It was this image. (You can click to enlarge)
Just a little back story first.
This is an image I shot of my fiancee while we were on vacation. Two weeks ago today I lost her to a long illness. I am ... devastated. I think that may the best word for it. At the bottom I will post a link to my Friend Lisa's amazing blog. I gave her 2 hours of gibberish and she wrote a piece that shakes me every read.
This image taught me so many things.
Plan ahead for magnificence. I saw this spot the day before and all but wrecked the car to see how the light was about to fall. I then ran her 40 miles to the store where we bought the entire outfit right down to her undies. I wanted this shoot to be SPECIAL - it was only the second time I shot her pics professionally.
Handle the unexpected with grace if you can. As I shot this image cars lined up watching what I thought was us. Umm, no. There was a bear between her and that tree... hidden from our view by the grass. I finally saw him and just said to Lindsey - " baby I think we have everything I could want in this shoot... " I walked over to her, hugged her all the way back to the car. Lindsey would not have done well with a bear. How we laughed when I showed her the pics later and the bear was visible.
Take care. I foolishly lost this shoot on an un backed up drive loss. I had a hard drive that I simply lost to chaos on vacation. Drive recovery isn't cheap ( and yes I am of course doing it)
What you think of an image now may not be what you think later. I didn't like this shot much when I took it. But I emailed it as part of a vacation series back to Greenville... I cannot believe how lucky I am to have it today. This shot was the one chosen for her service - and to me it say's it all. "I am going now, but I love you :-)" This is a portrait that will be in the memories of thousands of people because it tells a story yet isn't fantasy.... it was just the beauty that was Lindsey. I almost deleted it. I didn't like the billow on the dress. Whoa.
Nail it in camera.
Let your friends know they are fantastic. I could not wait to praise her on this shoot cause she was ... just wow. Terrified of the things in the grass and HATES bugs. I gave Lindsey the praise she deserved. So many local, national and international photographers have come to my rescue... this on top of the many friends I am already blessed with. I am missing so many people in my thank you's because I am mentally off! Know I love each and every letter, token, and prayer and thought. I am proud to say Lindsey taught me this... love your friends and check on them often. They may just need you.
Have at least one portrait like this. This IS Lindsey in my mind. Free, beautiful, astounding in every way right down to her soul.
Please take a look at the amazing piece done by Lisa that tells Our Story and the Story story (yeah, not a typo). http://sheslostinthesubway.com/2014/12/08/hope/
I would love everyone to stop by the memorial page my above and beyond the call of duty friend Robin Bakes set up to honor Lindsey and her emotional support dog Story. https://www.facebook.com/LindseyWinchestermemorial