I have an affinity for working with people- especially when you put a camera in my hands. Studying faces and understanding the goals and desires of your subject means the possibility of creating a memorable outcome. Last summer, my neighbor Susan Brennan needed a new portrait and one sunny Sunday morning found us working together to that end. Sue is a dynamic, bright and engaged individual and it was fun to capture her in pixels. We went from the studio set-up in my home to her house where her family was assembled to take a photo of them together.
Families present other challenges, but the Brennan's love and camaraderie that prevailed came shining through, with a little coaxing of all involved if truth be told. And Sue was kind enough to share her thoughts below:
“When I moved to a new position in Business Development I
found myself using Linked in regularly. I quickly realized I needed an
excellent photo to post. Dorothy Handelman took a photo that garnered
over 50 “likes” on my Facebook page and 25+ positive comments on Linked in
within the first few days. Dorothy showed enormous patience during the
shoot, trying a variety of backgrounds, lighting, and poses until we got it
A few minutes on the internet can easily create a few cringe worthy moments and this morning proved me right yet again. Clicking from coverage on Amal Clooney's white gloves at the Golden Globes (who cares?) to Kelly Osbourne's confession that she yahoo'd herself (like every day?) to Stonewall Kitchen's invitation to join the "Gourmet Toast Movement" (10 ways to make unforgettable toast). While my parents were committed to many progressive causes and were accused of being in "the movement" I had no idea that all the years of piling delectables (including leftovers tucked away in the refrigerator) on a piece of toast was a vanguard act in the kitchen. I'm always amazed by how unimportant events are elevated in to newsworthy content suitable to fill someone's next spare 30 seconds. What a world.
With the calendar advancing and life back to our winter routines, my next order of business is coming up with a concept for my annual Valentine. Nothing like a little stress to propel me forward- something I'm sure is familiar to many. Wish me luck!
The grey weather draws our focus inward. The house hums with activity- James is absorbed with some needed repairs and improvements and I'm making headway on numerous fronts- making a few photos when I can put the pieces together. I like the barrenness of the winter landscape and all the somber colors.
These chilly days and nights means we're eating at home a lot. Trying to mix it up with some new recipes and different flavors.
Pomegranate seeds brighten the gloom while my homemade chocolate bark is a hit. It's good to take it down a notch and pay attention to the little stuff.
Frigid temperatures means signs of nature are slim to none. Even the squirrels seem to appear in brief intervals only to burrow away somewhere I hope is cozy and warm. So when I noticed a stink bug investigating the orchid blooming in the kitchen, its presence reminded that life takes hold where ever it's able and enjoys what ever it can.
I'm not such a cognoscenti that nothing gets by me (I am living in the suburbs after all...). Recently HBO re-broadcast their acclaimed series "The Wire" (originally shown 2002-2008) running episodes back to back to back to back in such a continuous fashion that whenever you turned on one of their channels- it was there. We found ourselves sucked in to a world of cops, eccentric characters, innocent bystanders and bad guys and it became physically difficult to stop watching. Luckily, real life does require us to work, make meals, run errands, converse and sleep on a regular basis. Otherwise I would have been glued to one spot absorbed by this fascinating universe of great acting and great story telling. Bliss for the cold dark days of winter.
but where you end. Another homily to frame one of life's complexities. I expect this year will be replete with successes, losses, conundrums and outcomes good and bad. I'm searching for the strength within to manage the highs and lows with whatever grace I can muster.
Maybe we expect too much of ourselves. Maybe it's our instant culture that mirrors a world so vast that self examination feels relentless. I'm not buying it- well, not too much anyway. It's only the love you make and the good you create that matters in the end. (and thanks to Joan Nathan of the NYTimes for another delicious recipe.....)
Jenifer and Tom (who conveniently live around the corner) gathered up the usual suspects and hosted a a New Year's Eve party at their house. A little merriment, some tete à tetes, an opportunity to people watch with one of my favorite toys of choice and live music to serenade us out of one year in to another meant an enjoyable evening among friends. Any chance to appreciate what fun comes my way is something to be savored- and I hope 2015 allows many more happy moments. Many.