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I met Derek and Mackenzie in a parking lot at DU and as we walked, I chatted with them about their story. (This isn’t simply to fill time, but because I wholeheartedly believe that to create a sense of intimacy with my clients helps to build trust which then helps to promote wonderfully honest and fun portraits.) I learned how they met (high school sweethearts). I learned about their first dates. I learned Derek took a long time to finish undergrad…
So I cracked a line from Tommy Boy, “‘A lot of people take that long to finish college’,’Yeah, they’re called doctors.” Derek smiled and said, “Nah. I built a house.”
He built a house. Sure, I thought. He left school for a year to work on some construction crew and built a house. Interesting choice… “So, you left for a year to work on a crew?”
“Nope. Just myself.”
Huh? Yep. You read that right. He left school for a year to build a house by himself, with help from his dad and his buddy. No crew. Just himself.
Turns out he’s an engineer or architect or something really technical like that, and building a house apparently was his version of a sabbatical.
Not many people have even worked on a crew, much less built a house by themselves. So needless to say I was impressed!
It’s also needless to say how much fun these two were. As you can see from the photos, they were really high energy and very affectionate. Whatever we’re doing to attract the kind of clients we’re getting, I glad it’s working because it’s so much easier to take fun, attractive portraits of extroverts who are authentically in love!
My favorite shot came at the end of the session, when I asked Mack and Derek if there were any more shots they could think of and Mackenzie asked if we could recreate their first kiss from back in high school. Back then, apparently Mackenzie was a little aggressive, and a little nervous but when she leaned forward to kiss Derek (eyes closed) she ended up making out with his nose. Obviously, this made quite an impression on them as we were re-creating it years later. Not only is the shot hilarious, and the back story even better, but I love the look on Derek’s face. To me it says: “Hmmmmmmmm. Am I grossed out or a little bit into this?”