Location: Brooklyn, NY, United States
Fathers and Sons
Portraits of an influential relationship
I became the father of a boy in 2012 and the change this constantly evolving relationship has brought to my life is hard to overstate. Since I myself am the single child of a single mother (I never knew my father), I also have to navigate parenthood without a first hand role model. This gave me an interest in photographically exploring the relationships of other fathers and sons.
A father is the first and often main role model for a son (not exactly a small responsibility). He constantly has to strike a balance between safety and freedom, support and letting his son fail, discipline and improvisation when it comes to raising a son. A father also has to reflect on how he is leading his own life and how that will influence his son’s life.
For the vast majority there is a deep unconditional love between fathers and sons underlying these complicated issues.
In the US, society’s view of fatherhood (and manhood), is shifting.
We’re in the middle of a process where a man’s role in society is fundamentally reexamined, discussed and expanded. Many new opportunities are opening up for men to lead their lives in new and less restricted ways. Yet this creates plenty of doubt and anxiety leading to a pushback on a private and as well as a political level. The ways we as men are interacting with each other, with women and members of different communities, is often rooted in the father-son relationship. These relationships put together become like a mirror of our country.
The portraits are posed and lit. I want the images to feel vaguely like memories since memories are an essential bond between family members, and so the images are shot loosely to incorporate the environment with all it’s weird little details. They give the subjects a sense of place, which is integral to most family relationships. Some images are more formal portraits with the subjects acknowledging the camera