Kelli Connell

Kelli Connell is a photographer with her “Double Life” collection starting back in 2002 and carrying on still today. Probably like most people, I first thought Kelli was the subject in all of her photography, but then I found out she has been using the same model for 14 years. Because of this, she can depict relationships (both external and internal), the multiplicity of personal identity, and the evolution of those things with time/age.

This picture really got my attention from Connell’s first group of these photos because the two subjects look like very different people. The expression they both have exudes love and their lines of sight match up really well, making the whole picture realistically believable.

This picture was one of many that blew my mind when I first saw it. It just looks so organic and like their heads are actually touching. I know Kelli said she often stands in with the model to help with positioning, but she also said that never involves her own head. I like looking at this piece and seeing both the two people version of this picture and the two sides of the same person. It shows intimacy, both with someone else but also a sort of intimacy and calm being around oneself.

This last photo is from Kelli’s latest installment of the “Double Life” series. I thought this fifth installment was interesting in how much less physical the two subjects were. They’re living a comfortable life in each others’ presence as their lives and relationship change over time. I also really like the set design of this photo, with the colors of the pillow on the left matching the books on the right (among other things).