Artist of the Issue: Hart’s Photo “Darling”


Reprinted with permission from Sophie Darling

Breeze Aguilar, Editor in Chief

Sophie Darling is a senior at Hart and avid multimedia artist. At Hart, Darling has participated in video production, photo and film club.

“I enjoy sculpture, illustration, fashion design, dance… the list goes on and on,” said Darling. Since quarantine began in early 2020, she spent her time at home exploring different mediums, trying to figure out which to focus on. However, she always finds herself returning to photography, appreciating it as both its own art form and to showcase others. She prefers film photography and currently uses 35mm film and 120 film on a medium format camera.

Although Darling has no formal mentor, she gains inspiration from her next door neighbor Cecile.

“She has challenged me by making me photograph her work in ways that prove to be a difficult and wonderful process. Showing true meaning rather than photographing what is “pretty” or “trendy” at the given time,” Darling said. Cecile, whose main art form is taxidermy, has helped Darling consider things such as texture or lighting and furthered the depth and meaning of her art. Darling recalled listening to Cecile’s stories about growing up in Europe and traveling the world, inspiring her, not just as an artist but also as a curious individual.

Darling never had an aha moment where art suddenly became serious– it always was. Both her parents are art professors, so art was much less a hobby, and more an entire lifestyle.

“Art was an integral part of life for me growing up,” Darling said.

She gains inspiration from various people, including Patti Smith, Björk, Elsa Dorfman and her dad. Some of Darling’s favorite pieces include Robert Rauschenberg’s “Erased De Kooning,” Yuan and Peng Yu’s “Can’t Help Myself,” “The Hunt of the Unicorn” tapestries and Elsa Dorfman’s portrait of Jonathan Richman.

“I also adore street photography and candid, genuine moments that tell stories. I also am very inspired by fashion, textile art and people!” Darling said.

She plans to further her artistic and academic career at CalArts in the fall where she’ll study under the Photography/Media program.