#26 -- Grace
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Taken at the meetup on 17 August in London.
I already had a redhead's portrait on my memory card from that day so in that sense I felt fulfilled, especially after having also completed my goal of finding not just one but two men for the project. I thought that would be it for the day, but as we strolled towards Millennium Bridge I saw Grace and her boyfriend from far away and knew I had to ask her.
I sometimes fear I sound stalkerish or even possibly like an infatuated lesbian (that's politically correct to say I hope) when I approach girls I find stunning (note: girls, please don't worry, I'm not a stalker and am happily married to a man ;) and in this case I was 99% sure Grace would say no anyway... but she said yes and she had such a kind, gentle manner that I was not only nervous because of how beautiful I found her but also wasn't actually prepared with a pose etc in mind! I sheepishly told her I'm not a weird stalker etc, and she smiled saying her sister's a makeup artist so is also often on the lookout for interesting faces. Thank God!
I didn't want to hold her up as she was with someone so I quickly found this window that brought out the blue in her eyes and shot a couple of frames. I got some of her looking into the camera and smiling, which was gorgeous but unfortunately there were some strands of hair in front of her eyes that were picked up by my camera's AF, softening the focus on the eyes themselves... When I saw this at home I was mentally kicking myself for hours and spent a while trying to see if this shot worked - she's not looking at the camera so I wasn't sure if I wanted to use it. I resigned myself to settling for this one but then I opened it today in Photoshop again and actually rather like it now, so here it is! This shot makes me think of Guinevere's character in a series of novels about King Arthur (can't recall the author), or Ginny Weasley, whose character I loved in the HP books but never liked the film version.
I gave Grace my card and asked her to get in touch if she'd like me to take her portrait properly; Grace, if you're here and have read this far: you'd probably make my year if you agreed to a short shoot :) But if not I'm still happy to send you your photos so email me if you'd like them :)