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Ukrainian model, dancer, and performer Diana Helzina at TheClaw Paris found herself stuck in the City of Light when the world went into lockdown due to coronavirus putting the life as she knew it into a standstill. Plans changed, travels cancelled and a whole new lifestyle to adapt to; these were some of the trials Diana - and the rest of the world - had to face while braving this unprecedented time.

Diana found herself alone and away from home, and to make things more challenging, her birthday was approaching as we entered April. Helzina was never afraid of not being home for her birthday, yet, she found herself thinking about the people she left back home. Diana was saddened by the lack of real connection and the absence of her loved ones. However, this young creative found a way to creatively fight against loneliness and boredom while adapting to the new reality.

Admittedly, Diana knew she wasn't a photographer or creative director, yet, she came up with an isolation project that would explore the so-called social-distancing while producing some cool and rather impressive images that perfectly narrate her birthday in isolation. As a model, Diana knows her field of work and how to make things happen. As a photographer, however, she went by what she felt was right moving fully by instinct. On the experience, Diana shares that "being everything on a shoot (model, creative director, and photographer) was harder than expected, but much more interesting and exciting once the work was completed."

Her idea was to create something new, something that would capture both sides of a phone call between two friends. She went on to document her birthday in lockdown where she spent the day with also model Adam De La Tour (TheClaw Paris). They documented their video call which started in the morning and went on to end in the evening where they display a gloomy look as they reflect on the day. For Diana, this is raw and honest and portrays their emotions in a simple yet effective way. She states; "it’s different from other distance projects I have seen so far. There is no photographer behind a camera but there is a story, an array of emotions that can still be captured."

Diana describes the project as being a "one-day story about a birthday celebration from a distance looking at both sides of a phone call."

Photography and art director: Diana Helzine

Models: Diana Helzina and Adam De La Tour

Agencies: TheClaw Models and Rush Models

Special thanks to 1K Paris for being open for us and for others during this hard times and friend Kate who helped with this project remotely.


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