After this long it’s been a pleasure revisiting Elle Muliarchyk’s portfolio and encountering her new project Rodarte: Fly.

“When a man photographs a women he projects an idea of his perfect woman onto his subject, but that fantasy doesn’t exist, so the work looks lifeless and predictable. They create and recreate an Icon, but all they manage to get is a Mona Lisa sans the smile – and with great tits. But female photographers usually surprise me – there is always something unsettling about the images. A woman knows how fucked up she really is and is not afraid to channel it into her work. A woman’s photograph is her self-portrait. A man’s photograph is Dow Jones of the society’s demands and expectations. It’s a generalization of course, some men photographers whose work I love – like Terry Richardson and Araki – also manage to show what’s INSIDE them rather than just pleasing the mob. And if doesn’t matter is that thing is good or evil.”

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I can’t believe last time Paul Phung’s photos were on Art Sponge was back in 2009… In any case his photography has definitely grown nicely since, and although I’d love to show all of his great work, I chose to feature the rather darker side to his monochrome shots. Paul’s grainy and highly contrasted shots are delicately composed and seem to explore the minimalist ideal of less is more  within portraiture.

Dark Black & White Photography Portrait by Paul Phung

Dark Black & White Photography Portrait by Paul Phung

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This is an amazing example of dedication to hand-work and D.I.Y in an overwhelmingly virtual and automatized world. Ian Ruhter is traveling through the US in a van he had turned into a massive wet-plate camera. Watch the beautiful short documentary below, explaining the sacrifices Ian has made in order to realize this high-risk project – every photograph is a project in itself, with all sorts of elements potentially ruining it. However when Ian succeeds in capturing the shot, the results are magnificent.

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