When we went for a whole-day photo-shooting with Maria, nothing had prepared me for the person I would meet. We had our time with the previous photo-shooting at Polilimnio lakes, but meeting a person in depth for the whole day is another story. Maria seems to be the happiest person alive and she makes everyone around her feel the same. Despite her being reluctant at first and that we started very early in the morning in order to shoot with soft light and flash in shadow, the day went very well. She was a delight to watch and photograph, very co-operative and full with ideas and suggestions, something very valuable when the photographer runs out of ideas. I had planned the morning well, but had no idea about the afternoon or night. The thing is that when you plan something it never goes the way you want, so you have to improvise and we improvised quite well!
The lighting in the Railway Park was just beautiful! No shadows, green grass, no harsh sun and the photo-shooting went great! The theme was “EVE” and having some people occasionally stare at us as they were taking their strolls through the park played its role in the outcome. Keep in mind that it was very early in the morning, that we touched a theme that it could either success or fail completely and that Maria is not a professional actor (she qualifies in my book, though!). Primary colors were Red vs Green, an apple and grass. We were lucky to shoot these photographs that day as the next day the park flooded when the plants were watered!
We spent around two hours in the park. Next stop was a beach I had scouted the previous day, but between the park and that location we made a stop in Filoxenia shore to look around and decide if this was another possible location for shooting. We resulted in having a long conversation for big and little things of our lives and I found out a little more about Maria. Then we headed for the beach near Kitries where our main summer shooting took place. I had brought some props with me (a laptop and a remote controller) to add to the scene, but what really added to the scene was Maria. In every photo she was a different character and handled the props with fresh ideas improving the original thoughts we discussed. We spent several hours trying new angles, new ideas and I was trying to balance the ever-changing light with my external flash until noon arrived and heat made shooting unbearable.
It was high time to leave the equipment and dive into the sea, so we tried to find a quiet beach to rest. After all, these were dead hours for shooting.
We ended our search at the cool waters (the coolest available) of West Beach in Kalamata and as soon as the clouds came over and the wind begun to blow, he headed home for a nap as we were dead tired.
We met again some time in the afternoon and went to the tower of Kapetanakis near Sotirianika where we spent time learning the light rather than shooting. I couldn’t revert easily from teaching to shooting, so I went with the flow and started explaining some aspects of photography to Maria, who is a multi-skilled person. Having my 32 GB SDHC card almost filled with beautiful material made me also feel relaxed and unwilling to shoot more, even though I had several ideas around a “Lady of the Tower” theme, which was never shot as the light went away very fast.
I wish Maria every success in her studies and I hope she never changes her character, as she is one of the few nice people I’ve had the pleasure to meet. I felt like I knew Maria for a long time and that smile she never erases from her face made the day pass surprisingly fast.
Thank you Maria!