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Sharon Jane D. for Art Youth Society’s ‘Brainchild’

A concept born out of a desire to work with artists and photographers that Team AYS know and hold in esteem due to what they are able to bring across in their work, the AYS ‘Brainchild’ Project is distinctly different than anything you’ve seen from them before. Each photographer is set to contribute photographs for the project, using pieces from Art Youth Society, and incorporating them into their own unique work of art. This project places the emphases on artistic interpretation.

After showing you a preview of the work of GreyEtc., New York based creative brainchild of British born photographer Nadia Sarwar and Australian born photographer Drex Drechsel and the work of photographer Kimi Hammerstroem, we would love to introduce you to our next artist Sharon Jane D.

Sharon Jane D. (1989) is a passionate visual artist based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. She describes her work as an “instinctive desire to combine fashion and documentary photography whilst maintaining a raw and experimental feel”.

She expresses herself through still and moving images, and translates stories into visuals. She is inspired by different perceptions of beauty, people, places, life, light and love.

Her free work often has a melancholic undertone and contains a mix of reality and illusion.

So, first: Where are you from, where are you now and where will you be in 10 years?
I‘m from Rotterdam, and I worked my way to the “Big but tiny city Amsterdam” and hope to see as much of the world as possible within 10 years. I will also ultimately live on an Island sippin‘ fresh coconut juice everyday.

A big part of your work is bright, colorful and sometimes holds something exotic. As you call yourself a world-citizen, where does this openness towards cultures come from?
My parents were born in Surinam, they’re both of mixed race and raised my sisters and me with an open mind towards different cultures and life-styles.

I’ve always been interested in traveling and seeing other worlds. I get inspired by the diversity of people, the way they look, their stories and where they come from.

Being able to capture life, light and love in your pictures means that you also look or looked into the subject of death, darkness and hate. When or where does this side take action?
I draw inspiration from the most extreme emotions that I‘ve felt in my life, be it intensely pleasant or dark.

My work is for the most part about the feelings I experience in everyday life. Depending on the situation I’m in, I create an image. It’s a fusion of my thoughts and circumstances. The contrasts and thin line between positive and negative emotions. I’m always personally involved within my projects and the concept always finds it’s origin in my feelings.

How did you join the society (of photography artists) and why?
I kind of experimented within different art disciplines when I was a young girl figuring out what I wanted to do. I had (way too) many different interests and photography is just a great output and a good way to capture, and archive all the things I like.

Amsterdam is your base. Does the city make a good home for a world-citizen? Why?
I grew up in Rotterdam, after graduating at the university I moved to Amsterdam because most of the creative stuff in my world happens here. Amsterdam has a more international feel but is not too overwhelming. I definitely think it’s a good home base because it inspires me creatively for many reasons and the city keeps me busy. I can work and chill at the same time. Also, I can travel wherever and whenever I want and meet people from different places. Its location and proximity to cities such as London, Berlin and Paris is awesome because a trip within Europe never takes longer than 3 hours.

What does art mean to you? Do you consider yourself as an artist?
Art is just beautiful, and I mean every discipline is beautiful. I‘m an artist in the sense that I create images from scratch and I‘ve always done that. To me it is a way to express myself, something that is a necessity in order to feel free. At this point it is my work, my life, my income, and I love it.

Favourite jewelery piece. Why?
My nose ring. It‘s been part of me since I was 9 years old, that‘s when my parents started to allow me to express myself in the way I look. But besides that, anything that‘s golden.

City crush? Why?
Can‘t choose. I‘ve had a big crush on NY, cause the vibe I got when I was there was very inspiring and it made me want to go back every day just to feel it. Also LA, I mean: good weather, palmtrees, art, extravagant. Paris is also cute, fun and sexy. Berlin is my hungover art crush. London I like; nice culture and people. Barcelona is cute to date every once in a while. Paramaribo, because family and the best food.

I‘m looking for a new crush to add to the list!

Interview by Sarah Krause