We photographed our friend Kenn back in March for the heck of it, and because he's such a cool dude. He was super kind in letting us use him as a model and his awesome shop as a backdrop while we had some fun with different lighting set-ups. Kenn is a gear head, rocks out to good music--and gives a great haircut. He just opened up his own barber shop in downtown Blacksburg and has done a bang up job inserting his personality and vision into it, outfitting it with old car and garage signs, a retro radio he restored, a steel tool chest for all his hair cutting tools and a glass jug filled with "moonshine" in the corner. He even has hair products that are packaged like fuel cleaner. His place has a warm nostalgic feel--it really isn't like any other hair salon you'll go to, and Kenn backs it up with haircutting skillz. If you are in Blacksburg and need your do done, stop by his place for the best haircut in town.
Our friend and photographer Angel David Verde of Angel's Point of View came to us needing a new headshot for 2014 with a specific look in mind. It's always fun to photograph fellow image makers, as they (like us) aren't usually the ones in front of the camera and finally get a taste of their own medicine.
Merry Christmas, everyone! We hope Santa brought you everything you wanted today, and that you're enjoying some great time with friends and family.
“The Many Faces of Santa” is an ongoing portrait series that was started in the 2012 holiday season to explore how the iconic and quintessential image of Santa Claus -- red suit, red hat, white beard, twinkle in the eye -- is represented by the amateur and professional Santas in our region who don the transformative attire every year to bring magic and smiles to kids (and adults) everywhere.
Although we know thousands of men dressed in red suits and white beards are running around this time of year, when we see someone playing Santa we all exclaim “Look! Santa!”, not “Look! *A* Santa!”. Each Santa represents the one Santa we hold in our minds. We may no longer believe in an actual Santa that lives at the North Pole and drives a sleigh pulled by flying reindeer, but (commercialism and religion aside) we still believe in what Santa represents to us and our inner child -- joy, nostalgia, magic, anticipation.
Our western tradition of Santa Claus partly derives from the very real Saint Nicholas who was a 4th century bishop of Myra in what is now Turkey, and was famous for his generous gifts to the poor. Fittingly, most of the Santas captured here have an underlying, year-round, commitment to community service, and a real joy bringing help and happiness to others -- everything that the “real” Santa represents.
All the Santas here were photographed on-location at their respective events, which were all publicly advertised. Considering their busy schedules and incognito personas, we were very grateful at how accommodating they all were in having their portraits made.
Which is your favorite?
Which one do you think looks most like the "real" Santa?
Testing some new equipment last week.