So just recently, Q and I went to a photo shoot at the studio of a local artist whom I have admired for quite some time now.
Kristen Hatgi is a true art photographer, and although she still does some portraits, I felt very lucky to book a portrait shoot with her, since I imagine that, with her talent, she will not be taking commissions for too many more years.
Right now, she and her husband Mark Sink are having a gorgeous show at the Robin Rice Gallery in NYC. NY friends, you should check it out! I dare you not to fall in love with their compositions.
Q loved Kristen immediately (a good sign) and the entire morning was a dream for all of us. Kristen, who once worked as a florist, has a wonderful way with crafting flora and fauna into her photographic compositions, and it's a pleasure to watch her work.
I felt privileged just to watch the process from the sidelines...both Q rocking out the shoot (I shouldn't have been surprised) and Kristen's artistic process.
Kristen is shy and modest in the extreme, with a voice so soft that sometimes you have to ask her to repeat herself. But she has that quality that effortlessly draws out a subject almost immediately. Something about her soft and demure manner, the stillness of her face and the intelligence of her gaze, elicits exactly the expressions that her photos demand.
It's a great testament to her talent that she is able to put a child who has never met her before at ease within less than 15 minutes.
As an illustrator, I am a devotee of good composition, and I love how Kristen composes her shots with little more than her naked eye.
This one, to me, shows so much of Q's core - her strength, her fearlessness, her determination, her focus, and her utter self-confidence, even in uncertain situations.
While these with the "levitating petals" display her magic.
Q taking a snack break in front of the lens (that's a banana yogurt smoothie she's sucking down).
One of Kristen's tools is a Fuji instant camera that she uses for light tests. Q fell in love with it right off the bat, and it wasn't long before she turned the tables on the photographer and made Kristen the subject.
I can see that I'll have to get her one of these cameras before long. It's right up her alley.
Once she had the hang of the instant camera, Q began (as is her wont) to take over the shoot. She picked a pink backdrop, and began to self-style her own shots.
After a few hours, a five-year-old begins to tire. First thing she does is seek out her mommy (comfortably ensconced in a couch near the edge of the studio).
Next, she wants her mommy to be incorporated into the shots.
Mommy was not entirely prepared to be in front of the camera (to say the least), but who can say no to a little girl who wraps your scarf around her neck?
I have a feeling that this will only be the first session with Kristen, and not the last.