When I photograph men, they tend to cover their faces or pose in ways that conceal their true nature. I always push them to change this behavior in order to reveal a more vulnerable side of the self. Unfold your arms, loosen your shoulders, look directly into the lens. Tell me who you are, be proud, present yourself to the world.
The subject of this image, Aquim, was willing to present himself in an honest way on the afternoon he agreed to pose for me. I had found two bougainvillea branches during a walk and shared that I was looking for someone to hold them to make an archway in a royal fashion. He let on that he was shy, but open to the idea and we set off to take pictures under the blazing sun. When we came across this tree, I was very interested in the way the shadows fell upon his face. I like to associate the words ‘quiet storm’ with Aquim. He has a youthful spirit and I appreciate the seriousness this portrait affords him.
When asked about the meaning of his name, Aquim once said “The only meaning I would put to it is the concept of bohemia – ideals that deal with truth, freedom and freedom of choice to do whatever you want.”