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Unfortunately, My Mother Found Her Ligher
Photo By James Kelley

  • Title: Unfortunately, My Mother Found Her Ligher
  • State/Province/Region: New York
  • Country: United States
  • Nearest Area: Hudson River Valley
  • Nearest Town: Harriman
  • Brief Directions: I shot with one of my first cameras a Kodak X-35, with 126 Tri-x Film. Again while not technically complex. I was fortunate to have the Sun in ideal position and all the geometry worked well. Her face and pose, desperately searching, while at the same time showing inner-pain are the keys to the portrait.
  • Notes: The rules did not set a time frame for shot date eligibility so I assumed it was ok. It may be because it's personal, but even today with an army of Contax cameras with manual Zeiss lenses and new Sony Nex digital equipment, this is my favorite portrait.
  • Best Season: Summer
  • Description: On a family trip to a Flower Festival at Sterling Forest, I caught this portrait of my Mother in the throngs of an nicotine anxiety attack because she dropped, and misplaced her lighter. It was a while ago,and while not technically complex, but the depth of personality revealed in the portrait was instrumental in providing confidence to my vision. Sometimes, I still wonder , if she didn't find it and got through that day without smoking, maybe she would have quit and lived another 20 years. I think the portrait captures, better than the scientific evidence, the addiction caused by cigarette smoking. Decided to use Sepia to show era and better highlight cigarette in mouth.
  • Gear: Kodak x-35, 126
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