A Collaboration That Clicks, Day 94
Well, I did it. I dropped a few pounds, packed some of my favorite things, and flew out to Cincinnati, Ohio for a two-day photo session with my favorite professional photographer, David Michael. Admittedly an understatement, I have a few wickedly talented friends in New York who produce some amazing photography; however, David and I have developed a great working relationship and friendship since we met six years prior performing together in the Opera Company of Philadelphia’s Pearl Fishers, and we literally and figuratively just click.
Usually, we trade a bit, since he often stays with me in New York when traveling for auditions or performances of his own. Because we do work so well together, he also takes as much time as he needs in our sessions to work on his own vision and tweak his portfolio, in addition to helping me with promotional shots and especially headshots for my career as a singer and actor. On this unusual occasion, I stayed with and met his beautiful family about whom I had heard so much, and we had several hours over the course of two days to really hone in on some amazing ideas and locations.
Playing in my favorite outfits and fancy borrowed dresses while perching myself upon banisters at the Cincinnati Music Hall, I remembered again how little we credit the skills of models in our society. Having slightly injured my knee last week exercising too strenuously, I struggled at times to stand in certain ways, hold specific poses, and wear high heels for hours on end. Distractions from other sources and people in our shooting locations threatened my focus, and I battled with my own brain, trying to convey one thought at a time and use my skills and training as an actor to convey varied thoughts, expressions, and motivations while vacillating between moments of inspiration and fatigue.
Doubtless, my friend exercised as high a level of patience with me as hopefully I did with the only available makeup artist on short notice who seemed less than interested in taking suggestions, and after a wonderful but tiring six hundred photos taken, I have far more respect for anyone who poses for a living. As the sweat dripped down David’s brow, I thanked God for my low blood pressure to keep me cool in the expensive gowns and for a friend willing and able to bear the pressures of long sessions in high heat. He had some fantastic ideas for his portfolio, and I have to say I have as much excitement to see his vision for both his own growth as a photographer and mine as an artist. More photos to come, no doubt.