Friday, 1 November 2013

THE WONDER OF YOU by Sophie Gerrard

THE WONDER OF YOU by Sophie Gerrard

Sophie came to me through Twitter. You know the score - you search for photographers and twitter throws up people whom they think you might want to contact. And so it was with Sophie. I looked at her website and thought her work was exceptional.  In particular, I liked the beautiful photograph of the lush green field in Mastichak, Bihar, India. It has a marvellous depth of colour and there is a tiny dot on the horizon - is that a person standing there looking back at Sophie? Could she do a similar shot where I become the dot on the landscape? It is such a romantic picture in the broadest sense.

So, I had no hesitation in writing the usual email to Sophie who told me subsequently that it arrived at a very opportune moment in her life. Anyway, although she spends some of her time in Edinburgh and I like Edinburgh, we decided to meet up in London where she spends the rest of her time. We met at Hampstead Heath Station and had a cup of tea before strolling onto the heath. The light was fading which was exactly what she wanted and she took various shots in different areas some topless and the rest full clothed. 

What I found with Sophie was that she really involved me in what we were doing. She explains what she has in mind and how she wants it to look but not in a way that gets one flustered or nervous. It is all very easy. And, like all good photographers, she found out what made me tick and drew that out in the photographs. 

It was some time later that I received about twenty images from the shoot by email. They were all good and, initially I chose the one below but eventually after going back to them a few times, I knew that it had to be the one above. 

Again the depth of colour is so captivating - there is a darkness which perhaps foretells of the the darker days I am beginning to experience and which come inevitably as the illness takes a hold. But it is not a sad picture to me because it was a happy afternoon spent with a very nice person who knew what she wanted and got it. No nudity, no theatrics, no make up - just a very, very good portrait, beautifully composed and atmospheric.