From the Art of Pho­tog­ra­phy to Fash­ion­able Art

SHE Carribean Magazine - - FASHION NOTEBOOK -

Fiona Comp­ton is a pho­tog­ra­pher whose pas­sion for cap­tur­ing Caribbean women on film led her to be in­vited to show in an ex­hi­bi­tion at the St. Lu­cian High Com­mis­sion in London on In­ter­na­tional Women's Day in March. Born and raised in St. Lu­cia, Fiona has lived in London for 15 years, but she read­ily ad­mits that her heart and soul are still in the Caribbean. Her Flower Se­ries, de­scribed as ‘women with vi­brant Caribbean flow­ers', has drawn much at­ten­tion and ad­mi­ra­tion for the strength and beauty of the fe­male and flo­ral images. She has rein­ter­preted clas­sic art by tak­ing photographs of Caribbean women that mimic the works of great masters, such as a recre­ation of Jo­hannes Ver­meer's Girl with a Pearl Ear­ring, us­ing a del­i­cate shell to re­place the pearl in the orig­i­nal. Also in 2013, Fiona launched a line of hand-painted dresses in the UK, and was pleas­antly sur­prised at the re­ac­tion to her ‘wear­able art' pieces.

“Par­adise Prints started when I bought a dress on­line for a wed­ding and when I got it I thought it was re­ally bor­ing. Since I love vi­brancy and colours, I de­cided to grab some fab­ric paint and throw some flow­ers on there. Three years later I wore the dress again and got so many com­pli­ments - peo­ple were ask­ing where they could get one. So I started putting the de­signs on Face­book and Twit­ter and the line just took off from there. I was in­vited to in­clude my work in a de­sign­ers' pop up bou­tique in Europe's big­gest mall, West­field Strat­ford, where Par­adise Prints have been part of two cat­walk shows, and we will also be fea­tured at Ne­vis fash­ion week­end, which is won­der­ful!

“My ob­ses­sion with bright colours and flow­ers comes from me liv­ing in London for the past 15 years. Of course the UK is renowned for its bad weather, and per­haps to keep my san­ity, a lot of my work de­picts a colour­ful Caribbean feel which is like food and hap­pi­ness for my soul and spirit. I would not call my­self a de­signer, more of an artist... I don't de­sign the pieces I paint on, I ac­quire them from all over...what­ever looks and feels good! I try to find sim­ple pieces and make them pop. But I do think de­sign­ing is the next step, or per­haps col­lab­o­rat­ing with another de­signer, right now I'm open for any­thing!”

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