As I was driving home from the studio Friday afternoon, I suddenly thought, "This has been a good week." Actually, all things considered, the past few weeks have turned out just fine despite some personal worries and work disappointments. I was reminded of an amusing story Gosia wrote on Majology, of how she took some amazing fresh strawberries intended for dessert and decided to make a pie with them. Her heart sank when she saw the pie was not going to turn out, and the wonderful berries that would have been simply delicious on their own, were now wasted.
The dessert project I started working on in March finished shooting last week, and it turned out great. I was delighted to receive a very complimentary email from the Editor in Chief of the publishing company regarding the styling. so unexpected and so appreciated!
I was also very relieved to hear that the props I sent to Germany for the Plate to Page workshop arrived safely to Meeta. More importantly, I was thrilled to hear that she loved them and couldn't wait to start using them in some upcoming shots! Prop styling is so much about interpretation. With my assignments I'm provided recipes,layouts, and usually some level of art direction. I'm working with a photographer whose style I know or can interpret to a comfortable level. This was a little different challenge for me.
Late last year, when the Plate to Page announced their first workshop, I asked my friend Ilva if they would be interested in having a selection of vintage props available for use during the photo sessions. Ilva was very excited to propose it to the team, and Meeta, Jamie,and Jeanne were all in agreement. Knowing that they had quite a lot of planning and refining of their programme until the spring, I asked that they submit a general theme for the photos. I received that about February, and began gathering the props. I had a table dedicated to the project, adding things in gradually, taking out what didn't fit, trying different possible combinations of linens, flatware, plates. And all the time hoping that this group of photographers who I have never met will find something in the assortment of props that fits their vision,that makes their heart flip a little, something of inspiration. But what if they didn't, what if I were to let them down? I toted that big box to the post office and sent it off with a prayer...or two.
Wednesday morning, my reading list held a new post at What's for lunch, Honey? And oh...sprinkled in the shots were some of the props! The distressed cutting board, flatware with bright red bakelite handles, enamel berry bucket, the little green paring knife. They looked so at home in Meeta's beautiful photos, and I knew everything was going to be fine,truly. The connection was there.
So I'm trying not to think too much about the pies I could have made this month, not dwelling on an awesome opportunity that I had to reluctantly pass up, yet again. If it is meant to be it will return, and if not, then at least I will have still enjoyed the berries.
On Camera with photographer Stephen Hamilton: Berries