One of our absolute favorites since long is Dutch photographer Viviane Sassen who belongs to a group of photographers who successfully seem to have found the perfect balance between editorial and commercial work (for the Vogue editions and what have you?!) and beautiful campaigns for the likes of Missoni and ACNE on the one hand and her own art practice on the other. Photographers with dual overlapping practices is by no means unique; another contemporary favorite that springs to mind is Swedish photographer Julia Hetta who's enjoyed quite a bit of success in recent years with her distinctive Vermeer-reminiscent portrait photography.

What distinguishes Sassen's work is her keen eye for bold colors and patterns and the way she's able to create the most fascinating shapes by manipulating and directing the human body, making it appear so effortlessly done. Oh, and not to forget her total command of light, creating stunning patterns through mere shadow play. Also noteworthy, is that her practice presents a foray into her own roots and childhood years as she opts to largely shoot in remote locations in Africa. Sassen who spent parts of her early years in Kenya where her dad had a medical practice, once said in an interview with the Guardian that her memories from Africa have had a lasting impact on her work. "To me, Africa is vivid colors and strong contrasts of light and dark... I remember looking at women and children sitting under the trees sheltering from the sun and, even as a child, seeing these graphic patterns".

To find out more about Viviane Sassen, click here or visit her website.