Writer, teacher, philosopher, luminary, friend – Mike Reynolds has been to the studio a couple of times now. Tough customer! I don’t think Mike would take offense by my saying he doesn’t respond well to direction! ;) Though in both instances, I found that posing a question regarding metaphysics was followed by a stream of splendid expression and gesture.
If we listened to our intellect, we’d never have a love affair. We’d never have a friendship. We’d never go into business, because we’d be cynical. Well that’s nonsense. You’ve got to jump off cliffs and build your wings on the way down.
― Ray Bradbury (1920-2012)
My friend, 2011 Arizona Film Maker of the Year – Brian Skiba, needed photos for the opening credits of his latest film – .357. The main characters, including Brian’s actress wife, Laurie Love, came to the studio to create a few dark and edgy wedding stills to lead into the movie’s first, and ill-fated, honeymoon suite scene. And I have my first (and likely last ;) feature length film credit.
Randy and I were both born and raised in Northern Utah. As young men, we frequented the same haunts, and for a few years both lived in the same bucolic mountain ranching community of Morgan Valley. But it wasn’t until decades later, in Phoenix, that we actually met.
Randy came by the studio with his Taylor this week, and we shared a splendid evening listening to music, sipping pinot and making pictures.
“One must be able to gain an understanding, at short notice and close range, of the beauties of character, intellect, and spirit so as to be able to draw out the best qualities and make them show in the outer aspect of the sitter. To do this one must not have a too pronounced notion of what constitutes beauty in the external and, above all, must not worship it. To worship beauty for its own sake is narrow, and one surely cannot derive from it that esthetic pleasure which comes from finding beauty in the commonest things.”– IMOGEN CUNNINGHAM (1883-1976)
R&B singer, songwriter, dancer, choreographer – James Doré, was in the studio last week. Perhaps it’s the fact that he’s an entertainer that made James the ideal collaborator. He made my work easy. James brought a couple of looks and ideas with him, and his responses to the music playing in the studio were exquisite. All I had to do was push the button.
From the moment I met her, I hoped for the opportunity to photograph lovely Jen and those spectacularly radiant eyes. Jen has been to the studio a couple of times now. She’s remarkably comfortable in front of the camera, and extraordinarily patient with me.
It turns out Jen is also a skilled, and reasonably priced Licensed Massage Therapist doing business independently as Jen’s Healing Room (Warner & 101 area). You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org for a recuperative, or just a blissfully relaxing hour.
My daughter, Alicia, was in Phoenix for a few days recently. While here, I invited friend and stylist, Beth Anne Johnson, over to work together on a session with Alicia. Beth Anne and Alicia discovered my mother’s mink stole in the prop closet, which served as the jumping off point for what you see above.
I don’t anticipate vintage portraiture to become a genre I’ll seriously pursue – though the shoot was, and the results are, a lot of fun. And I know my mother would be tickled.
“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.”
– HENRI CARTIER-BRESSON (1908-2004)
It’s appropriate that my first portrait blog post is an outtake of my favorite model – my wife, Amy.
If you’ve checked out my web site, jeffreypiersonstudio.com, you’ll note a number of portraits of Amy – many taken spontaneously as I was working through something new. I’m fortunate that Amy is willing, at a moment’s notice, to sit for a new light set, or backdrop, or exposure test.
Amy is a wonderful wife and partner, and an incredible model.