Vicki King is one of those photographers whose images make you want to step straight into the world they create. Her subjects seem to inhabit somewhere else – an eternally sunny place, their faces awash with warm hues of orange and pink. This otherworldly-ness is no mistake explains the London-based photographer, who admits to having an obsession with wanting to exist in a “timeless dreamscape.”
Largely a fashion photographer, Vicki’s client list has continued to expand at an impressive rate since we last spoke to her. However, she also recently collaborated on a personal project with Vex Ashley of A Four Chambered Heart. “We share the same obsession with wanting to exist in a timeless dreamscape for as much of waking life as possible,” Vicki tells It’s Nice That. To replicate this as best they could, the pair created a “void pond” in a paddling pool in Vex’s kitchen in the north of England.
True to their concept, the resulting photographs are dappled with soft lighting, the pale bodies a contrast to the dark water they sit in. “Some of the first images I took ten years ago were with [Vex],” Vicki explains, “it’s really valuable to have those creative connections that last.”
Featured in Modern Weekly China, Vicki’s series Tangents, created alongside stylist Katie Burnett, embodies a similar calming and muted aesthetic. “I had this idea of the women in the images to be pioneering on an exploration of this in-between space, somewhere between life and fantasy, or an unknown planet where no one else has been before,” she explains. Throughout the story, models lounge in draping fabric while targeted lighting catches the curves of their body or the glint of jewellery. “I was thinking about exploring unknown spaces at night, timelessness, hope and depression; it’s more about a feeling than a literal interpretation of something,” Vicki adds.
Whether working for a client or exploring a side project, it’s this concept of being “in-between” that ties Vicki’s imagery together. “Photography is somewhere between real life and a total lie, which you can bend as much as you see fit,” Vicki offers. “That’s something that fascinates me and is a big influence on the way I approach making images. I like the idea that the people in my photographs are experiencing or exploring, they aren’t just there being looked at, most often its more exciting when it’s a heightened version of real life.”
About the Author
Ruby joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in September 2017 after graduating from the Graphic Communication Design course at Central Saint Martins. In April 2018, she became a staff writer and in August 2019, she was made associate editor. Get in contact with Ruby about ideas you may have for long-form stories on the site.