This above photo is not on my new website, but I couldn’t decide about it. I was doing a series on couples in the late 90s, and this photo is of artist Stacy Lande and her then boyfriend, Frank Kozik. They had a long distance relationship, so Frank could only be represented in Stacy’s painting of him. I decided it doesn’t have a place on the new website, but I still like it, it still has significance to me.
I have been updating the website some more, taking down photos and putting other ones up. Who knows if I ever will be happy? I guess it’s as good as done until I take new photos. I browsed around some other photographer’s websites that specialize in family and kids photography, and I realize I am not going to “specialize.” I DO want to focus on kids and families more, but I am not going to remove completely all my portraits of my old “bohemian” friends, and I don’t want to exclude that from my future. Maybe I won’t be hanging out in strip clubs anymore, but I still have a lot of friends that live life off the beaten path, and I appreciate them for it. I hope I can still creatively work with them.I have an insane amount of pictures of Stacy Lande, whom I did pictures of for her book, The Red Box: The Phantasma-Allegorical Portraits of Stacy Lande. (I was published under the name, Emilie Harvey). Her paintings were of the dark underground life of Los Angeles, mostly musicians and showgirls, and she wanted her own image to mirror that. I was happy with all the photographs I took of her, even now looking back, even though she is scantily clad wearing lingerie, and Stacy and I are no longer in each other’s lives. Besides using my portraits of her on almost every page of her book, the book is also filled with my casual snapshots from her various gallery openings.
At the time I took those photos and was photographing dancers and showgirls, it was the late 90s, and my biggest sources of inspiration were Nan Goldin and Diane Arbus. A far cry from family portraits! Or not exactly the type of family portraits you want to be remembered by. That type of photography is not my focus now, but I still love those photographers and identify with them, and that part of me that was so inspired by them is still a part of me – even if it is no longer the central part of me. I am a wife and mother now that lives a somewhat stable, normal life, but I still am a little bit quirky, and see and appreciate the darker side to things.
So, the challenge for me starting again as a photographer is bridging the gap. How to find a niche for myself that embraces the past bohemian, and the new happily married mom. Somehow, I will figure out how to bridge that gap. And hopefully I will find an audience of families who don’t mind that my website is black and is not decorated with daisies and child-like decorations. But I understand completely the spirit of children. Perhaps even more so, since in a way, I think me and my old artist friends are still children and have never quite grown up!
Below is another photo of Stacy at her home, fixing her hair in-between posed shots. Below that is a couple at a Velvet Hammer, and below that is a shot from the Blessing of the Cars.