Here's what it feels like to be two weeks from a public reveal.
Another reveal of some of my bandmates from the Musicians' Portrait Sessions was published in Novi Today magazine this week. I've planned for this event so carefully, from coordinating 50+ photo sessions, to selecting just the right portrait to represent each at their best, to collecting their musicians' stories. I have a plan for how to hang the show, the photos are framed and ready to go, but what I didn't have a plan for was early release! I never cheat by skipping to the end of a novel to read the ending before it's time. I didn't know the sex of my baby until she was born. So letting some of the secret/surprise out ahead of October 1 was very hard for me to do.
Someone asked me recently which of the portraits is my favorite. I can't answer that, because each is a favorite in its own way for either the resulting photo, or for the experience we shared in making the photograph, or for the musician's personal story and significance to them of the setting or items in the photo. Each gave me a creative thrill in its own way.
These four portraits, released early for Novi Today magazine, are here because three of them are in favorite, perhaps surprisingly lesser-known Novi locations. The fourth was significant. Vietnam veteran, trumpet player, Dan had played taps for soldiers' funerals in the late 1960s. Wearing his Army jacket and boots, and Tet Offensive hat, he stood in front of his division's Huey helicopter 50 years later and played taps for us on Memorial Day weekend.
With each portrait, there is a story of the musician in their setting, but also the story of us making the photograph. The thrill I felt when I heard the motorcycle rumbling toward me, knowing he'd polished it up for my session with him, was just as emotional as listening to our veteran play taps.
There are many more stories. Looking forward to the real reveal in the Novi Civic Center atrium gallery in two weeks.
On display throughout October 2019 in the Novi Civic Center Atrium gallery. Art show opening Friday, October 4, 7-8:30 pm. Concert featuring music on the theme Pictures at an Exhibition will be Sunday, October 20 at 2 pm at the Novi Civic Center with intermission in the art exhibit. Come out and meet the musicians and learn more about their unique stories. Photography by Stephanie Smith Hall, www.WordSmithPhoto.com.
Blog: Stories from Behind the Lens
As much as I revel in the final image and love returning to look at them again and again, the process of making a photo is also a treasured experience.