Video: The Alchemy of Inspiration

Video: The Alchemy of Inspiration

What Inspires Me
and How I Make it Into Art

Video by Bronwen Hazlett

‘The Alchemy of Inspiration’ is a video I made to explain the process I go through to make images for my series ‘Midlife and The Alchemy of My Individuation.’ I begin by photographing the rural landscapes of Delaware that brought peace to my everyday life. These landscapes are the story board where I add self portraits to illustrate my journey through the practice of Philosophical Alchemy.

Philosophical Alchemy is about learning to face negative aspects of oneself, replace them with positivity to move forward, and find the secret to living your life. During the process of mixing cyanotype and Van Dyke brown chemistries together, I related the interactions between the two to relationships and periods of my life. Sometimes they worked beautifully together and other times one overpowered the other process. To me this signified the past conflicts in my life and my desire to control the seemingly uncontrollable. In Philosophical Alchemy, the more you practice purification and self-awareness, the clearer your mind and direction become. In Photographic Alchemy, practice does not create perfection but greater understanding and control over the process of making art.” —Bronwen Hazlett

Music: “Fitzpleasure” by Alt-J is CC 3.0 at

Bronwen Hazlett is from many places but nowhere specific. Her dad was a career Navy doctor who took her family from Japan, to the Mid-Atlantic states, and back to Japan again before she went to art school. She graduated from Maryland Institute College of Art in ’92 with her BFA in Photography as well as an MFA in Photography from Academy of the Arts University. She has had many different careers, such as a jewelry designer, publishing company graphic designer, an “in-house” advertising agency photographer, a “stay-at-home” Mom, freelance photographer, graphic and web designer, design firm office manager, an adjunct photography professor, and now a high school Graphic Design Teacher.

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