Monday, December 04, 2006

crash and learn

The inverted week: the things most carefully plotted, fall apart, and the things thrown together suddenly, casually, yield prize-winning melon-sized fruits.

Last Wednesday night, when planning for the Headshots Soiree was to begin, things got off to a terribly bumpy start when one, Mr. D, drives home from work and winds up on his side, in his car... schliding across the street and into the grassy shoulder after being hit my one Mr. Truck. Shaken and achey, but generally unharmed... car has seen better days and after being towed, is still MIA.

Friday after noon I slip into my chauffeur git up and take Mr. D. Rockstar to his band's gig in Carlisle.

nosebleed © Laura Kicey

Preshow consumption of spaghetti and calisthenics did not fully prepare me for the excitement to follow, whic was akin to getting rolled down a hill, followed by a vigorous full body rub. Tingly good fun.

conquistador © Laura Kicey

The band hadn't played a show in over 19 months. Regardless... rock solid.

Planning and Headshots foodstuff gathering reconvened on Saturday afternoon. My bedroom was converted into Mr. D's Senior Portrait Studio Central. Veggies were chopped. Dips were mixed and managed. The appointed hour for portrait sitters came. And went. Hours passed. And no one came. Finally nearing the sleepy hour, four brave souls came and bared a great deal more than expected or required and superior results were had. Along with a great deal of grape tomato consumption and chest hair grappling.

The crack of Sunday's Dawn came too early and Portraits Round Two, On Location rolled in. Mr. D and rolled down to North Philly to mingle with other photographers at the abandoned Divine Lorraine Hotel.

cold storage
cold storage © Laura Kicey

We were warmly greeted by Jim Primdahl, the man in charge of the reconstruction project. We were taken for a tour by Other Jim and then set free to photograph to our heart's content for the next five and a half hours.

lady in waiting
lady in waiting © Laura Kicey

I don't think a week would have been sufficient.

passing through
passing through © Laura Kicey

Dustin was working with the studio lights, doing portraits of three of my friends who braved the cold early morning along with us.

I broke off on my own, without portrait subjects of my own. I decided as I wandered to do a series of self portraits of me exploring alone.

revealing © Laura Kicey

I had started mulling over the notion when I revisited the Rementer house last week.

ornament © Laura Kicey

I had been wanting to see the inside of the Divine for as long as I've been coming down Broad Street, noticing its abandoned grandeur in passing, but knowing nothing of its amazing history.

radiating © Laura Kicey

It was always just one of those things I file in my mind as photographic impossibilites. Like the things you see in the worst parts of the ghetto or on teh side of the expressway where there is NOwhere to pull over. Things the I'd never see through my lens.

prayer © Laura Kicey

It was an amazing experience, how beautifully preserved sooooo much of the building is. No vandalism. Jim said of all his urban projects he had never before seen a place that had no crack vials, no syringes, no bottles of booze sitting around. The legacy of crazy Father Divine and his cult seems to have shielded the Lorraine from a number of urban ills. It was incredibly peaceful and entirely exciting.

the comfort of dreams
the comfort of dreams © Laura Kicey

My only disappointment was that when I got home and looked at my files I seemed to be having major focusing problems that are still unresolved, so most of these are quite soft at full size. I am worried my camera may be ailing.... using autofocus on tripod *should not* yield these sorts of results, especially with good glass. I made leaps and bounds in my understanding of exposure, so this feels like a mixed success.

I am hoping that I might yet be able to return this week and I am trying to take Friday off to do just that. Jim was generous enough to organize a show at the Yards Brewing Company at 2439 Amber Street in northeast Philly for next Saturday, the 9th of December. I certainly hope to be a part...

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, it's a new year.... and yep, still a huge fan down here! and I must say, the "girls" are looking gooood in some of the shots, what did Lorraine do to you? Gimmie some of that!

Wish i could get in on some of the Kicey fun, distance is a pain.


1:40 AM, January 03, 2007  
Blogger Tarek said...

I like your photography so much, keep it up

9:39 PM, January 06, 2007  

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