Chloe Gaget

Father Figure

From the ages of 10 to 16, it felt as if I was living under the reign of a dictator. DICKtator as I called him.

Alcohol consumed his life and mine. From taking my door off of the hinges, to throwing temper tantrums, and keeping me home from school or sports for discipline, this was my “father figure".

My family was stuck in a situation that was hard to get out of.

He was aggressive, controlling, and a liar. Nobody knew of the abuse that was going on behind closed doors.

My mother’s ex-boyfriend always said I would never forget him and I would someday thank him for all that he did “for” me. The only thing I can thank him for is what he did TO me. He only showed me how strong I am.


Photography runs through my veins. I was constantly surrounded by it. Photoshoots on the weekends, trips to MILK Studios, and going through contact sheets with my father. It was magic. At the age of 9, he made it all disappear.

My parents got divorced and he moved to France. I have not seen him since.

I have recreated the photographs that I have access to from the internet or original prints that my father had left behind. I studied his photographs everyday trying to figure out how to recreate his complex lighting and emulate professional makeup artist’s work.

I wish I had known photography would be my passion at the time, I have so many questions to ask him.