Honorable Mention / 2021 / Nature / Underwater


  • Photographer
    Barbara Cole
  • Studio
    Barbara Cole Photography
  • Website
  • Instagram

In Appearances, Cole attributes her dreamlike photography to “portraits” of anthropomorphized flowers. As the title of the series suggests, these images ask what it means to possess a form (human or otherwise) and what is considered worthy to be the subject of an artist’s attention.
By anthropomorphizing these flowers with stunning finesse, flitting between what we perceive as photography and painting, Cole expands the possibilities of the photograph and and the act of empathy altogether.

Figure transformation has been a predominant theme in my work. Over the past thirty years I have been operating as a painter but employing traditional photographic tools.
I rework this canvas with a toolkit that includes clouds, reflections, plastic sheeting, cloth-encased figures as well as aperture, shutter speed and artificial lighting.