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Vitoria Leona Photographs Individuals who Promote Self-Acceptance

18 year old photographer Vitoria Leona, from Belém, Brasil, tries to communicate self-acceptance in her photography. She states, "I try to photograph normal people, not models who don't correspond with the faces and bodies we see on the streets in our daily life. I photograph my friends, the teenagers in my city, people around me, they're real and so is my work."

"I started photography six years ago, but I've been doing portraits since 2014, and have been really lucky to have my work acknowledged in my country and internationally. I was inspired to get into photography by my uncle, who is a photographer. Since I started, (in 2011) I've been doing a lot of workshops and studying photography. When I first started doing portraits I was using an analogue camera, (I still shoot with analogue and I love it) but now I'm more into digital photography."

On this photo series, she says, "I went to Lisbon for one month and was lucky to collaborate with young people who live there. The charismatic model in these photos is Stef Brown, he works as a model and works in a store in Lisbon. When I photograph someone, most of the time I get inspiration from the person's style, and it is no different with Stef, who has such a unique style. We took the photos in downtown Lisbon, where he often hangs out."

On the reception of her work, "sometimes is really surprising to me to hear people talk about my work and how good and inspiring it is, and how it has touched them, certainly these people see much more in my photography than I'm able to, because I just do what I do to, with love."

Photography: Vitoria Leona

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