Years ago I worked part-time projectionist at the Windham Theater. I began when the system was still 35 mm film, and left soon after the switch to digital projection.
The job was more ticket sales, concession staffing and cleanup than anything else – but I enjoyed it for a time. Small-town theater, small staff, diverse needs.
I remember the owner’s daughters use to raid the candy cabinet when they visited.
“You can pick one,” he’d say as they were faced with a multitude of choices.
It was sweet.
Like so many of the kids from town, I watched them grow up over the counter. His eldest has graduated college and I can’t say I really recognized her when our paths crossed again when I photographed their family reunion – but it was nice to be invited back in my new role as Windham Photographer
This was an all-out, three-day affair and the night I was hired to photograph included an epic barbecue by Aim 2 Please Catering from Hudson, NY and a live band; Midnight Blue – a six piece with a very solid classic rock sound (though way too much amplification to my ear)
The focus of the evening was a series of group shots: cousins, siblings, family groups – though I worked on candid photography for several hours.
I’d picked out a spot for the largest of the group shots, but my old boss overrode my pick (Sort of used to that, having worked for him for six years – LOL).
We gathered at the creek-side spot and ran with it.
Editing the photos afterward, I noticed a framed photo on a mantle inside the home. It looked like it was taken at the same location and I later learned it was.
Then I got it – sort of a “Seven-Up!” scenario.
Seven-Up! was a British documentary that revisited a group of children every seven years to see where their lives had taken them.
The client wanted me to take essentially the same photo of the group that had been taken years earlier. He hadn’t mentioned it, but I’m used to that too.
When posing the siblings, or attempting to, again overridden. The shot my client set up was obviously one they’d set up year after year.
When I took the job, I was told earlier reunion photos hadn’t worked out as they’d hoped. I don’t know if those included the candid coverage I delivered.
I was a little apprehensive about this one, must confess. I love getting to know folks during ahead of their events when possible. I like to make those personal connections when photographing weddings, reunions and parties.
Things go smoother when I don’t seem like a total stranger and often we part friends. But when there lot’s of history, sometimes too much is assumed.
I hope folks had fun with the process with me behind the camera – I did. Everyone enjoyed the results – but I’ll always wonder what those results might have been like if I’d been able to ‘call the shots.’
Thanks for taking a look. You can also find, follow & like Jonathan Ment Photography on Facebook & at www.catskillsphotographer.com and check out the broad-topic’d “Observational Ramblings” of the Ment Media Group’s “Business Blog.”
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