July 11, 2019

A Sunset Session with Carol, Esme & Ingrid (Eastern Shore, Nova Scotia)

The focus of this year's work with the Nude seems to be coastal, and this is no accident; the summer is hot, buggy, and 2/3 of the models I have been working with love working in water. For this session, in hopes of finding some different environments to work in, we drove 90 minutes from Halifax to the eastern shore. Arriving at the beach in mid-evening, I expected to find at least some people on the sand, but the beach was empty, so we set about working, reveling in having the space to our own!
Digital infrared original, two frame stitch
After an initial set of images on rocks emerging from the falling tide, Esme suggested working with a large piece of driftwood high on the rocky shore. It was a perfect inspiration, and fit more than fifteen minutes Carol, Esme and Ingrid experimented with a variety of poses (and combinations of models) on the worn tree. The results were really striking, making it challenging to select a single image to share - I selected the below as one of the most dramatic, in part because of the balance provided by the clouds on the right side.
Digital infrared original
As the session progressed, the tide continued to fall, providing access to a pale rock shelf at the far end of the beach - this proved to be one of the best finds of the session, with lots of nooks and cranny's to pose in. After making some initial image of the three models, the evening light was starting to soften up, so I worked with each model individually, with the image of Esme below being one of my favorites. 
Digital infrared original
After last summer's successes (starting with the first time I worked with Esme), the theme of trios-of-models has been something of a sub-thread through my work; with this session being the first time I have worked with Carol, Esme and Ingrid in 2019, it seemed fitting to create an image that would build on the other photographs we have created together. The below composition was more directed than other images of the three I have made in the past. The angular evening light made it hard to keep each model from casting a shadow one another, and I wished to both compliment and contrast the landscape around the models. In the end, after some subtle adjustments, I achieved exactly what I had in my mind's eye.
Digital infrared original
The last images of the night were one of the reasons I selected this location - after the images of the last two sessions (the last image of Esme in seaweed, and the second image of Esme and Ingrid by the ocean), I was particularly interested in working with relatively short shutter speeds, and water sheeting off the beach. Usually, when working with water, I have fallen back to worked with 64x and 1024x neutral density filters, and used shutter speeds in the 4-30 second range...but recent images have forced me to reconsider this - thus the above, final image of the session.
Digital original
By the time the sun was setting, the temperature had cooled below the comfort level for casual modeling, but Ingrid's and Esme's love of water proved stronger, so for the last 15 minutes of the session, the two posed on the slope of the beach as the water rose and fell around then. I made 124 images, but only five had the mixture of model stillness and motion blur to the water around them that I sought...but the last image - literally the last one of the session, show above, was exactly what I had hoped to create - two women awash in a sea of light!

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