September 08, 1997

Two Models in the Rain (Schoodic Point, Maine)

The biggest difficulty with working with the nude outdoors is that the weather seldom co-operates - either it's too sunny, or too cool, or threatening rain - or even raining. On this particular morning, Ellen, who had modeled for me a week before, and Cass, who I'd met shortly there-after, had got together to work with me - but it was threatening rain.
4"x5" film
Ever optimistic, we set off in the car - directly into the rain. Grasping at straws, we went all the way to the the coast, only to find it shrouded in rain and fog. I wanted to call it quits, but both Ellen and Cass were determined not to let the rain prevent the day from moving ahead, so after buying some cheap plastic rain-gear, and weather-proofing the camera-gear as much as possible (wrapping film-holders in a plastic bag) we set off to work. It must have been quite a sight, two nude models clambering around on cold, wet rocks as I struggled to keep the rain off the camera,frame the images and direct the models.
4"x5" film
The coastline where we photographed was incredible - the jagged rocks and stone beaches were a paradise to image in. Working as quickly as I could, I managed to make a good 20 images before the models finally gave up being stubborn and admitted they were cold. The work though, was well worth their effort. There's little direct evidence of the rain in the images, but the glistening rocks and wet hair contribute to an over-all impression of the day. The fact it was raining a fair bit when the images were made was negated by the long shutter-speeds, though the contrast on the negatives is a little low, probably due to the amount of moisture in the air.
4"x5" film
The final set of images made on this day were actually made in the last moments we had before setting off back to Orono. After we finished working in the rain, we all bundled into the car and drove a little further, to the Schoodic Park parking lot, where we came across an incredible space. A huge rock face had broken lose from the remainder of the bedrock, and slid downwards, creating a natural cavern - the light shone through it, creating a wonderful rim-light effect on the far opening. Though they were still a little chilled from the earlier modelling, both Ellen and Cass agreed that such a space should not be overlooked. There really was only one camera angle that worked, so after fifteen pose variations, we bundled the gear up and headed back to the car, and a hot spaghetti dinner in Orono.

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