Wednesday, December 31, 2014

365 (the days of portraits past)

Imagine taking one portrait per day, every day, for an entire year.

That's the project that my beautiful and talented wife, Wendy, started 1 January 2014. Her first shot was of our youngest, Renecita: dancer, singer, artist, a gentle soul who is probably the kindest person you could ever meet.
(She has often been Wendy's assistant throughout the project, as well.)

And today, one calendar year later, Wendy is poised to take her final picture in the 365 Portraits Project.

Like a lot of innovative, artistic endeavors, this one required a step of faith. Putting your creative work out in the public eye is always a risk-taking venture. And doing it for an entire year -- now that takes determination and a strong work ethic in addition to the creative eye and professional skills.

By mid-year, as the newsmagazine video below attests, the Project had already taken on a life of its own.

Along the way, Wendy has taken photos of celebrities, politicians, activists, artists, musicians, fellow photographers, poets, business professionals, moms, dads, kids, families, and even a few pets.

She has had the honor of listening to the stories of volunteer models with terminal illnesses, who wanted one last portrait for friends and family to remember them by.

She has celebrated new life with expectant moms, captured the joy of children, and chronicled many fanciful and imaginative whims together with a wide assortment of people, of all ages, backgrounds, and walks of life.

There have been casualties along the way. This trusty little gizmo was her constant companion throughout the Project, and I'd like to think that both MacGyver and Red Green would be proud of Wendy's fix-it skills.

And after an entire year without a proper "day off", Wendy at times can identify with her long-suffering speedlight.

And today, on the final day of the Project, we started the morning as we typically do: I made coffee and brought her a cup in bed. And then Wendy was off for a radio interview about the 365 Project, which isn't typical of our mornings but seemed like an appropriately fitting book-end to an incredible year.

Wendy returned from her interview, and we set about creating the last image for the series: of Wendy. (Sort of a photographer selfie, in triplicate.)

My contribution was mostly moving furniture and pushing the button on the camera whenever Wendy said, "now".

I couldn't be prouder of her. The resulting image is the perfect finale to her 365 Portraits ProjectAs I said to some friends recently, "It's cool being married to somebody famous".

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