STILL LIFE FOREVER IN BLOOM

“Stay strong through your pain

grow flowers from it
you have helped me
grow flowers out of mine so
bloom beautifully
dangerously
loudly
bloom softly
however you need
just bloom”

― Rupi Kaur, Milk and Honey

We were just gifted the richly beautiful, evocative collection of poetry Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur, and her honest exploration of the collective experiences of today’s modern woman hasn’t left since we first opened the book.  It reminds us of all of the delicate inner layers we hold within and of finding a sublime sense of beauty in unexpected, ugly, grotesque places that aren’t often explored.  Rupi’s authentic, expressive exposure of the not so beautiful sides of existence inspired us to create a visual story mirroring this exploration.  This idea literally bloomed into a photographic still life inspired by two other powerful female artists that we love – Georgia O’Keeffe and Frida Kahlo – who were brave enough to expose their emotional narratives and joy of the universe through painterly allegories.

By becoming objects of our own still life painting, we satisfy the catharsis we crave.  So we set out to make our version of visual poetry by worshipping at the alter of an empty parking lot with a blue wall temple – taking the ordinary, the ugly and making it extraordinary. Allowing the tension between different inanimate objects and the physical poses of our bodies play together, we create a dance of a unique visual composition.

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Francesca on embracing her inner flower arranger:
I wanted to embrace my wild, earthy side that loves running in the dirt, picking wildflowers and spending Sundays wandering lazily from farmers market to brunch. Although I also love dressing up and being a bit of drama Queen, my inner circle knows me as a Grandma…because I so enjoy the simple things like sipping tea and reading a good book.  I often don’t show the quieter, calm side of myself that craves stability and routine, but thought it was time to create an easy summer look that encapsulates my love of escaping to my own world of domestic bliss and imagination.  The bright yellow statement color of this dress reminds me of all the love, comfort and warmth I crave and also inspires me to want to buy fresh flowers and eat strawberries while arranging them.  I love how easy this shift dress is to pull on and off and how cooling and comfortable it makes me feel on these warm summer days.  Oh, and did I mention my whole look is from Forever 21 and makes me feel totally elegant and feminine but also allows me to be a messy domestic Goddess and not worry about dirt from the Garden or accidents from the kitchen!

 

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Valentina on her newfound energy

Growing up in a circle of strong women was positively powerful in many ways, but I often felt encouraged to conceal my gentler nature. However in the last year or so, and since we began our V&F platform journey, I have allowed my core feminine energy to come through in an incredibly unapologetic way. Embracing that true part of myself through my work has been a blessing. The richly visual narratives Francesca and I build through this blog have been a perfect way for me to express my emotions and inner joy in an organic and authentic way. For this editorial we became still life objects for a photographic ‘painting’ becoming one with our environment. My H&M animal print dress provided me with the perfect dose of modern femininity and sensuality. For this sunny day, I paired it with my Michael Kors sneakers – staying true to my objective – comfort while standing out. But I can very easily see myself pairing it with sexy heels for a playful date night look.

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Valentina & Francesca

Valentina & Francesca is for the millennial individual who sets the direction to her life with optimism and an unwaveringly open mind. A high-impact, laser-focused digital platform generating unique content inspiring connected women to discover their personal style. Valentina & Francesca enhances your brand’s story with bold contemporary narratives celebrating confidence and power in a smart, irreverent way within a highly engaged community.

One comment

  • These colours, these poses! It looks like you’re having a lot of fun, and I have to say, I do have a soft spot for Georgia and Frida, so I really looooove your posts that’s insane

    Like

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