All it took was one sun-chasing, ambitious tree. It decided, ‘I bet if I grow a little bit to the side, sort of out of the way...I could get more sun!’ And it did. It was crooked,‘according to most people’, but it was fat and happy on sunshine. The trees next to him, literally and figuratively, followed the light. They became more creative in how they chose to grow.
Thankfully, since we now have this fantastic canopy of tangled oak branches battling for the sun and stars! When I discovered the oak hammock in GT Bray Park, I was mesmerized. For this photo shoot, the location was the inspiration in and of itself. I wanted to do a photo shoot in the oak hammock, but what?
It started with a FEELING...a feeling of wonder. And while I wanted it to be a little mysterious, I also wanted it to feel comforting and safe.
I wanted Vega’s pose to be very reverential. I had an a-ha moment when I saw Ron Schmidt of Loose Leashes - ‘Spot’. I think you’ll be hard pressed to find a time when I’m not inspired by Ron Schmidt..
Sarolta Bán was really successful in doing a dark piece that wasn’t scary or sad. Sarolta Bán is a photographer from Budapest, Hungary who creates dreamy, moody, surrealistic images. I first became familiar with her work because of her series she is completing on behalf of homeless pets. She’s invited facebook users to submit photos of animals that need a home, and she creates a collage that shows the animal in a better light, in the hopes it will find them a home. This piece is from that series.
Once I decided I wanted it to be a late evening shoot, I was contemplating what other light source I would have, and stumbled upon numerous beautiful examples of lanterns in trees. This one in particular is of the Tavern on the Green, Central Park, New York New York that I found on flickr.
Here’s my very proud choice for the Dogs Of Manatee County Calendar.
Gorgeous Vega - About the Model
I think Vega was pretty convinced it was her birthday...her Mom, Amber, took her to the dog beach at Fort De Soto for several hours that morning, and now she was at her favorite park, where she was showered with more attention, and EVEN got to show two new human friends how awesome she is at fetching a tennis ball, like truly...very skilled. She’s an Australian Shepherd mix, and 9 years old although she doesn’t show it at all.
Vega was a stunning model choice for this photo shoot. Her fur coat pattern visually sings with the dappled tree branches above and the leaves messily scattered below. That was a happy accident I realized in post processing.
Also, Vega was an absolute sweet dear to my husband, Sebastian. I was adamant about Sebastian going with us to the park since it would be getting dark...safety in numbers you know? Sebastian doesn’t go with me on photo shoots because he’s uncomfortable around dogs, so this was his first time and we were both nervous about it.
Vega was so gentle with him, and he ended up being her water boy...she would look to him and he’d bring her a water bowl. She trained HIM so fast, Amber and I were cracking up. It meant so much to me to see him have a positive experience with a dog. A few days later when we went out to dinner with my Mom and Grandpa and I was telling them about the shoot, he interjected what a great dog Vega was. Thank you Vega and Amber!