By Caitlin O'Connor and George Ballenger
Asymmetric Magazine: Tell us about your photo series.
Caitlin O'Connor: This photo series was a collaboration between myself and my boyfriend, George Ballenger. I call it, "Bathtub Blues." While I was shooting this series with George at my home in the Hollywood Hills, I was imagining an experience of a breakup. I wanted to portray a somber, yet contemplative feeling behind the photos. I was interested in being sexy, yet full of sadness.
AM: What inspires you most?
CO: [As an actress and model,] I am inspired by powerful and sexy women. I admire women in the entertainment industry who portray badass female archetypes like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Lucille Ball, Wonderwoman, and Bond girls who own their strength and sex appeal!
George Ballenger: Inspiration as a photographer comes from all angles of life for me; from landscapes to the human body. I love to explore nature. Things are natural and things that are man-made create a broad spectrum for me to become inspired; there's so much beauty in life to stop and ponder. I love the challenge in capturing the perfect angle with the perfect light to give the right feeling that I want to portray in my photos.
AM: What role does Southern California play in your work?
CO: SoCal is a crazy and beautiful place to live and work. Every town limit within Los Angeles has a different expression of what "LA" is. It's a city of perpetual, fast-paced change. It's such an exciting place.
AM: What themes do you pursue in your work?
CO: The themes we pursue actively in our work as a team are: beauty - naturally, and manmade in nature, human emotions and the range of feeling within a photo, and combining strength with sex appeal. As a woman in entertainment, I try to inspire others to own their sexuality and to not be ashamed of feeling powerful. I want to empower women to be bold and follow their dreams in an exciting way!
AM: What are the benefits and challenges of collaborating as a couple?
CO: It's so exciting to work with your significant other...Dating a photographer certainly works to my advantage because I feel so comfortable with him. We are able to get some amazing photos together! We both want the best out of the projects we work on, and we both strive to get it. We won't stop till we believe we have gotten "the shot." One of the challenges we face is knowing when to stop! We just keep shooting because we enjoy it so much!
AM: What else can we expect to see from you?
CO: We are very excited by the technological advances we have and those which will come in the very near future! With virtual reality on the cusp of exploding into every household and the new tech for "augmented reality" starting its boom, we are expanding our modes of creating art and photography into a whole new experience. George can't wait to show you his new work in VR and AR!
George Ballenger is a director of photography by trade and a photographer by hobby. He currently works on a television show called Last Man on Earth in the camera department. He is from Oklahoma and has lived in Los Angeles for 8 years, currently residing in Hollywood. You can find more of his work at georgeballenger.com.
Caitlin O'Connor is an actress and model who was born in Los Angeles and raised near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She currently resides in Hollywood and is best known for her work with Maxim magazine. She was recently a cast member on the series finale of Two and a Half Men and can be seen in the new film Southpaw. You can find more of her work at caitlinoconnor.me.