Friday, September 3, 2021

Daughter of Farmer, Countryside, Cuba, 2017

As the cliche goes, there's a story behind every photograph and this one is a great example. A year earlier we were driving in the countryside looking for people when we saw a tree with a light bulb hanging from one of its branches. Once we stopped we also noticed a small bench. It was right across the street from this young woman's house, and her mother came out when she noticed us.

She was very sweet and was just wondering as to why we had stopped. We learned that she was responsible for the spot, making it so that she can sit peacefully in the evenings on the side of the road. She learned that I was a photographer and told me that her daughter really wanted to be a model. We were invited over to the house and ended up meeting her daughter, this young woman in the picture.

We exchanged information and tried our hardest to make it happen in the last week of my summer but weren't able to do so in 2017. When I went back to Cuba in 2018 I never forgot the promise to make a session happen. We called her family and drove the hour to her home for a talk. She was so happy to see us and we made plans for the next week.

When we arrived her boyfriend and mother were helping her get ready. Seeing the family sitting together to help her realize one of her wishes was heartwarming. What was even better was that in between our visits she became pregnant, and was very much looking forward to modeling for herself and her future baby. It was a great afternoon, an experience to remember thanks to this portrait.

Note: Medium-format negative printed onto 11x14 fiber paper and toned in selenium today.

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