I am tired. You know, that tired felt after a long day in a car, many hours on the beach, hot sun beating down on you, rolling around in the waves and on the dunes, snacking on peaches and crackers, sipping a slightly cool beer. I spent the whole day in the car or out in the sun, on the rocks, modeling, with far more hours car bound than out, partly due to the itinerary of the photographer I am traveling with and in part because once the sun is out to play, she wins. With sunrise around 7 am, and sunset a full twelve hours later, we had a lot of ground to cover and a whole day of brightness. Some people may enjoy a day at work when they spend more time sitting and traveling to their destination, but when the weather is perfectly warm and the scenery a constantly changing consistency of natural beauty, sitting and watching the setting go by at the speed of a car on a rough dirt road is difficult for me. Today there was a lot of this. I know I have written about concern for being seen nude in public, but that does not mean I am a timid model – there were points today where I wanted to model in the shadowy crevices of gorgeous rock formations in National Forests we drove by, but in order to shoot, both photographer and model need to feel inspired. The best moments of my day were those spent outdoors, rolling around in the sand, pointing my toes, arching towards the sun, relaxing my face from the glare of the light, scampering from one great rock formation to another and holding poses for one click, then two.
My first location of today was Devil’s Garden and although initially wary of the cars sharing the parking lot, the monumental size of the place was explained and I was excited to get back to the impressive set of rocks, replacing my initial inclination to be in a more private area. I am thrilled by a few of the results from our shoot out there, as the formations are majestic on their own, and adding myself to the scene is a great bonus. Besides, who doesn’t desire to be naked in Devil’s Garden?
This evening I was shooting on sandy peaks of burnt red and a bit of glowing white. The timing of having ideal setting sun and overly bright desert sun is about half an hour, so we shot for a while with bright light before hiding in the shade a moment to rest. In no time I was scampering up rocks to a formation I called the chicken train, where I insisted on being photographed. All of the other formations were more curved and textured, and this stood out as geometric and huge, and I had to be naked on the form. One difficulty with solidified sand is that the surface below you cannot actually be trusted, so this influenced some of my posing options as I am about taking some risks for a great photo, but having a whole, beautiful formation crumble, and bring me with it, is not on my to do list.
I have been experimenting with my new FujiFilmx100s on this trip,; purchased as my birthday present to myself and a solution to the heft of carrying around my Nikon on all of my travels. Between my computer, makeup, pair of heels, book, camera, now musical instrument and other knick knacks that have become part of the impertinent contents of my backpack, the weight has gotten to be excessive for someone who relies on their back for their work and does not need her back being in pain. A lighter computer will enter the equation soon enough, but the camera is the best first step. The reviews have been excellent, and I enjoy the image quality and the size in my hand, but have a few details to sort out such as disappearing images on my card and file formats not suited to my current Lightroom version. I am hopeful a name-brand card and a Lightroom upgrade will fix some of my problems, but if I end up kvetching here in a while, you may know why.
When faced when Subway or some random, independent coffee shop to get your lunch in, where do you choose? I will always choose the smaller place unless the only food fare they have consists of sugary pastries, in which case that place is not truly an option. Today I had just this option and while I was a little bit disappointed to see the filling of my burrito simply microwaved, I figured at least my lunch was not the terribly bready and terrible Subway in the gas station. Instead of doing nude photos in the National Park, we had a quiet picnic lunch and watched a long string of tourists in cars roll by right where we were. The overly heaviness of my lunch helped mellow me out and squash any desire to get active and bendy, which was likely a relief to my travel companion.
No one can accuse me of not wanting to work hard and not being passionate about modeling in the outdoors. J