper Dolls
Photographer GL Wood likes to play, especially with convention. Most notably, perhaps, GL's vision has captured Nicki Minaj, whose legs were extended across her cover art for Pink Friday, and in countless magazines. It is exaggerations like this that allow him to give an impression of the world that is beyond what we see with just our eyes, presenting a different glass we can take on and shape our experiences.
In his latest project, Paper Dolls, GL Wood examines the newest Fall / Winter 2015 looks in Women's fashion with the help of makeup artist Elisa Flowers. The experience is playful; the final presentation shows real collages of pieces from Balenciaga, Balmain, Alexander McQueen, Valentino, and many more on top of a single model, as if she were a paper doll. It is an examination of how the viewer of a magazine sees themselves in the fashions off the page. The model poses playfully, and exaggeratedly, showing off the inherent humor of the shoot. She reminds us that in some ways, this is a game. Blue and green eyeshadows and a bold red lip are reminiscent of the painted on colors of dolls freshly removed from their packages. With her tongue placed firmly inside a well rouged cheek, we are given the opportunity for a laugh, gazing upon fashion that is normally so out of reach but has suddenly been made immediately accessible.
It is the game that disarms the viewer, the whimsy that reminds us that this is here for us. It allows us to enjoy the experience, even if we'll never have the clothes beyond playing with them as paper dolls. The editorial is in the August issue of Life Style, a Chinese magazine with an obvious eye towards fashion.