vrijdag 18 maart 2016

Cat 164

A happy, radiant smile.... This final portrait sums it all up. We worked hard but we had a blast.
Cat is the 71th Lady behind Crystal Veil.

Dear Cat, making your acquaintance and working with you was a treat! After looking at your great port it was immediately clear that you are a highly experienced model, but in reality you were ten times better. Your motivation for this unusual photo shoot in prescription glasses came through from the very start of our correspondence. You really invested time in the preparatory phase to be well prepared for the actual photo shoot and this eventually paid off. What I also liked was that you had a preference for cat eye glasses. Quite appropriate for a model called Cat but also a sign that you have an excellent taste for frames. The fact that you wear glasses in daily life and that you love your own glasses made a difference as well. Logistics determined that your photo shoot would take place on the final morning of my all too short stay in Paris. Logistics can be a curse but in this case they were a blessing, in several ways. The weather, for one, was on our side. No rain, a bit chilly but not half as cold as when I landed in Paris. No more logistics or preparations ahead, just this photo shoot and then the journey back to Holland.
When you arrived in the lobby of my hotel, it felt like we already knew each other a little bit. We soon headed for the park, chatting away in a lively manner. We sat on a bench and went through the procedure to be followed. There was no rush. When the photo shoot got under way, I was impressed by the natural way you took it all up. The next thing I noticed was the confident ease in which you handled the first pairs of stronger glasses. Gradually you added more expressions, without falling into stereotypes. And it dawned to me that you were transferring and adapting elements of a varied, emotive style from completely different surroundings into everyday captures of a beautiful young lady in a park in winter. Unplugged, minimal art, touches of close posing and then back to the girl next door, without losing any of the honest intensity.
But it all really started to happen after the break. Armed with my ultra warm cardigan, you expanded to the full gamut of posing. And all of a sudden, the expression in your face evoked me to smile and say "Don't mess with Cat!". The park echoed your laughter and it became our running gag. From that moment on, all I had to do was snap at the right moments. It all culminated when you were posing in modern cat eye glasses that only created a massive blur. Acting at its very best but without losing any of your own personality. You were a hard worker, completely devoted to the job but the fun was never far away. The natural flow in our collaboration was second to none.
Time was up and we headed back to the hotel. Then back into the street again for a few informal captures in your own glasses. And all of a sudden, there was music in my head.

A long, long time ago
in a land of idiot boys
There lived a cat, a phenomenal cat
who loved to wallow all day
No one bothered him
as he sat content in his tree
He just lived to eat 'cause it kept him fat
and that's how he wanted to stay
Though he was big and fat
all the world was good to him
and he pointed out on the map
all the places he had been
Cowes, Sardinia, Kathmandu,
the Scilly Isles and Sahara, too
Once when he was thin
he had flown to old Hongkong
and he learned the secret of life
and the sea and the sky beyond
So he gave up his diet and sat in a tree
and ate himself through eternity

When I sang that old Kinks song for you, a strange emotion came over me and the tears were on my cheeks. I had to stop a few times but managed to complete the song. It must have made an unusual sighting but that was irrelevant. My tears were tears of happiness. The whole visit to Paris and the richness of five great photo shoots, culminating in the fantastic hours with this Phenomenal Cat.

Dear Cat, thank you for a day never to be forgotten. I am grateful to you for giving me your complete trust. We really had a connection.

At the moment of writing, I'm waiting for the delivery of your new cat eye glasses.
"Wait a minute, Mr. Postman...."

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