The Art of the Personal Project is a crucial element to let potential buyers see how you think creatively on your own.  I am drawn to personal projects that have an interesting vision or that show something I have never seen before.  In this thread, I’ll include a link to each personal project with the artist statement so you can see more of the project. Please note: This thread is not affiliated with any company; I’m just featuring projects that I find.  Please DO NOT send me your work.  I do not take submissions.

Today’s featured artist:  The Rathkopfs


JESSE AND THE RED BALLOON by Anna, Jordan and Jesse Rathkopf

“Jesse and the Red Balloon” is a collaboration with our son Jesse that delves into the profound impact of isolation on the mental well-being of young children during the pandemic. This photographic journey explores a child’s perspective on a rapidly changing world and delves into how parents can create a sense of security amid uncertainty.

Inspired by the timeless tale of The Red Balloon/Le Ballon Rouge by Albert Lamorisse, our project pays homage to the original narrative. Unbeknownst to us initially, the little boy in the story was Albert’s son, adding a poignant layer to our exploration.

To tailor our story to Jesse’s emotions, who felt sad by the bullied child in the original The Red Balloon/La Ballon Rouge, we co-created our narrative, focusing on places he wanted to visit and showcasing a world where “the child” is accompanied by his “Red Balloon” friend in search of fun and exploration despite the harrowing circumstances.

Navigating the desolate streets of NYC during the COVID-19 crisis, we couldn’t shield Jesse from the trauma unfolding around us – neighbors in masks on food lines, closed establishments, and, in one of the most densely populated cities, Jesse often stood as the sole child in sight. Yet, instead of shielding him, our collaboration became a source of strength. The resulting images encapsulate the interplay between internal psychological dynamics and external realities. They navigate a spectrum, alternating between moments of playfulness and the poignant solitude portrayed in each photograph.

To see more of this project, click here


APE contributor Suzanne Sease currently works as a consultant for photographers and illustrators around the world.  She has been involved in the photography and illustration advertising and in-house corporate industry for decades.  After establishing the art-buying department at The Martin Agency, then working for Kaplan-Thaler, Capital One, Best Buy and numerous smaller agencies and companies, she decided to be a consultant in 1999.  Follow her at @SuzanneSease.  Instagram

Recommended Posts