June 23, 2006

Carol Outdoor at Long Beach

This was my first full day of outdoor work for the year - from mid morning to sunset, albeit with two separate models. This approach, dedicating a whole day to the image making process, is by far my preferred way of working. It has a number of advantages over shorter days, the greatest being that I can pursue images as they occur, building on the momentum of the moment, as opposed to thinking "hey, that's a great idea, I don't have time now, I will try that sometime." The session's uninterrupted sustained focus on image creation only strengthens the results.
6x7 cm film
I'd never worked on this beach before; a long uninterrupted stretch of shoreline with only one access road, at one end. A twenty minute walk down the beach gave us all the privacy we needed, and apart from a single ATV driver late in the session, the six hours we spent working was uninterrupted (we had easily 5 minutes of warning of the approaching ATV, so all was covered by the time the driver went past).
6x7 cm film
The day was spent working along the rocky end of the beach, moving from space to space as the ideas came. It was about 1/2 way into the session when I asked Carol if she'd lie in a narrow tidal pool, thinking to explore the play of the water on her skin, in a similar manner to the Surfacing image. As I moved around the space however, I very quickly became aware of the rich reflections that the water was providing to Carol's torso - an image that suddenly clicked with my mirror nudes. I went to work with both 35mm infra-red and medium format black and white, totally engaged by the narrow reflections in the water. Because of the size of the tidal pool, there were only a limited number of possibilities, but what was produced in that singles spot was certainly the highlight of the session.
6x7 cm film
Once I'd worked through the possibilities with the pool, Carol and I moved on to other spaces and possibilities, though the water-mirror-nudes were still dancing in front of my eyes. I was on an emotional high after making those images, and that enthusiasm and energy carried through the images from the second half of the session.
35mm infrared film
By the time the session had to wrap up, Carol and I had explored only a small portion of the space's possibilities; like Prospect, the space contained much more then could be worked through in a single day. Without a doubt, I will return to the space in the future (likely taking the 8"x10" camera in place of the Mamiya RB which I used as the main camera for this session).

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