by A.J. Weiner.
I’m sure you’ve heard that a picture is worth a thousand words. In Tirilleia’s case, a picture tells a thousand stories and other assorted love songs.
Fair warning, her photographic eye is connected to the enchanting siren she is. Her style and conceptual mind are otherworldly. Once you fall for one of her photographs, you’ll most likely be hooked for all eternity.
Similar to Luke Skywalker firing the precise hit with his proton torpedo to destroy the Death Star, Tirilleia shoots with her eyes closed and her heart open. The mind is set free, she feels when she snaps the shutter. The ultimate goal is to capture that feeling, a moment in time when everything is all right, not necessarily a pretty view. Although pretty views are abound in Tirilleia’s world, she can’t help it. Returning to her Scandinavian birthplace in recent years, she has surrounded her living space with the most beautiful landscape and backdrops. Plus, her creative, imaginative and careful style adds a transcendental reverence. She walks among her Norwegian Wood – and this bird has indeed flown. She truly has become one with the force – It feels like home and peace on earth resounds.
As a roll of film is loaded into one of her wide array of analogue Leica cameras, the sorcery continues. For years, she has been expertly collecting vintage, antique and now even modern lenses and cameras which allow her endless possibilities in order to cast infinite spells. I’ve heard the stories of the hand labor involved to trim the raw unexposed film in order to get it to feed properly into some of the ancient contraptions. Soon she starts clicking, light interacts with the chemicals in the emulsion and her aura seems to affect and wash over every image that is recorded. Next, she will bring the film to life, developing the precious frames in her personal darkroom, a laboratory of love. Hecho a mano, no computers, no edits, no synthesizers!
Tirilleia memorizes everything in song, both in moments and feelings. She uses the power of music to enhance her photography, greatly generated by her extensive vinyl record collection. Often while focusing the lens and holding the body of the camera in a lover’s embrace, she’ll take a meditative breath and connect to the sounds echoing inside her head. The trigger could be influenced from the beat of a specific legendary drum, a timeless soaring sonic note of a precious electric lead guitar solo, or the shamanic voices and lyrics, written and sung by her closest of friends. A curated classic song title might be suggested along with the finished print, and whether you have or have never heard the tune before, when you do listen along with gazing at the picture, it will move the photograph to a higher vibration and take your imagination on a whimsical journey. That’s usually when the dream starts for me, though the images alone have also sent me reveling. Her photographs will get you to question reality. Has she abducted a dream of yours?
Speaking of song, her most recent commissioned work, has matched Tirilleia with one of the most extraordinary singer and songwriting voices amongst the popular world-music stage of today. The magnificent Ane Brun, is Tirilleia’s oh so beautiful subject, practically Scandinavian royalty she is, and the combination of these soulful identities radiates. We all benefit from this synchronistic happening of two force of nature artists working together at the top of their game.
In a recent dramatic published series of artfully stylized images, time lapsed over the last few years, Tirilleia explores the gorgeous innocence, vulnerability, challenges, enlightenment and the inevitable maturity of youth. You can see and feel her relating to her youthful self. Alike her rock and roll heroes, she must have been an outcast, a road runner, running and hiding much too long, this series seems cathartic.
The most powerful art always seems to allow the mind and heart to serpentine around the yin yang line of darkness and the light, between love and anger, between angels and demons. Tirilleia’s photographs portray this very phenomenon. They expose her subjects to the way, whether it’s a countryside landscape, an emotional landscape filled with warm blood or a still-life scene holding a dear relatable memory. The richness of this life we all lead is revealed, in all its wonderous mystery, lurking in the mid-tones, in between the incomprehensible shadows and heaven’s blinding highlight.
Somehow, her photographs will speak to you, more likely sing to you. I’m absolutely sure of it, like they have and continue to heal me. They will give you hope of romance to come or bring up fond memories of loves light passed. Incredibly, they will continue to challenge your perspective as well. Perhaps as your favorite songs have, when you first listened to them as a teenager, they take on entirely different meaning as you gain wisdom through aging. No matter the outcome, I am so very honored and grateful to lean on her gifted images now treasured like old friends and be able to share with you their thousand stories and more.
A Los Angeles native, A.J. Weiner has been in the graphic arts and print industries for over three decades, producing everything from blockbuster feature film campaigns to album and book art for the likes of Bob Dylan and Neil Young. He is also a music producer, engineer, manager, journalist and a published songwriter for Warner Chapel Music and BMI. He has been known to tout that he has sung backup on a Ringo Starr record. His current passion project is managing his own independent rock and roll internet radio station, RadioKAJW, broadcasting internationally on Live365 from Huntington Beach, California.
Cameras: Leica III, IIIc, IIIf, M4, M6, R4, Minilux, CL film
Lenses: Leica Summicron 50mm f.2 /collapsible, Elmar 50mm f3.5, Summitar 50mm f.2, Summar 50mm f.2, Summilux 50mm f/1.4, Summicron M 50mm f.2
Film: Kodak Professional. Always.
All photos: ©tirilleia