The Girl Who Could Turn Herself Into Anything
Floating fish. An orchid for an eye. Feathery hair. Welcome to the world of Hungarian freelance visual artist and photographer Flora Borsi. With a surrealist touch, Flora uses her own life, memories, and emotions to execute superbly manipulated images featuring her as the main subject. Transforming every bit of her appearance for her ongoing self-portrait series, Flora used the X1D to capture her flora and fauna inspired creations.
To achieve the right look for this image, I dyed my hair pink. It’s a funny story because I thought I could wash it out in a few days after the image was complete, but my hair stayed pink for over two months. It was worth it anyway. I also added pink colors and tones to the image to be in harmony with my hair.
SHUTTER SPEED: 1/2000 SEC
FOCAL LENGTH: 45MM (XCD 3,5/45)
At first, I tried to make this image using a fake orchid, but after taking a trial photo with the X1D, the result was so sharp and high quality that you could see the petals' material texture. I then went to a florist to buy a real orchid instead. I analysed the characteristics and colours of the flower and used bright white makeup to sort of match its tones. In post, I changed my eye colour from blue to yellow to match my eye to the centre of the flower.
SHUTTER SPEED: 1/500 SEC
FOCAL LENGTH: 90MM (XCD 3,2/90)
After creating a feather wig, I took multiple photos where I threw feathers in the air. I then merged 5 or 6 photographs into one. Using the same lighting and aperture settings, the pictures looked quite similar; I just had to erase the background of some pictures of the feathers. The hardest part was the feather on my back – I had to draw that feather in order to cut it out perfectly, blend it in with the background, and place shadows on my body.
SHUTTER SPEED: 1/250 SEC
FOCAL LENGTH: 45MM (XCD 3,5/45)
While seated center stage in front of the camera, unbeknown to the viewer, Flora was holding her smartphone by her side, using the Hasselblad Phocus Mobile app. Seated in a delicate setup, the use of Phocus Mobile was crucial when it came to Flora having the flexibility to take images from her seat with the touch of a button, preview the image instantly, and change various settings if necessary to reshoot the photo – all without leaving her seat and keeping her fragile composition intact.
The quality of the photographs was absolutely mind-blowing. I’ve never seen details with such perfect quality as the X1D delivers. The colours were completely accurate; the texture and shades were totally on point. I have never seen this kind of ‘perfectness’.
Based in Budapest, Hungary, Flora Borsi is a fine art photographer drawing on surrealist themes that explore the female body and its representation. Teaching herself photo editing at the young age of 11, Flora also holds a degree in photography from the Moholy-Nagy University of Arts. Her work has been exhibited internationally with solo exhibitions in Europe and the USA. Her images have received critical acclaim from the press, including features in BBC Culture and Vice. See more of her work here.