Features

Mira Heo Tells Us Why Portrait Photography is Important to Her

By Ellen Clipson - 4 min read

In this interview, published photographer Mira Heo shares her insights on the importance of visuals in the representation of authentic beauty and modern femininity.

Mira Heo has the unique skill of capturing complex emotion and moments of reflection with minimalistic portrait photographs. In this interview, Mira poetically tells us why self-portraits have played a powerful role in her life and career.

Why Self-Portrait Photography Can Empower Women

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How did you start out in photography?

As soon as I started using a manual camera in a photography class in college I became attracted to the production of pictures.

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What is your biggest inspiration for staying creative?

Emotions found in singular moments.

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What attracted you to taking self-portraits?

Taking self-portraits allows me to concentrate fully on my own feelings.

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“my photography is about solving complexities that I am facing.”

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Do you think your self-portraits represent who you are when you are not in front of the camera? If so, why or why not?

My appearance in front of the camera is not the whole picture. There is more to me than that seen in my images.

Choose a photo that represents your character the most.

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Choose a photograph that shows ‘modern femininity’.

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“I am a woman, and I am taking pictures. That is all.”

What do you want your viewers to feel when they see your photographs?

For me, it’s less about what my audience thinks. Instead, my photography is about solving complexities that I am facing.

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What does beauty mean to you?

For me beauty is about struggle. It can be attached to suffering, loneliness, and sadness.

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Choose a photograph that shows ‘real beauty.’

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Have you ever faced challenges as a ‘female photographer’ or has this never been something you’ve considered?

‘female photographer’? I am a woman, and I am taking pictures. That is all.

What is the importance of a ‘look’ or a ‘glance’ in your photographs?

I don’t know. For me, it’s natural. I often stare at the camera without even realizing.

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What influence does fashion have on your photographs?

Fashion, for me, represents the atmosphere in which I am trying to capture throught the camera lense.

What is it about film photography that you love?

I love the color it produces and the process of deliberation it causes.

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“my portfolio is like a flowing river, it’s always changing.”

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Why is color important in your photographs?

Color allows me to fully complete an particular expression through imagery.

Which photograph out of your portfolio is one that means the most to you and why?

No pictures stand out as the most important to me. Rather, my portfolio is like a flowing river, it’s always changing.

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Take a look at more of Mira’s stunning work on her EyeEm Profile, or her online portfolio.

Find out more about how we are empowering real women in celebration of International Women’s Day and join the first ever #IWD photography competition now!