As most of you know I am chronically ill thanks to an autoimmune disease that was discovered last year after my Stroke. Well, this year complications from that disease landed me back in the hospital for a total of three weeks. Then after getting out I had to be on bed rest as I recovered from surgery.
Not shooting for that long is always hard on my spirit cause this is seriously what I live for. The long hiatus had also taken a toll on my body and even though my heart and mind wanted to get back in the game my body was weak an on top of that now needed oxygen. Photography is not only my passion but it's how I make a living so it was imperative I get get back to work asap.
But before I took on a client I wanted on test shoot to test my body, learn my limits, see what it was like to shoot with an extra ten pounds from the oxygen machine on my back. So I reached out to this beauty. She was a client I had last year and we had a great shoot then so I contacted her to see if she could come and help me out. She agreed and with very little planning we came together to create these images. It was a short shoot and even so I was worn out after.
I discovered that extra ten pounds on my back was tough and the following day I was sore all over. I always worry when I go weeks without shooting... "Will I lose it? Will I lose my ability to see and create compelling images?" Thankfully after seeing what we created this day I don't think I lost anything. And this shoot helped me to prepare for future shoots. I learned that rather than carrying the O2 machine the whole time I can prop it up against the wall and use a long hose to move around the studio.
I also learned that having a assistant is invaluable for me especially when my body is still compromised and weak, I can have my assistant move lights, reflectors and demonstrate poses which allows me to conserve energy and focus on staying behind the camera and creating beautiful images.
So from now on it is my goal to have my assistant at every shoot I possibly can. Some of you have already met my assistant. Her name is Elisha and she has been truly incredible these last few weeks. She is finishing out her internship with me for September then she is coming on board as a regular Raven Red associate as a assistant and photographer. She is one of a few associate photographers I have coming on board. Each brings their own talents and personalities and were hand picked by me for those reasons.... more on them to come. In the meantime just enjoy this beauty, Lexi.