Rachelle Simoneau’s Photographs of Our Memories

Photographer Rachelle Simoneau is an irresistibly sweet friend of mine whose talent and focus over the last few years have evolved to produce a remarkably impressive body of work.  Rachelle has a unique aesthetic, choosing to wash colours out instead of intensify them, a technique that takes us back in time and creates images that are almost otherworldly.  Fellow photographer Luna Simic likens looking at Rachelle’s images to looking at fond memories.  Rachelle uses faded colours and tones to evoke nostalgia of a past life but creates settings that are more beautiful and interesting than we remember them to be.  What I love most about her work is her ability to capture her subjects in marionette-type poses, seemingly floating around within the frame.

Soon to be based in Paris, Rachelle is from a small town in Ontario called Fergus, located outside of Guelph.  Her small town roots and love of nature are apparent in her images, where the fields, forests and rolling hills play a role as important as that of the beautiful models she shoots.  Rachelle lived and worked in both Vancouver and Toronto before taking her talents across the pond in 2010.

Capturing stories of innocent youth, Rachelle’s photos are airy, whimsical and romantic.  The models in Rachelle’s stories are described by our mutual friend Lyndsey as delicate but not weak.  In response to why she shoots predominantly female subjects, Rachelle explains “I find women extremely beautiful and fascinating to work with because they seem to reveal their emotions more easily than men.  Having said that, as I become closer to the men in my life, I’m excited to start new projects with them.”

(Above photos from the Billy Goat and I photoshoot; Model: Emily Hull; Styling: Vintage 69; Location: Fergus, Ontario)

(Image above from The Lost Girls photoshoot; Model: Vienna Stampeen; Stylists: Whitney McMeekin & Eva Bowering; Makeup & Hair: Christina Spina; Photography Assistant: Lyndsey Rolheiser)

It’s not surprising that Rachelle’s work exudes whimsy and romanticism.  “I’m definitely drawn to the romantic side of everything.  When I’m at an antique market in London, I hunt down vintage poetry books, old records (for the photos and the music), used post cards and I have quite the collection of lovely vintage barrettes.”  Rachelle herself is just as dreamy and charming as the scenes she depicts. She has two new fashion spreads appearing in a magazine this September. I’m proud of you Rachelle and look forward to seeing your new work.  xoxoxo

(Model/Dancer: Jenna Oxley; Location: Elora, Ontario)

(Model: Oksana Bach; Location: Vancouver, BC)

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