Exposure: Photographer Flora Hanitijo

Art Director Gem Fletcher examines the work of Flora Hanitijo, in the latest installment of a series looking into talent in photography, from recent graduates to photographers breaking the rules…

The work of photographer Flora Hanijito carefully balances both fine art and commercial. Breaking into the industry through a mix of music and fashion commissions, Flora went on to shoot for The New York Times, Nike and Adidas.

Originally from Macau, she grew up in Montreal and now splits her time between New York and London. Her nomadic life has influenced her approach to image making, manifested in her personal project “While you were sleeping”. The project is a collection of cinematic everyday moments, or ‘love letters’ as Flora describes them, to the people she loves and those she has left behind.

Her work is deeply personal, an intimate exploration of her life and that of her subjects. As a creative she has a quiet strength, never shying away from difficult subject matter, while breathing beauty into every frame.

Flora’s portfolio celebrates individuality, photographing people from all walks of life, thoughtfully sharing a slice of their story with her viewers. Whether she is shooting a sports campaign, a short film or a portrait series, genuine authenticity is central to her practice.

Photography by Flora Hanjito
Sleep Studies by Flora Hanijito
Photography by Flora Hanjito
Sleep Studies by Flora Hanijito

One stand out project is Sleep Studies; a collection of portraits shot while the sitter sleeps. These mesmerizing images, currently being developed into a book, show people in one of their most vulnerable and private states. The project is rooted in her personal experience of being a caretaker for two family members battling cancer. “Being a caretaker is very isolating and lonely” Flora shares, “You feel guilty for feeling exhausted while your caring for people who are battling serious illness”. The project served as a cathartic expression of the human condition.

Seeking out beauty in the everyday, she has the ability to capture and distill highly emotive moments with a refined simplicity. With an upcoming book and some exciting film projects in the works. Flora Hanitijo is definitely one to watch.

florahanitijo.com; @florahanitijo

gemfletcher.com; @gemfletcher

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