it's finally time to start promoting the upcoming Rock 'n' Roll Parents photo exhibit, even though i'm actually not even finished shooting for it.
a little history:
every year i have a photography exhibit at patti hudon's gallery the JP ART MARKET. i've exhibited band portraits, portraits of important people in my life, all images that i had already taken and edited into a coherent exhibit. when it came time to start thinking about an exhibit for may 2005, patti suggested i come up with a concept and shoot for the exhibit. so after weeks and perhaps months of coming up with an exhibit, i decided to pursue a portrait series on rockstars with their kids. i had photographed lori mckenna and tanya donelly and met their kids and realized that a lot of musicians that i was photographing lately had families. so last may was Part 1 of the series which was so much fun.
the exhibit happened during the most change-filled time of my life. within the week of the opening i had quit my full-time job as a graphic designer, become a full-time freelance photographer, moved across town, left a 3-year relationship, and found a place to live on my own for the first time in my life.
working on the exhibit during the stressful time leading up to all that change was an amazing learning process. i met so many amazing people during the shooting who i still adore and love to this day. now i'm working on the second installment and realize how much i've grown during this past year. the confidence in contacting potential subjects and the networking involved in finding them is much more refined. it's fun and nerve-wracking at the same time.
there are still people who i would love to have in the exhibit who i just can't get to. lori mckenna (even though i have photographed her with her kids before) turned down being a part of it, as did thurston and kim from sonic youth. (although, they were the only ones who i didn't have a connection to and tried to go through their management which probably didn't help). this is more of a word-of-mouth growth... people from part 1 telling their musical friends with kids about part 2 and everyone excited about being part of the series.
joe klumpus and nell beram with their daughter eva:
all the shoots happen without a plan or expectation. joe is a friend through other friends of mine and when i got to his house i met nell. she used to work at the phoenix (small world! i think we could've gossiped about that place for hours!) eva, who is the smartest and most outgoing little girl i think i've ever met, was actually the one who introduced me to her mom. she also had a vision for the photo shoot. everyone would be wearing little wings. she goes to her room, hands out the wings to her parents, and then we start shooting in the livingroom, everyone sitting on the couch. eva moves to the coffee table (hesitant because standing on the table isn't really allowed) and shows off moves that she's learned in ballet. we shoot a little bit in a kid sized tent in another room, and then head outside. i wanted to get a shot of the three of them walking in the middle of the cambridge street, all in wings... holding hands... but eva wouldn't go in the road. another thing that wasn't allowed on normal occassions. when joe explained that there wasnt' a lot of traffic and it would be okay to go in the road for a short time to take pictures, eva paused and then said it wouldn't be a good idea because her wings were really fragile.
so, off to the park we went across the street at the elementary school. they all brought instruments and did a great 'band pose' for the shots. eva on drums. joe on keyboard. nell on guitar.
all the images have stories behind them. i didn't bring everyone into a studio on purpose. or make sure they were all shot in livingrooms or houses or anyplace specifically. i show up and whatever the family wants to do for their shot...that's what we do. it's collaborative. it's journalistic. it's how i approach every band shoot, every portrait, every assignment.
info on the exhibit:
JP Art Market
36 South Street
August 24 - September 2