Jo is 21 and suffers from bulimia, a kind of eating disorder. Her obsession is not about being thin; it’s about not gaining weight, in spite of the huge amount of food that she ingests every day. Bulimia has taken all her time and money, and also her passion: dance. “If I was not bulimic I would be dancing like before – Jo says – But ballet is about elegance and perfection, and I’m a crap person in the middle of chaos”. She doesn’t look overweight and she hates her body and can’t see herself in leggings in front of a mirror anymore. She also thinks that her addiction is ‘disgusting’. That’s why she never told anyone – not even her boyfriend – about it. For some reason, she decided to open herself to me.
Laia Abril, 25, is a documentary photographer raised in Barcelona. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and studied photography through different workshops and master classes, including at the ICP in New York City. She began working on documentary projects in the Balkans, covering the 13th Funeral of Srebrenica and the Independence of Kosovo, first for a Spanish NGO and then for Spanish newspapers. At the same time she was combining photography with her communication career as the Press Coordinator of World Press Photo 2008. In 2009 and 2010 she was a finalist of the Ian Parry Scholarship, participating in the exhibition at the Getty Images Gallery in London both years, first with her project on the young lesbian community in Brooklyn, and then with the project ‘The Last Cabaret’ about a porno sex club in Barcelona. Her work has been featured in magazines including Ojo de Pez, The Sunday Times magazine, and COLORS magazine amongst others, and has been recognized with various emerging photographer scholarships and exhibitions in Spain and Italy. With her projects, Laia tries to approach intimate stories and portray her particular vision of the daily life of the characters she encounters. She is mostly interested in personal and female stories, where the characters have been struggling to have a 'normal' life. Her intention is for people to see themselves in her work, and discover a different point of view of alternate realities that are sometimes too close to us for us to acknowledge, but are also important and worth examining. Most recently she was Editor-In-Chief and photographer of the dance issue of COLORS magazine, and was awarded a second FABRICA scholarship to develop a personal photo project over the next year. Laia Abril became an Emerging Talent on Reportage by Getty images in November 2010. You can also visit her personal website: www.laiaabril.com