We spoke recently to MAC member Ginny Koppenhol who has her first solo exhibition Ablaze! opening at the More Music gallery on Sept 13th. Here’s what she had to say…
The ‘Ablaze!’ project started 7 months ago, when Johnny (Bean) asked me if I’d like to have an exhibition hosted by MAC. I jumped at the chance as it’d be my first solo photography exhibition!
I take my approach to creative projects from the world of improvisational theatre, in essence saying “Yes and…” very quickly to a proposal. In doing so, your mind doesn’t have time to consider the reasons why not to do something. I love it…but I didn’t have a plan. I knew I wanted to create new pieces for the exhibition and to work with local people as my subjects.
I was watching a course on Youtube one evening and a lady in the audience had vivid pink hair. I immediately decided to use brightly coloured dyed hair as my portrait series theme. It’s been a fun theme that allowed me to explore colour, peoples personalities and the local area.
I created a new concept for each portrait, based on only a short phone conversation with the person beforehand. All of my subjects were volunteers who simply wanted to help out and / or try something new. None of them had posed for photos before and most of them didn’t know me beforehand. How fantastic that others are willing to simply say “yes and…” too!
I learnt loads along the way. Here are a few insights:
* ‘Mistakes’ can often produce the best results
* It’s really hard to find men with brightly coloured hair (I did do in the end though)
* The tide comes in very quickly in Morecambe Bay, especially when you’re trying to finish a shoot in the water!
* As well as local scenes, stuffed deer (in a museum), mirrors and wool can make for great props.
I would love for you to come and see my portraits, if for no other reason than to celebrate and applaud the wonderful people featured in them. Between them, they posed on a freezing beach, pretended to be a mermaid, donned swimwear and threw their hair in the air many (many) times.
The ‘Ablaze!’ launch party is on Friday 13th September 2019 at More Music from 6-9pm. https://moremusic.org.uk/ Music will be provided by Mills and Murphy and Ginny will be offering a chance to try stop motion animation.
You can find out more about Ginny and her work at: