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Stassia de Veux
I’m a walking contradiction. That’s always been the best way to describe me. I have an intense passion for nearly all aspects of life, and I carry that passion into my photography daily. I’m a Russian-Armenian woman born and raised in Southern California, and I work at a dance studio while also pursuing my photography career. If I could inspire one person throughout my lifetime to embrace every inch of themselves, even the imperfections, because they indeed are a gift, I would consider that an achievement. In a world where we are criticised daily, and complimented rarely, I want one person to believe me when I say; you’re exquisite. Just the way you are.
I grew up in what most would consider ‘a broken home’. Though I would like to pretend this isn’t the norm, it seems as though it has become just that-and I assume most could relate. I grew up in a semi-abusive environment, and I say semi because it was only one parent and extended family.
I struggled with my self-confidence the majority of my youth. I’ve always been the different one within my community. Growing up Armenian generally means you’re not a woman covered in tattoos and piercings. You don’t dye your hair multi-colour, you aren’t outside of the Christian faith, and you’re not gay...I am all of these things and more. I’ve never fit in; I never really felt accepted, but I’ve never wanted to. I used photography as an escape. It helped me hone everything about myself that people told me was wrong, and all of my confusion about my childhood, and turn it into something beautiful. I owe that to my Mother and Brother because they pushed me so hard to find that outlet and never let me feel like I couldn’t achieve my dreams.
I have always seen beauty in all things; namely, that which most would look past because it doesn’t fall into the neat category of ‘beauty standards’. I think that stemmed from all of my struggles in my youth, and I hope with all my heart that I never lose that quality. I aspire to inspire change-in whatever capacity that may be. We so desperately need more people who believe in themselves and each other. To embrace the differences within us all and celebrate them instead of berating each other for them. Nobody is less than. Nobody is alone in their struggles. We seem to forget that we all have our issues, and one grievance should never be compared to another. We are all in this together.
Photographer: Stassia de Veux
Photo 1 Model: Stassia de Veux (Self Portrait)
Photo 2 Model: Stassia de Veux (Self Portrait)
Photo 3 Model: Sonja Wheeler
Photo 4 Model: Sonja Wheeler
Photo 5 Model: Arianna Mendoza
Photo 6 Model: Arianna Mendoza
Photo 7 Model: Nicolette Adelshian
Photo 8 Model: Nicolette Adelshian
Photo 9 Model: Sonja Wheeler
Photo 10 Model: Sonja Wheeler