I shared this image once last year in a Throwback Thursday post, but being back at the Signature Hotel in Las Vegas this week, I had forgotten what a stroke of creative brilliance the artist had in her vision.
Elena Hernandez captured this portrait at WPPI in 2010. She was working on a project for Graphi and WPPI doing portraits of people in the industry. The image above is one of my favorites.
Elena's vision was to capture the essence of each subject in a portrait. This was six months before Sheila and I were married. Sheila was and is today a very big part of my life and Elena wanted to pull her into the shot. We later printed it on metal. With the exception of it missing Elena's signature, it's perfect. Because it's displayed with the simplicity of a flat table stand and no frame, it's an unusual piece of art in our home and guests always comment.
But here's where Elena defines the word "professional". I decided to grab a couple of shots of the lobby this morning. I really had forgotten how creative Elena's mind's eye was working that day.
The entryway where she set up the portrait is 24 feet across with mirrors at either end. It's the front of Tower One and there are people walking through constantly.
At either end are two mirrors. There's a chair on one side, where I was sitting. On the other side was the other mirror and the only things Elena moved were the chair slightly and the decorative plate on the table. Hard to believe the entry way hasn't changed in six years!
In order to bring in just a little more light, she had an assistant, our mutual friend Tamara Young, popping in just a little more light with a reflector.
Interested in seeing more of Elena's work? Check out her website for some stunning images. I also shared a post last year with several of her images from the same convention.
When it comes to photographs of ourselves, we all become consumers, no different than the profiles of many clients. In fact, we're tougher than most clients will ever be. It's a pretty amazing thing when an artist not only fulfills our expectations, but exceeds them.
It's even better when it's a good friend who creates a memory.