August 27, 2001

A Session with two New Models (Chebucto Head, Nova Scotia)

The first session with new models is always a great adventure; there is no way to anticipate how it will proceed, or what kind of images might reveal themselves. Because I don't pre-plan my imagery, or even a location prior to the day of a session, both the model and the setting plays a major role in determining the direction for the day, but with new models, there is no way to anticipate how well they will work with a given space.
6x9 cm film
With Trav and Miranda, their first session was as coloured by the landscape around them as it was by what they brought to the images personally. While I'd worked at Chebucto Head for many years, the deep ravine which we found our way into on this particular afternoon presented a most delightful setting for a first session, and lead to some particularly vivid images. Initially we'd started working higher up on the cliffs, but the unexpected appearance of a dog, and shortly later (after the swift donning of clothes) its owners, pushed us further down the rocks, closer to the shore.
35mm infrared film
This move proved fortuitous, as the narrow gorge we ended up moving into has some of the richest and most unique rock striations I have come across in Nova Scotia; the water from the grass and bushes high above had flowed down the sides of the granite and stained it black. Almost as soon as I saw the space, the first pose and image came to me, and the rest of the afternoon was spent draw all the possibilities I could see out of the stone and models.
35mm infrared film
At the close of the afternoon, when all the film was exposed, and the light was fading, I felt completely satisfied. Not only had I discovered a new space, rich with potential, but both Trav and Miranda had proved more then keen as models, putting up with all sorts of long poses and strenuous positions. The results of the session were pleasing, and telling; I'd opted to work with the 4"x5" camera, and while I did end up exposing all 30 negatives I brought, over and over, I found myself once again wishing I'd opted for the larger 8"x10" camera; there is something undeniably different about working with the bigger camera, and as successful as the day's images were, I certainly shall return with the Toyo at a later date, to see what it can draw out of the space.

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