This is a shoot from August of 2010 I wish I could redo. It was the second time I had ever worked with someone I didn't know. The day before this was the first.
I was visiting my family in Cincinnati and asked my brothers if they knew of anyone that would be interested in working with me. I had a couple volunteers and one of them was Emily.
We met up in Clifton around the University of Cincinnati and had lunch at a Chipotle. We got into some pretty heavy conversations right off the bat. I'll admit I'm naturally inclined to do this and have learned to hold back as I've been accused of "thinking too much" on more than one occasion. I don't know if it was a queue I took from Emily, as she seemed to naturally go there, or because I was a total stranger who would bury her secrets through absence. Either way, we opened up about a lot of aspects of our lives including painful ones. Through our conversations throughout the day I even learned that her deciding to shoot with me was therapeutic.
As much as I loved shooting with Emily I was always slightly disappointed by how the photos came out. This had nothing to do with her and everything to do with my lack of experience. Most specifically I was using two new cameras. The photos above were taken with a Canon Rebel XTi that I had borrowed for the day from my cousin. I had never used a high tech SLR camera at this point let alone a digital one. I didn't even know what RAW files were. The decision was made for me though as I shot everything in jpeg accidentally. On the positive it takes a lot of decisions out of editing.
The photos below (except the first two which are 35mm slides) were shot on the Fujifilm GA645 I had purchased just a couple days before that. Admittedly I shot a whole roll of film with the lens cap on that day, because I wasn't used to the rangefinder style camera. Despite some of its quirks I still own and love it to this day. It's the camera that established my respect for Fujifilm.
I look at these photos every so often hoping I see a way to make them substantially better. I don't think I can though. I just tell myself that these mistakes are an inevitable part of the process of learning, which they are, but I wish I could have delivered something better. I wish I could have done a better job at representing Emily as I got to know her and what it is we shared.