Holding her first solo exhibition at Courthouse Youth Arts in late July, Gabrielle Barnes continues to impress those around her with her photography work.

This particular series, titled ‘You Are All the Colours’ explored social media, relationships and how colours can represent the emotions within those elements. We had a chat to Gabrielle about the creation of the show, her progression in photography and where it all began.

Congrats on your first solo exhibition, how are you feeling now the opening night is all done and dusted?

To be honest I am relieved that it’s over, due to being so busy with university and work fitting in preparation for the exhibition was a lot to juggle.

What made you decide to use these images as part of the solo show?

The images and the concept is very powerful because it made me depict how I am really feeling in a visual way. After my last break up I was so lost on what to do with my life because I was so used to being in a relationship. This helped me pinpoint how I want to be and how much I have grown/changed since then.

The images were an exploration of how love is depicted on social media and in photography and uses colours to do this as well. What did you discover with the colours you were using to convey the messages? Was it important to have the colours to reinforce the point?

These days, social media really controls how we see how relationships—as in always being perfect all the time. But they’re not at all. They’re so much more than just a like on Instagram. It’s about love, trust, communication and sacrifice.

The colours are such a powerful source of symbolism. Each colour represented an emotion; red was passion etc.

What were the techniques you applied to create each image?

I used a range of coloured gels projected on each model. I then used Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop to create a layered aesthetic on each image.

Have you found studying photography is something that has changed your photography process? How are you finding the course?

I have found it difficult the commute to Melbourne from Geelong every couple of days, but I have learnt so much already about lighting, concept planning etc. I am excited to learn more and more in the future of my course.

What’s a technique or subject matter you love to explore?

I love to explore alternative portraiture that forced the audience to stop and contemplate the work itself. I also love close up photography of flowers.

What’s next for your photography project?

I plan to explore more with coloured gels and controlling the highlights within the images more.

Do you remember the first moment you experienced photography and what it was?

I remember using my little red Nikon camera when I was 6 years old. I have always been so fascinated how it can capture a moment instantly.

What do you love most about photography?

I love that photography gives me a platform to express myself and a chance to explore different techniques within photography itself, such as lighting.

Gabrielle’s exhibition ‘You Are All the Colours’ opened on July 25 and ran until August 22. You can follow Gabrielle on Instagram. For more artist interviews head here.

All images by Leikography.