Saturday, January 2, 2010

Engagement Photos

The challenge of portraiture is to show the personality of the subject or in this case the couple. Kaysie and Lee are fun and adventure seeking souls who love living in the Adirondak Mountains. So a very chilly outdoor shoot was definitely called for. Here are a couple of my favorite shots from that day.

Leaning against the tree where he proposed, verbally and graphically.

And in Black and White (and red) by a nearby stream.


robertsloan2art said...

That first one, especially, really shows everything about the couple and their life together. The second is much more traditional and obvious an engagement photo. The first though, to me at least, seems like more reason to think this couple will be one of the lucky pairs who don't wind up in divorce court. Give your subjects my best wishes and that intuitive feeling -- they both rock. Tell them if they can still play together like that in their seventh year together, they are on their way to a lifetime of joy.

If I was one of their relatives I would suggest they buy that one even if they choose the traditional one for the announcements, then set up some sort of reminder to open it on their seventh anniversary. That image shows their joy and the full spectrum of their feelings from romantic love down to deepest friendship and their mutual love of nature.

I just read your EmptyEasel article on donating art and photography to charities. I wanted to compliment you on both the article and the idea. I have fond memories of charity auctions both as a donating artist and as a collector -- sometimes donating my art and then bidding on someone else's because it grabbed me.

One other charitable thing I've always wanted to do that my disabilities limited me from was to take some basic sketch supplies -- charcoal, acid free sketchpads and semi-hard pastels like Richeson or Pastels Carre, to a homeless shelter and do a series of drawing and pastel classes.

I was homeless once. To my surprise, no one else I met at the homeless shelters had ever been a professional artist. The only reason I wound up down and out was that I was disabled and too sick to get out and sell portraits. While I was in the shelter I did some teaching and have sometimes kitted up promising students with decent but low-cost supplies (the bargain hunting aspect is great fun).

But I never did manage the transportation and enough good days fit to go out and be among people to set up the class as a continuing all-summer activity ending on a student show at an art fair. I would have loved to do that and I think it would've gotten great publicity for the whole class, launching a handful of interested people right out of the unemployed-depressed category into the living-their-dream self employed group.

You can never get fired if you work for yourself. You already know that. One possible strategy I had for the class was to set up a regular workshop with a reasonable fee and materials fee, then visit shelters and donate scholarships to the workshop for interested homeless participants. That'd let me be a little more generous with the materials kit. Same idea though -- open the door to the dream for some unlucky people at exactly the point in their lives they need hope.

With what you're already doing, setting it up to finish with a raffle or auction that includes some student works could gain a lot of publicity too.

Anonymous said...
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Kathy said...

The deleted "comment" was spam and is the reason that I'm now moderating comments, I apologise for this necessary inconvenience.

To robertsloan2art:
Thanks you so much for your insightful comments on the photos! They are a wonderful couple who I also suspect will beat the odds, and I'm really happy that one of the photos brought that out.
I also want to thank you for your kind words on my EmptyEasil article on charitable giving for artists. It's a subject near and dear to my heart. As you know, even a small amount of effort can make a real difference for those you're helping, and for yourself - it just feels great.
Congratulations on both finding a way out of your homeless situation and on finding a way to make your time at the shelter meaningful, both for yourself and those to whom you gave hope. You may not need to give up on your dream to bring the arts to those who are in a difficult situation. A few years ago I was with an organization who used grants and gifs from charitable organizations, businesses and individuals to teach the arts. They were able to teach on a sliding scale, a fair price for those who could afford it, partial tuition or free for those less fortunate. The music, art and theater instructers were able to be paid for their work, and we each got a materials budget. If you contact the shelter, they may be able to help you in setting something like that up in your community.