Rachel Hulin: Hey Harry Hey Matilda

Sep 18, 2015
Photographer Spotlight

Providence, Rhode Island-based photographer Rachel Hulin's fine art is in a world of its own; her images often transcend reality and border on fantasy. From her Flying Henry project, to the muted, ethereal images in her Thirty-five and One series, Rachel isn't one to shy away from trying new things with her photography. Her most recent endeavor, Hey Harry Hey Matilda, is her most innovative idea yet. 

Hey Harry Hey Matilda is full-length novel (with pictures) written as an intimate online conversation between twins. The most interesting aspect of the project? The novel is interactive: parts of the conversation are released daily on the @heyharryheymatilda Instagram account, and readers can scan through the words, pictures and character bios in part one on a dedicated website.

Rachel has long been fascinated by boy/girl twins. In fact, the project was started because she had always wanted to write a story as a back-and-forth between siblings.

I was actually writing another book when my agent remembered the Hey Harry Hey Matilda project and encouraged me to make it into a full length novel. Three years later, I was finished writing and realized the story would be enhanced with imagery. So I started gathering and shooting pictures for it and then built the current site.

Since the original blog was created five years ago, the story has grown into an approximately 200-page novel with an interesting twist (spoiler alert): the paternal twins are in love. Rachel says the work is very fictional, but Matilda's character serves as an amalgam of many women she knew when she lived in Brooklyn in her 20s. As the story came together, Rachel had the difficult (but enjoyable) task of casting the characters and scouting locations that reflected the story she had been writing about for so long:

Casting was so much fun, and something I'd really never done before as a photographer. I was sort of scouting all summer and ended up with friends (and friends of friends). The locations had been in my mind all along, so I re-visited some special places and also was able to draw from a pretty large archive I've collected over the years.

Her future plans for the project?

Total world domination, of course. I'm actually really excited for people to meet Harry and Matilda, it's been such a long time coming. I have a lot of ideas about how the characters can interact with the readers that I'm very excited to explore.

Interested in following along? You can get your daily dose of Harry and Matilda on Instagram, read part one on the website, check out behind-the-scenes goodies on tumblr or subscribe for fun newsletters.

Check out more of Rachel's work on her website, rachelhulin.com.

Tags: fine art hey harry hey matilda providence photographer rachel hulin rhode island photographer