Selves & Portraits: The Photography of Tabata Roja

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My name is Tabata Roja, I’m a photography student, I’m twenty-three years old and I live in Mexico City. I started being a self-taught photographer and about three years ago I started with formal studies on chemical photography.

All of my work is in film, in my stock there are always Ilford Hp5, Holga, Kodak and recently lomography. I am crazy about the idea of how the emulsion will react to certain conditions of light and processes of development. I can spend hours in a dark room.

For a little over a year and a half, my work has focused on eroticism and nudism, because these are issues that have disturbed me since I can remember. Since young I had a very large fixation for this two subjects, but it was not until relatively recently that I took my camera and began to explore them through it. I realized that eroticism, nudism and women have always been seen from a male point of view.

These photos, are, for me a search.

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A search for eroticism from the point of view of a woman, the beauty of the naked body and the most important, to understand me and find me in each of my photographs. I seek the resignation  of the naked body and the woman. A definitive rupture with the idea that the naked body always has a sexual implication and reconciliation with human forms in their most natural state.

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During most of last year I concentrated on trying to emulate old photographs and paintings, but in the last months without realising it, I began to change the way I see things through the camera and to experiment with frames, processes of development and the way that took a photo, approaching one more step to the search of my own aesthetic.

I have recently begun to explore these issues without limiting myself to third parties, making self-portraits, in order to understand these issues in a much more intimate way and to discover myself in them.

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My first set of self-portraits

I was recently reading Camera Lucida by Roland Barthes and between his lines I found the following words: “… and I wanted to deepen it not as a question (a subject), but as a wound, I see, I feel, then I notice , then I look and I think …

Those lines stayed in my head for several days. After turning those words around I concluded that I could only express it through self-portraits (this is my first series of self-portraits), and one morning I took my tripod, I mounted the camera and I started shooting until I finished the film.

These photos are the result.

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We are glad to share the words and images by Tabata Rojas, an amazing photographer from Mexico. You can check more of her at  @tabataroja on instagram.