There goes the Octegenarian Club

I always say each new photo shoot is the funnest shoot ever, but this one really was, when I photographed the ever so lovely and naughty Linda Fillmore for her 80th birthday feature in Xtra newspaper.

Linda is the Matriarch of the Fillmore Family Foundation. The Family is a non-profit foundation that raises money for organizations such as Out in Schools, A Loving Spoonful, Camp Out and McLaren Housing Society. I posted last month about the raucous Prairie Fairy Fowl Supper event the Family puts on each fall to raise these funds.

This was an amazing experience as it was the first time I 'pitched' a cover and story idea to Xtra and they accepted. I wanted to honour all that Linda Fillmore and her Family have done for our Community and create some beautiful images for her. We all had a blast in the studio and even did a 'Commando' run out to the Bull Statue downtown.

You're in good hands Linda Fillmore.

You're in good hands Linda Fillmore.

I'm aging myself, but does anyone remember the series Dallas?

I'm aging myself, but does anyone remember the series Dallas?

Such wonderful folks to play with.

Such wonderful folks to play with.


It takes a TEAM:

Assistant: Robin Toma
Assistant: Jason Blais
Stylist: Stephen Fahlman
James Goranko (dark beard)
Shayne Forster (red beard)

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Primal He{Art}

The Primal He{Art} series was inspired from a photo project I was invited to participate in based out of Toronto called the 10x10 Photography Project. The ten year Project is in its third year and each year invites ten photographers to create ten portraits of individuals who have contributed to the LGBTQ arts in Canada. Those 100 portraits were showcased at a Gallery in Toronto in June and also published in a gorgeous photo book. I was also fortunate to have the Project accepted into Vancouver's Queer Arts Festival Curated Show in August.

My series honoured ten Vancouver artists and the primal heart connection they feel to their artistic expression. I invited my ten subjects to choose words that described what their artistic expression evoked for them. Those deeply intimate words were then spray painted onto their bodies by artist Carole Lagimodiere, and they were then photographed semi nude. I have experienced firsthand the vulnerability of sharing one’s art with the world and I felt that having them pose in the nude would help to illustrate that vulnerability. I also love how light and shadow can create texture, form and beauty when photographing the human body.

I endeavored to create an atmosphere of collaboration with my artists with poses and lighting that would suit their personalities and to some extent their gender expression. I took the duty that the 10x10 Project bestowed upon me very seriously as I wanted to honour these individuals by creating compelling and beautiful images for them. A lot of folks helped with this Project and I’m extremely proud of what we have all created together.


When the Sun Comes Out

I never thought I would utter these words. I loved this Opera. I saw the workshop last summer at the Queer Arts Festival in Vancouver. Well, I had to see it. I was photographing it for them. Seriously, it was not what I expected. First of all, I developed an instant crush on the lead soprano. Secondly, the male role broke my heart. Like tears in my eyes and heart crushing compassion for his story, that kind of broke my heart.

This was the largest, longest and most elaborate photo shoot I've ever done and involved the collaborative efforts of 12 people to pull it off. It was so worth it. We created some awesome images for the Opera. The Georgia Straight, Xtra and the Courier all featured the images which had enormous impact in its promotion.

The Opera is so poignant today in a 2013 world where we can still be tortured and murdered for simply being who we are.

From the Queer Arts Festival website - "When the Sun Comes Out is the world premiere of Canada’s first lesbian opera, commissioned by QAF. This ground-breaking new work is written by composer Leslie Uyeda and poet Rachel Rose, and directed by James Fagan Tait.

A story of forbidden love, divided loyalties and culture clash, the opera explores the oppression that queers face, and the risks they take, in nations where homosexuality is illegal."


From left to right: Aaron Durand, Teiya Kasahara, Julia Morgan, and Leslie Uyeda (with baton).


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