INTERVIEW

ARTIST SERIES:
CINTHYA SILVERSTEIN

Our Oddbird Artist series was born at the onset of the pandemic. It was a way for us to not only support incredible artists we love by profiling them and sharing their work but also to hopefully inspire our community on their own journey of creativity, finding new rhythms in uncertain times, and the healing act of making art.

Now, as we return to the new 'normal' of life, we want to continue to inspire and support, injecting art into the wonderful world around us.

One woman who strives to not only live life as an art, but encourages thoughtfulness and intention in the work puts out, is creative powerhouse and mama of 3, film shooter, Cinthya Silverstein.

Like many of the great film photographers that she draws inspiration from such as Carrie Mae Weems and Sally Mann before her, Cinthya's body of work perfectly captures still life, the beauty found the everyday moments, while intimately documenting her most tender and important subjects... her children.

Now, taking her incredible knack for capturing the essence of her subjects outside of her home, we are so excited to talk with Cinthya about her much-anticipated journey into portraiture and making art for a living ♥️

Q. Who are you and where are you headed?

A. Oof. What a question. It’s taken me a long time to answer with “I’m an artist” and not begin my response to these kinds of questions with “I’m a mother.” I love being a mother, more than I thought I would honestly, but there is something really empowering when coming into your artistic practice with confidence and it has taken me a long time to do so. So, with that said, my name is Cinthya and I am a photographer and artist. The future is uncertain but I think I’m beginning to see that I’m headed in the right direction.


Q. How did you find your calling with photography?

A. I think it just happened. I spent a lot of time thinking it was a hobby that I could maybe use in my intended career as an Anthropologist, but photography always took center stage. Then it just became the thing that made the most sense to me. Living my life without a camera didn’t seem like an option after a certain point.

Q. Why film? Why Black and White?

A. The easy answer is that film is how I got started capturing the world around me. I was lucky enough to spend most of my high school years in a dark room. I was hooked pretty quickly with the practice of capturing something and seeing it come alive, sometimes days later, like magic, in a pan of liquid. Once my eye was trained to see in gradients of black and white I was able to see light differently. It’s still my default to see light that way, which makes shooting in color a constant experiment. There is so much nuance in the contrast and all the greys in between.

Q. Tell me more about your purpose of capturing purposefully and with intention?

A. This is something that shooting film taught me and that I have carried with me. It takes time and intention to capture something when you have limited resources like only 36 frames. But also, my background in Anthropology (I have a BA from UCLA) really instilled in me the importance of observation and the sense of understanding your surroundings by really intentionally paying attention. It’s a meditative practice for me now. When I get to capture moments as they unfold, it’s the purposefulness that creates a feedback loop through which I can change my perspective to come to a different conclusion. Sometimes, capturing certain moments with intentionality can also confirm what I already believed, but being purposeful leaves the work open to all sorts of possibilities. It’s really a great approach to getting to know your subjects and really listening to their body language and whatever conversation you may be engaged in while you’re capturing them.

Q. If you weren’t capturing images, what do you suppose you’d be doing with your time?

A. I honestly have no idea. Being a mother certainly, but I can’t imagine not making images. Maybe I would have become a painter, or I would have focused on my writing to be a storyteller. The world is so big and so full of so much. I feel strongly about seeing it all, capturing it, enjoying it, but mostly learning about and understanding the human condition.

work by Cinthya Silverstein on film
Cinthya shot by @stefannagram for Oddbird, wearing the Altin Robe

Q. If you could be anywhere in the world, where would you be and what would you be doing?

A. If I could be anywhere, I would be home. My birthplace- Tepic, Nayarit. Everytime I return, it really feels like home even though I only spent my first 6 years of life there. There is so much history and so many stories that I don’t know. I would love to get to know the city, the surrounding villages and explore my family’s history there. It’s an interesting place to see the passage of time. So much changes between every visit, I keep wondering what that looks like in real time.

Q. What is the one thing you hope to instill in your children when they are one day an adult?

A. The most important thing I want to instill in them is the importance of conversation. How to be active listeners and how important it is to talk to people, especially to those they might not agree with.

Self portraits by Cinthya, wearing our Kardeş Loungewear set in Marigold


ARTISTS I'M LOVING...

INSPIRED LISTENING…

Enjoy Cinthya’s curated playlist, made especially for our Oddbird Family!


LOVE CINTHYA’S LOUNGEWEAR? YOU MIGHT ALSO LOVE…

Kardeş Loungewear in Lale

The Selin Dress in Kahve

The Aydin House Dress in Marigold