Student art ‘outlet’ becoming a career
Every little boy and girl needs an outlet where they can feel free to express themselves and what they enjoy. This may be a sport or a hobby, and if they’re lucky and devoted enough, that outlet could become a career.
Taylor Crosthwaite, a 20-year-old Photographic Imaging student at LCC, was just a kid with an outlet at first. She turned to art, and later photography, to help ease the pressure of growing up and to express her feelings.
“The world can be a not-great place, but when I have my camera or pencil in hand, I’m capable of being in my own element; my own world,” Crosthwaite said.
Fortunately, even through the darkest of times, like a pandemic, forcing people to stay away from each other, she still has her art and her passion.
“I lost a good amount of muse for photography, whether that had to do with lack of models or just general depression from not being able to do much,” she said. “Slowly, I’m regaining it as classes start up. It’s still quite a struggle.”
Crosthwaite said she hopes to finish her degree in Photographic Imaging and then take more courses in DMAC (video) and business in order to confidently work as a freelancer. She wants to move to Chicago in the future and develop her own photography business with her own style.
“I mainly center my work around portraits, and that’s what I plan to continue doing,” she said. “But lately, I’ve been doing a lot of shooting for subjects that lean toward the alternative side. Photographing different subcultures has consistently been something I’m more comfortable with doing; just something I click with.
“Growing up, I definitely found inspiration from the artist Jamie Hewlett, particularly the type of subjects he enjoyed portraying in his art. Later on, I’ve found inspiration in the photographical works of Gavin Watson and Anita Corbin.
“Their ability to capture such emotion within candid shots has always caught my eye. I realize that I seem to be following in their footsteps the more that I stare at my work,” Crosthwaite said.
Crosthwaite also has found that music is a big influence on her art and photography, most notably alternative music from 2012 to 2015 and the ‘80s. Crosthwaite said this type of music is the main focus and vibe she wants to give off with her subjects.
Crosthwaite has been fortunate enough to have photographed one such musical artist who loves the alternative style as well: singer Alix Mercer, known also by her stage name Dead Witxh.
Mercer and Crosthwaite have known each other since the tender age of 12. They rekindled their friendship after high school when their paths crossed through Mercer’s music and Crosthwaite’s photography.
“Whether it be paper, canvas, music, photography, or what have you, she put her heart and soul into it and it never turned out anything short of amazing,” Mercer said of Crosthwaite. “She puts so much care into her work to make sure it turns out not only how she wants it, but how the model (or) person of interest envisions it.”
Crosthwaite said she dreams of one day touring with Robert Delong or Spirit of the Bear, and of travelling the world to capture different subcultures. But until then, her art and photography is discoverable on Instagram at mindisspinning.