A sweet sugary smell presses in around me as the scent of spun cotton candy gingerly drifts into my senses. The sizzling sound of batter meeting hot oil and the sight of white powered sugar meeting its fried funnel cake companion is in front of me and all around me is the hypnotic and contagious sound of fun. The local fair is in town and while the majority of the attendees are overpaying for tickets to super-sketch carnival rides I am simply staring dreamy eyed at the picturesque setting before me and all the wonderful potential it holds.
Growing up one of my Dad’s favorite movies was American Graffiti. (Think plain white T’s, cruising cars, loads of cigarets, car hops and good old 60’s drama). We watched this movie over and over again. For my Dad I think it stirred memories of “the good ol days.” For me, well I just thought the greasy hair, hopping oldies and muscle cars were great. So when my friend Candice asked me to be join her and another local photographer (Whitney Otte) and shoot for fun at the fair….well this era just came to mind.
James dean and his rebel attitude and a girl with enough sass to match. Every step of planning this was fun and coming from a non-planner this is saying a lot. The wardrobe was simple and with Kristie Wilson working her makeup and hair magic how could we go wrong. (seriously if I could afford to hire her to live in my house and do my makeup every day I would…you can see more of her work here: KristieWilson)
Candice and Whitney both styled and planned fair shoots; each shoot true to their individual style and brand. It never ceases to amaze me how creative these two are. How, even given the same setting, an artist still has the ability to create something totally unique to their eye. You can check out Candice’s shoot here: CandiceIlia
And Whitney has posted a few of her fair photos on her Instagram account here: WhitneyOtte
Both these ladies are MAD talented. I learn something every time I’m around them and I am beyond grateful for the creative community they’ve provided.
Candice, The Yin to my Yang. I’ve never met another photographer who shoots more opposite than I do (so much so that they are the perfect balance for me to shoot with ;p). Every time I shoot with you I am reminded to work for the “one” shot, to take my time and make sure my vision is in front of me before I click my shutter. Watching you, shooting along side you, I have learned to find a strong vision in every shoot and keep that sniper focus on my end goal. To broaden my horizons and keep a spirit that is easily teachable so no opportunity to grow passes me by.
Yours is an eye that aims for perfection and strength and your heart is ever soft and open. From the bottom of my heart I want to say, “Thank you”. Thank you for the way you passionately welcomed me into our little community. For being ever open handed with tips, tricks or “secret’s” you know. Your open book attitude and willingness to include any artist, no matter their level, is what truly made Clovis start to feel like home.
Whitney, My little dark haired but bright fire cracker. From you I’ve learned grit. That intangible trait that fires a person’s will. The one that turns stubbornness into a virtue as it propels a person through adversity and trials. I’ve watched you pursue your passion for photography with a grit that the ‘greats’ possess.
You, my friend, are an inspiration. I don’t know how you come up with half the ideas you have but every time I see your work my heart sighs a deep “YAASSS!” quickly followed by a “GET IT GURL”. Thank you for reminding me what chasing a dream looks like. And most importantly that sometimes following that dream will take the glorious and gritty stubbornness of passionate dreamer.
I love you both with all my heart! (and Valon & Sam I can’t wait to shoot you again ;p. You two beyond killed this shoot and brought everything to life! #ANTM ;p).