One of the unexpected perks of being a photographer who often shoots in natural settings is that I have been able to witness some examples of incredible beauty and wonder that I never would have seen if I wasn’t out in it so frequently. One example of this is the sudden winter that fell over a nearby forest in the middle of summer. The forest is rich with a certain kind of tree which apparently reproduces in much the same way a dandelions does; growing a downy, fluffy seed which the wind carries far and wide. I have searched and searched, but I still have no idea what the name of the tree is; if you know, please tell me! Regardless, the result of the trees was that huge sections of the forest was covered in a magical “snow.” I couldn’t have asked for a setting more perfect for DreamWorld.
Naturally, I leaped into photographic action.
The first photo of the series featured Dedeker amidst the snow trees. She carried such a feeling of wonder and awe, much the same as I had felt the first time I saw the snowy landscape.
The second photo I created was with Katie. I decided there should be someone who ruled this forever-winter corner of DreamWorld, a benevolent being who would keep things always winter, but it would be a spring-like winter full of life and growth. I’m sure a lot of my fascination with this idea has to do with the brutal Los Angeles summer we all go through every year, and the fact that heat makes all of my symptoms much worse. I dread summer every year, and I long for a place where summer could never reach, so the Snow Saint was created. I wanted her to have a semi-religious quality, something that hinted at a spirituality as well as power over nature. Katie easily embodied all of these elements at once. The Snow Saint looks like a queen, like someone to be revered, but also someone you could approach and who would hear your supplications.
And yes, on both occasions my models and I were shaking “snow” off our clothes and out of our hair for hours, but it was well worth it 🙂