I have always had a deep respect for portrait photography and its ability to capture more than just an image, but a person’s story. For most of my life my work has been mostly documentary, capturing dance and drag performances, but I always disliked the lack of control I had over my images. Because of this I decided that for my sustained investigation I wanted to experiment with studio portrait photography in order to take full control of lighting, color, and composition as well as create a relationship of trust between model and photographer. The studio enabled me to control the lighting’s color, direction, and brightness allowing for more specific compositions. Inspired by the intimacy of Caravaggio's chiaroscuro combined with Mapplethorpe's celebration of the body, I used light, shadow, and the safety of the studio to explore the sculptural nature of the human figure, elevating my work beyond simple portraits.