Nude, Vermont, 2013
I wrote last time that I was planning to drive up to Vermont to see my photo on display at the Darkroom Gallery in Essex Junction this past weekend. Well, the weekend has come and gone, and I did indeed go. Not only that, I had two beautiful ladies accompany me and model for me.
Early on Saturday afternoon, I ventured off in my car with models Erica Jay and Nadine Stevens. Erica was one of the two models who traveled with me on my big trip to Maine and Canada last year, but Nadine was someone new to me. She had written to me earlier expressing an interest in working with me, so this proved to be a good opportunity to make it happen.
Saturday was essentially a travel day. After heading out of the city and getting lost in New Jersey (where else?), we finally got on the right track, eventually heading into some beautiful rural scenery in upstate New York and Vermont, stopping at a pizza restaurant for dinner.
The big day of the trip, however, was Sunday – our one full day in Vermont. Erica and Nadine had come along not just to keep me company on the long drive and attend the gallery reception, but to model for me as well. The plan was to get out on Sunday morning to a beautiful outdoor location where my friend Dave Levingston had photographed last year. Before going down to breakfast, Erica asked me what the temperature was. I didn’t know, so I asked her to check on her phone. The answer: 30 degrees.
“Well,” I thought to myself, “at least the hotel room is spacious enough to try to do some photography indoors.” Still, after breakfast, the two young ladies wanted to get out to do some modeling, so off we went as planned. It took about half an hour to get out to the location. The weather had warmed up just a bit but it was still cold, though it was sunny, too.
When I wrote that it took about half an hour to get to the location, I meant the general area of the location. What we still had to do was find a place along the road from where we could get down to the specific location. The other chore was finding a place nearby to park. After driving up and down the road several times trying to figure out just where to go, I looked at some of the pages I had printed out from the internet with information about the location. One of those was thankfully useful and allowed us to find our spot.
Those same internet pages say that this location is very popular with people in the warm weather, but with the temperature in the 30’s, we were the only people around. That was the good news. On the other hand, that kind of weather is not exactly ideal for nude modeling, but Erica and Nadine were brave and didn’t need any coaxing to risk the cold for the sake of art. I can’t say enough to thank them for doing so. Brava! Still, I did take my time changing film to give them ample time to warm up.
It did help them that it was a sunny day, but as we began working around 10:30 or 11:00 a.m., with the sun fairly high in the sky – and getting higher – it really limited what I could do. In such a situation, the best thing to do is to have the models lie flat on the ground to get the sun falling on their figures fairly evenly. You can see one of my digicam snapshots of the scene above.
As this was my first outdoor photo session since purchasing my fisheye and macro lenses on eBay, I also used this as an opportunity to try out those lenses further. Half of the six rolls of 120 film that I shot were with the fisheye, with one done using the macro. Although shade was limited, I did manage to get some photos out of the sun, too.
The other big event of the day was, of course, the reception for the “Skin” exhibit at the Darkroom Gallery. There was a nice turnout of local people, and it was also nice to see photographer Bert Halstead from Massachusetts, who I had met at the reception that I attended there last year. Bert had a couple of photos in the show, and it was good to also see the prints of my friends Dave Levingston and Scott Nichol. Overall the quality of the work presented was good, though I was sorry to see so few darkroom prints included.
A visitor looks at my print
Also returning from last year was local artist Kadina Dinash, who once again was body painting the lovely model Ollie. After the reception, Erica, Nadine and I went out to dinner in Burlington with the gallery’s owner, Ken Signorello, to cap off a fine day of creating and seeing photographic art.
Kadina and Ollie
Dinner on Sunday
The creation wasn’t over yet, as I shot a few more rolls of film with Nadine on Monday morning in the hotel room. It may surprise some of you to read this, but I have actually gotten all of the film from the weekend developed, so hopefully I’ll be able to show you the results before long.
The way back home on Monday was a bit of an adventure. After stopping at a place that Ken recommended to buy some Vermont maple syrup (and more!), I just followed the directions of my GPS as it lead us back into upstate New York. We crossed the interstate border at a different location than we had two days before, and this time we rode through some beautiful forest scenery on back country roads until reaching the main highway heading south.
Dinner on Monday
So, overall, things went well, I have to say. I got to drive through some beautiful scenery, did some photography at a beautiful location and viewed some beautiful figurative art – all in the company of a pair of beautiful women. Why can’t every weekend be like this one???
Here are some more photos:
Dave Levingston’s print
Erica (right) with gallery assistant Damaris
Nadine and I
Work on the wall
Prints by Scott Nichol (left) and Bert Halstead
Tim the bartender
Gallery owner Ken Signorello
Last of the Blue Devils
The garden gnome at the hotel
Vermont maple syrup
Nadine and friend
A good weekend