Small Talk is a photography collective comprised of seven women: Audra Osborne, Briana Cerezo, Jennifer Timmer Trail, Kelli Pennington, Kristina Hruska, Leslie Hickey, and Marico Fayre. The collective formed in Portland, Oregon in 2015.
As a group, we explore the nature of what it means to be a visual storyteller, pool resources, provide support and critique, and facilitate community events and discussions. We engage in the best kind of “small talk,” that which binds us together both as a collective and within a larger community of women and minority artists, fostering stronger work and collaboration. Our first book, We’re Always Touching by Underground Wires, was published in April 2018.
Audra Osborne is a photographer and crafter living in Portland, Oregon. Her work stems from the often debilitating emotions she (and many people) feel on a daily basis. These ideas typically center around anxiety, depression, and loss. Her photographs act as a visual diary and study of these emotions, as well as a remedy. By creating these images she has created a space for herself and others to discuss these "taboo" topics on an open platform. This self-enforced openness has allowed her to become more in control of her anxiety, beyond systems and treatments.
Audra graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design in 2011 with a BFA in photography and has been living in and loving Portland ever since. Her work has be published and exhibited nationally. She owns a small photobooth company called Party Cat! and also currently works as the Program Manager for the photography nonprofit, Photolucida.
Briana utilizes photography as a process of discovery. Making photographs offers opportunities to deeply study those things in life that she finds most perplexing -- namely people, the nature of relationships, creative process, spirituality, philosophy, and the inner workings of the self. Photography allows her the opportunity to reflect and organize fragments of her experiences in order to make sense of the world and her role in it.
Briana's editorial and documentary photographs have been featured in newspapers and magazines such as Portland Monthly, Willamette Week, Portland Mercury, Fraction, Ain't-Bad and The New Asterisk, and her artwork has been exhibited in galleries throughout the Pacific Northwest. In 2017, she was awarded an artist residency with Oregon Historical Society to interview and photograph members of diverse and underrepresented populations throughout Oregon.
JENNIFER TIMMER TRAIL
Originally from Northern Michigan, Jennifer spent over a decade in New York, and some time in Copenhagen and Victoria, BC, before recently settling in Portland, Oregon. Life circumstances have kept her far from the idyllic small town she still calls home, and this has played a crucial role in the development of her work. Her photographs explore the longings that exist within relationships, things we wish we could hold on to but can’t, and the nostalgia that accompanies the process of aging. She is most interested exploring and pushing the boundaries of what a photograph can communicate on an emotional and psychological level.
Jennifer received her MFA in Photography from Hartford Art School and her BA in Art History / Studio Art / Natural Science from Michigan State University. She is currently an instructor of photography, design, and publication production, and her work has been written about and exhibited internationally.
Sometimes playing a role for the camera allows Kelli to feel outside of herself. Other times it forces her to feel her skin tautly strung over her bones. She sees herself in her mind's eye and feels fragile and human. That vulnerability is as thrilling as it is terrifying.
Kristina Hruska is a photographer living in Portland, Oregon. Her photographic work explores the themes of mystery and resilience and often speaks to the intersection between the ordinary and the extraordinary. Her photography has been shown in galleries across North America and are held in private collections across the globe.
Kristina has worked as the Education Director for Newspace Center for Photography in Portland, OR, Photo Workshops Director at Rocky Mountain School of Photography in Missoula, MT, and as an Editor for Diffusion: Unconventional Photography Magazine. Currently, she is the Gallery Director for Pushdot Studio Gallery, also located in Portland. She is the Founder of Small Talk Collective.
Leslie Hickey lives and works in Portland, Oregon. She earned BA degrees in Studio Art and English from Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington. Her photographic work has been exhibited regularly, including a solo show at the Jules Maidoff Gallery at Studio Arts College International in Florence, Italy. Last October, she returned to Italy, travelling to Civita di Bagnoregio for a fellowship through The Civita Institute. In June she will mount another solo show at Edel Extra in Nuremberg, Germany. Her work can be found in the recent edition of Big Big Wednesday and at Essentialist, an online magazine. She is a founding member of Small Talk and also SCALENO, an international photographic collective. Leslie is also proprietor of a letterpress, Hoarfrost Press.
Marico Fayre is a photographic artist whose work explores vulnerability, aloneness, mental illness, LGBTQ identity, the search for belonging, and the dialogue that occurs between making and experiencing art. Her work has been described as visual poetry and her drive to create both encompasses and challenges notions of beauty.
Marico often collaborates with performance artists and writers, weaving together the two voices in order to create projects of depth and strength. She teaches workshops and mentors MFA students, incorporating her background in branding, project management, and creative direction, to support and teach the business side of being an artist. Her combination of determination, efficiency, and calm lead one client to describe her style as, “doing wild things very quietly.”
A gypsy at heart, she travels as often as possible in order to continue challenging how she sees the world and what she is able to discover with her camera.