Chelcie S. Porter

Chelcie S. Porter was born in Illinois yet raised on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi, and she lives in Chicago. She believes that being an outsider led her to greatly appreciate the southern traditions of story telling and influenced her documentary style. She began photographing everything she could with a tiny 110mm camera at age six. Raised by an artist and a fashion model, she began her life both in front and behind the camera. She decided at age sixteen to continue the rest of her life as a photographer and opened Luckwings immediately after her graduation from high school. Her first exhibition, a series of self-portraits, was held at the Wisconsin State Department of Art.

Her work is often shot in black and white 35mm. She has a tendency to produce high contrast images due to their graphic nature and gothic feel, which is derived from her fashion photography background. She has been influenced greatly by fashion photographers like David LaChapelle and Udo Spritezenbarth. Her color photographs are often altered with filters, but occasionally photographs are altered digitally to enhance saturation, contrast or alter color.

Although photography is her main focus as an artist, her work is not limited to photography. Her work also includes abstract oil paintings that concentrate on organic shapes with subject matter -- ranging from figurative, to landscapes, to still lifes, or all of the above. Chelcie also combines sculpture and fashion, creating wearable art such as crinolines adorned with stained glass, as well as bra with matching garter skirt made from muslin and burlap.

Zane Ivy has written poetry in response to Chelcie Porter's artwork, which is being performed at Café Mestizo on October 27.