The Photographic Journal

She Belongs

Essay 224 • Nov 22nd 2017

I enjoy photographing women I am inspired by. Mominatu is one of them. We met a few months ago and within minutes felt like we’ve known each other for years. I was intrigued the moment she mentioned she had lived in Puerto Rico for the last two years. While in Puerto Rico she pursued a modeling career and signed with an agency. Mominatu had just decided to move to NY about a week before I met her in April. Since then she has struggled with a feeling of belonging. She misses her life in Puerto Rico but feels New York can offer her more opportunities as a model. She realized she felt homesick because she didn’t know herself. She began to let people in and slowly but surely began to feel like she belonged someplace, and it was that feeling I wanted to explore with my portraits of her.


Armelis D’Orville is a portrait and lifestyle photographer from Queens, NY. Inspired by the women she photographs, she aims to capture their stories through her work. Currently she is working on a personal project titled Own Your Pajón in which she explores how Latina women are confidently embracing their natural hair.

Website | Instagram

Model: Mominatu Boog