Lately i've been looking for a challenge. I want to push the limits of my abilities and branch out into new genres of photography. I've always been drawn to portraiture but wanted to do it on my terms. Location, subject, lighting, mood and final product all on me. I have done family portraits and senior portraits in the past. The problem is that it has always been directed by the client and not my artistic passion. Don't get me wrong, I love creating images that people will cherish for a lifetime and that meet their expectations. The issue is that when I send the final product I am not always happy with the result. The client loves them but for some reason they are not satisfying for me. So I decided to go for it and photograph someone in a location that resonated for me, where I was in full control. I am lucky enough to have an old friend that was able to help me with this vision. She trusted me and posed for me in an unconventional location. And for that I am grateful.
In the Hgh Sierra's of Northern California I discovered an abandoned train tunnel. The tracks removed but the tunnel itself intact. You can walk for more than a mile inside this tunnel. Parts are pitch black but in one area there was this beautiful stream of light. Along the opposite wall were small rectangular openings that created beams of light approximately 50 feet apart. As you can see in the image above, it created a stunning environment.
As I have stated, this was for me. The first time I saw this location I knew I would be back for a shoot. The light and shadows are amazing. The graffiti added to the overall feel.
I have never had as much fun as I had with this shoot. There was no pressure, no client, no deadline, no expectation. There is a freedom you have when you are the only person that you have to please with an image. Back in 2006 I had a photography business and it sucked the life out of my photography. I was still learning the basics of digital photography. I was trying to apply old principles to a new technology and it wasn't easy. At the same time I was shooting weddings, portraits and had a few corporate clients. While the money was nice, it did nothing for my heart and soul. Over the last nine years I believe I have found more of a balance between the two. I can shoot for a client and still have personal projects that make me happy. I have reached a level of quality that I am happy with (still lots of room for growth) and love holding a camera again.
This project has fed that part of me that loves photography. I had a vision and created something that I find beautiful. I am always dreaming of the next shoot and am constantly taking notes so that I don't forget my ideas. I look at these notes often to see if now is the time to make them a reality. Timing is everything and it's not always possible to jump at every idea. You never know what opportunities might be around the next corner and I'm open to them all.
I count myself lucky that the stars aligned and I was able to find someone willing to pose, a location and to have the equipment that I needed to complete this shoot. This didn't happen overnight and took several weeks to plan, shoot and edit and i'm looking forward to where my imagination takes me next. I hope you enjoy the journey with me.