“I Shine Brighter Now” Photography by Reylia Slaby

When I was twenty years old, me and my team found ourselves in the police station, separately being interrogated in a tiny room at 10pm at night. We had been there for six hours, being asked question after question. We each also had our very own good cop/bad cop. My frustration and embarrassment piled up with each tick of the clock. “Surely, this isn’t how a photographer’s career is supposed to go.”

And it shouldn’t have been. But you see, I got myself into a sticky situation. Turns out we weren’t supposed to be taking pictures in that area of…


Design the life that you want, and one you can love

Archived Photography by Reylia Slaby (Author)

Plump tears streamed down my cheeks as I hid in the bathroom at my first photography exhibition. I had spent weeks preparing for this day, only to be sitting huddled up in the corner, bewildered by how my body was speaking to me. Why is this happening? I whispered between abbreviated breaths.

I held my face and my chest, making sure I kept my hyperventilation at bay. I sat next to the sink, with a full view of my burning face in the mirror, skin stained red with salt.

In intervals, my friends and family would poke their heads through…


poetry from my notebook

Photography by Reylia Slaby (Author)

I don’t bite, I whispered with spread arms
I reached out with contemporary lightning
Fingers and toes tingled at the static, a familiarity dawned
My body has told me that this has happened before

My blood is now coiled with unrequited adoration
We live in an age where the masses fear to feel
For to love more than you are loved makes you the fool
How dare you lean in first to kiss the broken world

Don’t confuse my joy at your face for obsession Flower petals don’t guide the paths you walk But how can…


Loving those with a creative soul

Photography by Reylia Slaby (Author)

Artists believe the whole universe lives inside them. Through the centuries we stand witness to the power of an individual image or a single sentence and have seen incredible forces at work that orchestrate powerful movements.

Human beings throughout history have gone through so many wondrous things because of art, and it can feel almost impossible that we aren’t assisted by something beyond us. We offer up our bodies to be the catalyst.

Putting aside how complex being in love is, the affection that the artist holds can be a glittering mosaic that can be demanding to decipher. All artists…


Honest musings from a creative

Self Portrait by Reylia Slaby (Author)

Reposted from a 2018 diary

Fear seems to be a big part of why I don’t create. Over the years, my own fears have eroded my desire to create and to push on. It is a strange thing, to be so in love with your craft, but to be terrified of it once you are faced with it.

One afternoon I was sitting in Starbucks. My time there was one continuous sigh. I go here to get away, to find time to relax, to allow my brain a release and a chance to recharge. …


Changing the narrative of the inner critic, and learning graciously from the outward ones.

“To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.”
Elbert Hubbard

“I didn’t like your porn video.” — A message last year

For those that follow my work, it may be obvious that I don’t work within the adult industry. In this particular instance, I had struck a chord with a semi-nude Fine Art photoshoot I had worked on, and felt its echo in my ear for weeks after.

As children, when we come to understand language, we quickly realize that the world doesn't always have kind things to bestow upon us. We all cope with this harsh reality…


A love letter to those embarking on the creative path

Photography by Reylia Slaby (Author)

Dear Young Artist,

Hello there. Why don't you take a load off before we begin? Would you like a glass of water? I want you to be comfortable before I tell you what there is to know about being an artist. I hope you are sitting down for this. I know I am.

We artists live in hidden spaces

I want you to know that the arts are indeed romantic. There is something extraordinary about this realm. We artists live in hidden spaces, we pound from underneath the crust of the earth and create vibrations that shake the world. We are movers and believers. …


In the age of selfies, what is left?

Self Portrait by Reylia Slaby

On the momentous occasion that you place a camera in front of you and the shutter is pressed, an array of emotions may chaperon the act. A nagging discomfort may erupt inside, tensing your arms, and curling and twitching your lip.

To subdue the awkwardness, you tilt your face at an angle, your best side. Hiding insecurities with your palms, cupping your chin in a nonchalant pose. In this moment you suddenly can’t feel any more unlike yourself. Really, what should I do with my hands?

Turning to the camera screen, you are bewildered after being faced with your face…


For me, all it took was picking up a camera

“Surrounded By Emptiness” Photography by Reylia Slaby

The Breakup

I knew it was past midnight the moment he broke up with me. The moon was bright that night, and illuminated the entirety of the room, casting shadows onto bare walls.

I cried deeply into my pillow as my now ex-boyfriend lay in the bed opposite to mine. He held his phone in his hand, the light from the screen bright on his face, texting the person who would become his next girlfriend.

He had been chatting with her for several months on the last leg of our relationship, and I didn’t want to believe it had meant anything more…


“We Are Stardust” Photography by Reylia Slaby

How much glitter does it take to cover a fish?

That is one question I have never asked myself before, but it come up on this shoot. Does it take two packs of glitter? Three? There wasn’t a google search for this, surely.

Sometimes you cannot predict how some shoots will start or end. Sometimes things spontaneously reveal themselves to you. That is how it felt this day. Everything fell beautifully into place, and everything happened as it was meant to be for me.

How much glitter does it take to cover a fish?

I loved every element, everything that…

Reylia Slaby

Reylia Slaby is a Fine Art photographer, writing about her love for creating, and how others can use art in their lives reyliaslaby.com | Insta @reylia.slaby

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