• Holly Cole

Authentic costumes - an exploration of identity

Authentic costumes is my current personal project which I have been creating for around a year and a half and will continue to expand as I meet new people and explore each others identity.

I create stories using Portrait and Still Life photography to explore the identities and lifestyles of people in the modern world. Constructing an identity within a single photograph leads us to judge that person, stereotype them and not fully understand that persons true identity. Using my commercial background mixed with artistic influences I have created a unique way of displaying my work as to offer a window into the subject’s life and lifestyle.

I intend to open the viewers eyes, to let them explore and discover the hidden world around them and to breakdown the judgement and stereotyping that we all make every day about each other.

My work will be displayed as a main portrait surrounded by still lives, for me a story within photography is important by using more photographs I’m allowing the viewer to be absorbed into a life of another.

So far I've had the pleasure of working with 6 different people and explore their identities hobbies and jobs in order to find the true person within. From working with reenactors, a drag queen, a wood carver and lots of other people to explore their identities and their true passions in life in order to create a series of photographs that will capture the essence of each of them and their journey to their true self.

Each of my subject are going to have a blog post which can be found here:

Glass blower:



Drag Queen:

Wood Carver:


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