Nude: Strength and Vulnerability




Last year’s Life Framer Series Award winner Justine Tjallinks tells us the story behind her beautiful, thoughtful series ‘Nude’.

She finds herself navigating a world that is full of challenges and prejudice to overcome. Living with albinism not only means an absence of pigmentation in the skin and hair, but also impairment in vision. Not allowing herself to be dispirited she goes about her business like any other, propelled forward by inner strength. We all fight our battles, with the difference being that she wears her vulnerability on the outside for all to see. The preconceived opinion being that she is frail.

Nude explores the duality between the vulnerability and strength within oneself. The soft colour palette represents the vulnerability, whilst the strength and determination is found in the body language.


Where the idea came from

It was a documentary about Miriam de Boer that sparked the idea for ‘Nude’. The documentary followed Miriam through her daily life whilst coping with her disability. It showed a strong, determined woman that wouldn’t be denied reaching her goals, rather than a frail girl needing help. This is when I first saw the beauty in the juxtaposition of strength and frailty.
I was like a dog with a bone, wanting to shoot Miriam so badly that I really put in the work to track her down. When I eventually got in contact it didn’t take much to convince her since I felt so passionately about the project. Shooting someone else was never an option as it was her as a person that I was drawn to.