My name is Reena. I am a native new Yorker, first born American. I was raised in NYC, which gave me a hard shell, quick wittiness, and a New York accent. My life was an ironic, wonderful blend of the hilarious Seinfeld sitcom and the exciting life of women in Sex in the City until I met the love of my life. We packed up our high energy NYC life and moved to a much slower paced town in midcoast Maine. Seeing the amount of beauty here took our breath away and we had to live in it! And photograph it.
I majored in Fine Art Photography at the Academy of art University and invented my own photographic process. I thought I would just be a fine artist, the infamous “starving artist”, but After years of being in the restaurant, food/service industry as I pursued my art, I realized that I want to photograph full time. It's my passion, my voice, and my vision.
ABOUT THE REENATYPE
The “Reenatype” process is a unique style of photography developed after years of experimenting and learning different photographic mediums. I was always amazed at the captured image and how it came to develop. The Polaroid was a natural choice to start developing my own original process.
My obsession with Polaroid intensified as I realized how much feeling the image emanated. As my process developed, I sought out more Polaroid cameras with features that added to my technique. Experimentation became an everyday adventure with new results all the time. I developed exactly what I was searching for, complete creative control with a hands-on process yielding a one of a kind print created in the color darkroom (nondigital!).
Instead of the traditional negative, I use the positive of the polaroid to contact print that to a paper negative and then contact it again to make a paper positive. By doing this, the image becomes more abstract, causing it to look like a painting. The actual process became such an important part of how the image looked at the end.
My body of work includes anything that evokes emotion, which is often twisted, warped, and oddly beautiful in a dark sense. It became my goal to convey my vision as I saw it, to have the viewer experience a feeling, something that connected one person to another, artist to viewer. Being human means exploring the different areas of the mind and playing with our imaginations.
The Polaroid is customarily contained in its small square, a memory frozen, wanting to be immortalized, touched, and remembered. I have figured out a way to break the image out of its box. My color c-prints are various sizes and no longer trapped in their eternal “small box”.
I only hope my work will communicate the beauty in which I see the world; unique, wondrous, and beautifully imperfect. In today’s modern age, it is hard to find a handcrafted photograph. This is my contribution to keeping that art alive as well as finding more ways to continue to explore this medium.