Sam Thies lives and works in Australia as a visual artist, specialising in photography and film production.
His latest portraiture series, Village of Paradise, follows an anthropological journey through the remote villages of Oro Provence, Papua New Guinea, exploring the intersection of an ancient culture in a modern world.
"The scenery was so remarkable it felt unnatural to be masking it off with our portable white studio, but as we assembled the willing subjects from the nearby village and began our session, it soon became obvious why I had chosen this method. There was so much story to be read on their faces, bodies and clothing.
The isolation created by the white background enhanced their personal narratives removing the distraction of the surrounding environment. Any vulnerability or strength of character was exposed, revealing unique personalities with every portrait. Beyond the needs of our project the portable studio became a meeting place, a talking point and an instrument to start a face to face conversation with our new friends."
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