Contemporary ideals about what constitutes beauty have gradually become more homogenized by the widespread popularity of shared digital experiences. Before the emergence of the internet, the application of makeup—for the majority of people—was a process of untutored, organic self-experimentation. Here, photographer Jason Hetherington (born 1972) and make-up artist Mel Arter, both based in London, debunk the modern-day fashion industry bias toward airbrushed perfection with their collaborative volume Elements.
The book presents an exhilarating study of cosmetics, landscape and light, taking a hedonistic trip to a bygone era of analogue film photography and bold, spontaneous artistry inspired by natural forms. Celebrating the powerful relationship between human and earth, Elements is an ode to a time when makeup represented freedom, ritual and instinctive creativity.
Jason Hetherington and Mel Arter have collaborated for more than a decade and Elements is their first book. Their work has been published across international fashion magazines and beauty campaigns worldwide.