Greer Deerling

The Moth Queen

Before I met with each of the artists I worked with on this series, I asked them to think about what themes and ideas they were currently trying to express in their music. When I met with Greer on the back patio of the Gelateria on South Grand, on a beautiful sunny day, she told me that she felt her theme was death. Greer has lost two women who were very important to her in the last few years, and dealing with those deaths has obviously impacted every facet of her life.

If you know Greer you know that she loves everything dark, mysterious and witchy, so I knew we'd want a fairly dramatic concept, and since she has a beautiful death's head moth tattoo on her right arm, we talked about incorporating the symbolism of the moth into the shoot.

The location we chose for this shot has special significance—this is the backyard of the Cherokee-area house her band uses for practice. In the yard is a large patch of fennel, planted by Anne Tkach before her death in 2015. (Anne was the partner of one of Greer's band members.) The fennel patch has since gone wild and spread throughout the yard. I shot Greer in the middle of it, also looking wild and a little feral, like a mysterious creature you might catch sight of in the woods and hurriedly try to capture on film before she disappears. 

I loved working with Greer on this concept and shoot, and I think we captured the spirit of death, rebirth and wildness that we aimed for.

Model: Greer Deerling - Baby Baby Dance with Me

Costume: Model's own

Makeup: Gina Peters

See more of this series here.

Here are a few outtakes from our session that I particularly enjoyed, and below that a short behind-the-scenes video of the making of the image.

Portrait Photography Musician

The Making of the Moth Queen