A long time ago, in a undisclosed location not-so-far-away…
Can you hear the Star Wars music?
I had a camera. (said in dramatic, deep, movie-trailer voice)
I think I might have mentioned I do photo work. Ok…I may have said I’ve done a LOT of photo work…and that said photo-work was the key to the name of my blog.
I may have even alluded to my current photographic hobby being an on-again/off-again borderline addiction.
In this case, recovery is unwanted and over-rated.
Depending on the time of year, season, or my personal level of boredom, photography is either a passion or a curse (sometimes a bit of both). There are days I can’t wait to pull the thing out and aim it at EVERYTHING – and there are days I don’t want to be bothered to haul around the poundage associated with the body, the lenses, spare gear, tripods, yadda yadda yadda…
The camera really DOES add 10 pounds…of accessories
And then there are days where the muse smacks me upside the head with a fantastic idea – and I’m compelled to create something awesome.
Awesome moment story/tie in with ‘How’d you name the blog, Peg’ in 3…2…1
The ‘Memory Shimmer’
Because I have the courage to date a musician who’s got ‘starving artist’ down to a ‘T’ and I’m one of the ‘official’ photographers of his band, when he decides he wants new publicity shots for the boys of The Beltempest – camera, gear, and I get enlisted into service.
Spring before last – the SQO and I took a critical look at the promotional photos on the band’s Facebook page. They were all old. Dated. Comprised of guys who had walked out of the band due to family commitments, relocation, or just plain pissiness.
We needed fresh images.
Keep in mind that when I say ‘fresh,’ I mean photos and image ideas that hadn’t been done to death in promoting small, unknown, progressive/apocalyptic art-rock bands.
No guys lined up against a brick wall. No guys in stage lighting pounding on the instrument of their choosing. No guys in leather and sunglasses and black hats looking all tough and beefy and rebellious.
We floated ideas back and forth for imagery that was odd and eye-catching – a lot that got tossed for budgetary, time, silliness or travel reasons.
The idea that stuck? A day at the beach.
Now, keep in mind that we’re talking about April in Wisconsin. The beach is NOT the place to be in this particular timeframe, because when the weather man says ‘Cooler by the Lake,’ he REALLY means it. Now, it wasn’t January cold (where it actually hurts to breathe) but it was chilly enough to break out the sweaters and semi-winter jackets.
If you haven’t already guessed, in Wisconsin, we have ‘levels’ of winter wear, ranging from “It’s finally starting to get cold,” through “it’s not that bad if you keep moving” and finishing with “I think my feet just froze to the sidewalk.”
Oddly enough, we weren’t the only ones on the beach, proving that we’re not the only crazy people in the state, but are amongst a select minority.
Now…here’s my little positive thought for the day: at least the cooler temperatures meant our fellow slightly-crazy beach goers were warmly clad, and we weren’t assaulted by the random mankini or naturalist taking the ‘all-over tan’ to the extreme.
The photo shoot went well, as the water was energetic enough to get some good wave movement, and we could still move in the temperature without freezing to the sand. The boys were keyed up, too, with the excitement of a day at the beach, as we tend to take our little pleasures wherever we can get them!
The sky, however, didn’t cooperate, being bright, clean, and sunny, without so much as a whisper of cloud in it. Really! Nothing visually exciting above the horizon at all!
Good thing I’m a ‘shop addict…
So where does the teapot come in?
Mr. Teapot was pure serendipity – the momentary ‘smack upside the head by the muse’ I referred to earlier which was brought on by a chance encounter with a piece of pottery.
The SQO lives with his Aunt and helps her take care of her home. Once the snows start to melt, stuff starts to get donated as she gets caught in the throes of that yearly purge affectionately called Spring Cleaning.
I, too, experience a quasi-religious ecstasy at the thought of clearing clutter…
One of the things she had set aside to donate to Goodwill was my little white ceramic teapot.
He sat there, on the table, all white and shining and perky amongst the other stuff destined for a quick trip to the resale shop There may have been an errant sunbeam illuminating his belly to wink at me as the wild idea leapt from…wherever it is that wild ideas leap from…to slap me between the eyeballs.
The word is contained within the name of the band. A tempest can also be an agitated body of water, a violent uprising, a strong wind storm, etc. Well…we were going to the Lakeshore on a semi-windy day – so the odds were good that the water would be agitating nicely.
………………………………………………………… And the Teapot:
Right there in all it’s tea-steeping white-glazed glory not 5 feet from me…close enough to the teacup in the popular phrase to be a recognizable play on it.
So I saved the teapot from resale uncertainty and took him for a day at the beach.
If any of the boys thought I had a screw loose as I carefully positioned the teapot on the piled stones and started clicking away, they hid it well…professional courtesy, and all that…
And, while I wasn’t happy with the original background – a brief session with ‘Shop later put a wonderful wave-action shot in its place to tie the two concepts into the perfect photographic representation which became the header of the Tempest & the Teapot.
And the band shot? One of my favorites: