Some FH readers might remember my previous post from earlier this year featuring brothers Alex and Mikel Boisset. (HERE:) The Instagram duo love to be outside, I remembered they had posted some images, in and out of their denim, in a sunflower field.
'A sunflower field is like a sky with a thousand suns.'
Those who read my rambling in-between the pretty pictures, know that at one time I wanted to pursue photography as a living. I ended up taking the more 'sensible' route, at least to my parents, and majored in Physiology. Although I have a decent career, my creative longing have me often think of again picking up a camera. It's also why I channel so much of my creative energy into FH, something I'm rarely able to do with my job. When I do pick up my camera again, one of the first places I'm going to drag a model to, will be a sunflower field. The green's and yellow's provide a lush, colorful background and given how essential light is in photography, I can't think of a better place to shoot than a field of suns.
In addition to providing cut flowers for our table, seeds and of course oil, sunflowers attract pollinators, provide shade, act as a living trellis and can even assist in the cleaning of contaminated soil. It's the reason many farmers grow them among their their vegetable crops, especially corn. When I was reading about the harvesting of sunflowers, I also couldn't help thinking the process had a somewhat phallic feel to the description....
'Once they grow and there heads get big and full of seeds, you know when to harvest them when the pedals drop off and the head falls over. Cut off the head and store them in a plastic bucket until they dry out, then shake them the seeds come out pretty easily.'
'Not only do the colorful props and flowers pop in the milky water, but contrast beautifully with the models wet skin as well.'
Last fall, I introduced FH readers to Briancan Photography with his series of models in the bathtub. (Total Immersion) Some of you may remember the theme was born not from Brian's work as a photographer, but from his time as model. While searching Craigslist, Brian saw an ad from a photographer looking for models willing to pose in a tub. With his life model experience, and given he's not shy about getting naked, Brian answered the ad.
The wheels were already turning, and in addition to posing in the tub, Brian's mind was already eyed to his new theme, and future shoots with models in the tub. I loved how Brian so beautifully incorporates facets of the models personality within the shoot, and within the milky water that surrounds them. I also love love how Brian represents the seasons through the flowers and elements form nature he includes in his shoots.
Some of the first images from Brian's series that I saw were of model Brent Caverly. Brent looking striking in his sunflower bath, and loved the contrast of the vibrant yellow flowers and Brent's skin and body and hair color. When I was putting together the sunflower themed pieces this weekend, I knew I had to get in touch with Brian about featuring more from his shoot with Brent. For Brian, and with this shoot, the sunflowers also held significant meaning.
'Brent was a member of a water polo team that my ex used to belong to. My ex died 3 years ago of cancer. Although we'd broken up years before his death, it still hit me hard. He loved sunflowers, so when I was shooting with Brent, given he also had a connection with my ex through the team, it seemed a fitting tribute to include them in the shoot.'
Not only are the sunflowers visually beautiful, the flowers oils also provide nutrition and healing for the body and skin. Sunflower oil contains Linoleic acid which is a natural skin-protecting barrier, supporting the skins ability to retain moisture. All of those hours soaking in the sun, also provide the flower, and it's oil, with plenty of Vitamin E which acts as an antioxidant, actually reducing the adverse effects of the sun such as premature aging and wrinkles. Bath away Brent, bath away!