Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Piano Sessions with Jen Palmer...

Earlier this year, I had the pleasure of meeting with Jen Palmer of Aisling Photography. She lived just over the bridge and it was delightful to meet another creative type so close. (She has since relocated to Savannah, but still comes up fairly frequently.) She is a photographer of such immense skill. I love her dreamy, yet edgy photographs. She has a talent for capturing a little bit of magic in her images.

Before she left, she hosted "The Piano Sessions". She moved her grandmother's antique piano out to the middle of a clearing in a field and had subjects pose with it. I was fortunate to participate. It was a wonderful experience! Below are some of my favorites. The photos are all by Jen Palmer of Aisling Photography and come courtesy of her. CLICK HERE to see more examples of her work.

jen palmer aisling photographyI really love how these photographs turned out. The polished wood of the piano was an excellent backdrop. Not only that, but the grassy greens were so lush.

jen palmer aisling photographyI loved working with Jen, because she wasn't afraid to collaborate. She knew that I am a jewelry designer and was nice enough to take some "product shots". The above necklace spots a beautiful kyanite point, a hand-stamped charm from Heather Wynn-Millican, and a fine pewter pendant from my family. The charm from Heather Wynn-Millican has a Pablo Picasso quote that says, "Art is a jealous mistress." The feather pendant from my family says, "To thine own self be true." Hung on graduated chains – it's simple, but works.

jen palmer aisling photographySince I have no musical talent whatsoever, I thought it was good that there were shots where the piano was ambiguous. I've always wanted to learn, but have been hesitant. I think it stems back to a conversation I had with my grandmother. I probably wasn't more than eight. She was sick and in the hospital and a recording of one of relatives with a deep voice was playing. I can't recall his name, but he was performing Amazing Grace. She said to me, "When I die, I want you to play that at my funeral." And I told her, "I'm never going to learn to play the piano, because I never want you to die."

Fortunately, I was blessed with several more years with my grandma. But I never learned to play the piano and I get a shiver every time I hear that song.

jen palmer aisling photographyI love the dreamy effects she uses. I think it goes well with the ambiance of the photographs. I think in the wrong hands these devices can look cheesy or out of place, but I love the way that she uses them to enhance the feeling of the pictures. They seem romantic and slightly ethereal.

jen palmer aisling photographyI think the above shot is one of my favorites. Perhaps it's because at the very heart of it, I am still camera shy and don't particularly like pictures of myself. After my brother left, my parents just stopped taking pictures. There are years without any pictures of me. A random school photo can be found or a blurry photography assignment from one of my sisters, but that's it. When I became an adult, I tried to change this... but still, my heart races a little when a camera's lens is trained on me.

jen palmer aisling photographyI love how the piano seems to have grown up in the middle of the field. It's almost as if it were apart of some kind of woodland celebration amongst otherworldly creatures and I happened to stumble upon it. In the same series, Jen took an image of a girl in a big yellow taffeta skirt sitting on top of the piano. She seemed to be right out of a fairytale.

If you get the chance to book Jen Palmer, I highly recommend her. She is easy to work with and makes you feel comfortable. She works with the way your body moves and your natural expressions, so you don't look overly-posed or like a mechanical robot. Her images are very painterly. She also offers printing options that are environmentally friendly and socially conscious. CLICK HERE to read more about her work and her processes on her blog and CLICK HERE to find out more about her work.

9 comments:

AJ said...

What a beautiful series of images... and when you get tired of all the snow and cold, you can look at these warm, green photos and remember sunnier times!

SueBeads said...

Andrew! I love those photos!

Elizabeth said...

Wow. I love these photos. My favorite is the full on of the piano and you with the book. Tells a great story.

taralinda said...

Aahhh~ exquisite. Mysterious & beautiful, other worldly- and what a fine model you make! thanks for posting these.

Kokopelli said...

Beautiful photos! Merry Christmas to you and your beloved ones!

Imaginative Jewelry said...

Great shots indeed! Love them all.

flyingbeader said...

Andrew all those are just lovely. I do really like the one with you holding a book in the foreground, but my absolute is the last one with the hazy halo like appearance...and you shouldn't be so shy about the camera. You are a lovely young man filled with life and art.

Rebecca said...

These are beautiful shots! I love the piano out in the forest, it looks incongruous and yet somehow at home. I thoroughly recommend learning the piano - it is a wonderfully soothing thing to play at the end of a long day. I play the piano most days for work and I still love it.

My Life Under the Bus said...

Beautiful photos - you photograph so well! There is definately something between you and the piano. Your back is to it in many of these photos. They are really lovely.