Last year, Vancouver Photographer Wendy D asked me to participate in an intimate studio project. Her studio. My self, and my working instruments: brushes, water, paint. It is rare for me to let anyone into my own studio while I’m working and even more unusual to attempt an authentic ‘artist portrait’ in the studio of a photographer, no matter how amazing and reassuring she may be.
Many months have passed and this is the first time I have looked through the disc of photos from that evening shoot. I did attend the opening of the exhibition in Wendy’s studio in November of 2010. I looked in complete awe and utter admiration of the shots of other artists and their thoughts on what they do. There is something intriguing about taking the artist out of their studio, out of their comfort zone. Maybe for musicians who perform on stage quite often it is comfortable but these musicians were asked to ponder and ‘be in’ the process…to think about how and why they write or play music at all. The photographer that was included in the group was not accustomed to being in front of the lens. I am a private creator but in doing this shoot, in sharing the resulting images with the thousands of people who came by Wendy’s studio during the Culture Crawl, I doubled back on my own belief that creating is not an attempt at perfection and it is not about looking good. It is just about allowing this voice to be heard in whatever form it takes.
In some shots I look tired and serious and contemplative. In others, I was clearly diffusing the attention with silliness and fun. And I love that Wendy gave the tools consideration, taking portraits of them, giving them life and depth. The following shots are some of my favourites. For more about this project and Wendy D Photography, see her blog at http://wendyd.ca/musings