My name is Carolina Schaffer, I am a mixed media artist, and poet. Together with my husband Vitor Sá, who is a photographer, I created the series Sua Flora: a poetic about flowers and love. We started the series in Brasilia (BRA) in the middle of 2015, but today we live in Asheville (USA) and whenever we find some flowers we produce a new portrait. Our collection has more than 60 photos with flowers from different regions of Brazil and other countries, such as Chile and the United States. The main purpose is to assemble a collection of photos with flowers from all the Biomes of the World and show this richness for all those who enjoy Art.
Sua Flora: a poetic series on flowers and love
It was in spring of 2015. Vitor and I had been living together for 1 year. On a sunny late afternoon, Vitor took the flowers from the living room vase, the tablecloth, and called me: "Bonita, lay down here quickly. I want to take a picture!". After some time gently arranging each flower around my head, click. The photo was chosen by Your Daily Photograph as the best photo in the love-themed contest, promoted by Duncan Miller Gallery. Thus was born @SuaFlora, a series where we use nature as inspiration to give uniqueness to the beauty of flowers. We often think that Sua Flora is also poetry in the form of light, a silent declaration of love for ourselves and for one another, in a gesture of dedication and mutual surrender to art and Mother Nature herself. #SuaFlora is part of our lives today because wherever we are, we always keep an eye on the nature of the place and the flowers that are offered to us.
About the flowers
Each flower has its process, its own history. On average we take about 3 hours to produce each photo, which consists of collecting the flowers, identifying the species, choosing a nice background, find the perfect natural light, lie down, straighten my hair, arrange the flowers (once Vitor took more than 30 minutes doing that, I think that is the part of the creative process he enjoys most!), click, choose the best photo, edit, and post.
For the first picture, we used flowers that I bought in a market near our home in Brasilia. The others appeared to us. At the door of our house, near the restaurant where we had lunch, at some trail in the middle of nature, at the side of the road, at the exit of the theatre. Brasilia is a very wooded city and I think this made it easier to start the series. Then, of course, we became more daring and started planning trips just to get a certain flower, thinking about the flowering season.
One of my favourite stories is about the Calliandra portrait, a very delicate red flower of the Cerrado. It sprouts between the rocks and the dry grass at the hottest season of the year. It puts its flowers during the day and at nightfall, they are already closed. Whenever we were going to get a trail, I kept hoping to find them. Many times we have found only one specimen. Obviously, we never got it. Until one day we found a field full of them, it was pure joy. Particularly it is one of my favourite photos.
One common thing in all the photos is the respect we have for Nature. For example, we always try to choose the flowers that have already fallen from the tree and, when it is the case to collect, we never take all the flowers from the same tree, we go behind another copy of the same species in the vicinity. If we do not find it, we let go and start searching for other species.
The message behind the series
Sua Flora is that moment that makes you stop to observe. Observe the perfect details of each flower. The healing power and the calm that the flora transmits. Observe the synergy between flowers and women. We believe that flowers have the power to transform our vision, make us see the beauty in everything. In addition, our photos also reveal that to have access to this intact nature we must be careful about the Earth, we must conserve our forests, we must respect biodiversity and all forms of life.