In my opinion, there is way too much emphasis placed upon youth in today’s society. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against youth and I love flipping through fashion magazines, checking out the gorgeous models. But, the fact remains, as an older woman, I do not really find myself represented there. And, it’s not just fashion magazines. Many photographers, my husband included, are reluctant to use older women as subjects. It’s too much trouble, they say, too difficult, and too time-consuming. They say that younger models require less retouching and are generally more pleasing to photograph. And yet, when I look around, among my own friends and acquaintances, I see many lovely and elegant older women. I am not looking at them through the critical eye of a photographer, but I still see a lot of elegance and beauty.
This prompted me to organize a photo-shoot using three lovely friends, who represent different age groups, for a project I called Elegant Older Ladies.
From left to right:
Julie LoTauro is a retired commercial artist, who now spends her time painting portraits of friends and family and their pets. Julie is 70.
Nerissa Hutchinson is a Toronto-based artisan, who makes jewellery. She is the youngest of the three at 52 years old or at she puts it: “I’ve been around the world 52 times.”
Kim Hegazy is still in the workforce and her main personal interest is her massive hat collection, which is so large the hats have their own room. Kim is just turning 60.
These three lovely ladies consented to participate in our project, and to add some fun to everything, I enlisted the help of a talented young actor and swordsman named Erick Fournier. We have worked with Erick before and really like his style.
Erick brought a suit, tie, dress shirt and a bowler (the bowler was for the Steampunk scenes) which worked great. I wanted Erick to be the boytoy character who flirts wickedly with an older lady. He was perfect.
The ladies were asked to bring their own outfits, things that they would like to be photographed in. Each had their own particular style.
Nerissa leans toward Steampunk and brought several really lovely outfits, as well as her own jewellery designs. Nerissa carried these off with great elegance. Bruce Walker, our set designer and lighting advisor, put together a Steampunk scene for Nerissa. We cast Erick as her Steampunk husband. The combo was perfect and we had a lot of fun doing these shots.