Viktoria LangtonFriday, March 30, 2007
I married Rosemary when both of us were young so I was certainly never a man of the world. Since I had lived most of my life in Latin countries (until we moved to Vancouver 30 years ago) I had lived in sexually repressed Catholic societies. It all changed with a couple of beautiful jazz dancers at the CBC.
My first real break in photography happened around 28 years ago when I was called to shoot stills for the Wolfman Jack Show at the CBC on Hamilton Street. I could not peel my eyes away from the dancers that all CBC variety shows featured. There were a couple that I favoured. I asked cameraman Mike Varga for their names. "They are Jackie Coleman and the one with the legs, that's Viktoria Langton." My mother had a handsome pair of legs as did Rosemary but Langton's were spectacular. During the break the cast and crew went to the CBC cafeteria and I chose to follow the dancers. In spite of being a tad shy I managed to raise enough gumption to sit opposite Coleman and another dancer. Both dancers were sweaty and exhausted. Coleman turned to the dancer and loudly said, "I want a hamburger and a fuck and in that order." In all my years before and since I have never been so shocked and startled by a woman as I was then.
After a few years of working at the CBC doing the variety shows I got to not only know the dancers but I found myself conversing with some of them. My favourite shows were the ones where the dancers were made to wear nylons with seams. Viktoria stood out.
I don't remember the exact circumstances. I don't know if Viktoria asked me or I asked her but the fact is that I photographed her twice.
Once in my Burnaby home basement studio (sitting in our Mexican hanging egg chair) and at her home. In both situations my wordly education (nonexistent at the time) was furthered.
Sitting on the egg chair (Viktoria had wet her hair so she looked like she had just stepped out of the shower) she offered, "Do you want me to bare my breasts?" I was too flabergasted by the offer so I muttered a, "It's not necessary." What and idiot I was! Here I had a woman with a face and a pair of cheekbones that Cinemascope was invented for and cold feet were all I could muster.
By the time I photographed Viktoria again the offer had more or less closed. While taking her pictures in her bedroom I noticed a device on her bed that suggested that she was quite happy on her own. Perhaps it was only then that I realized that women were as human as I was, even the ones with special legs.
Of those legs I can tell you that I could go into my files and search for pictures of the CBC dancers. Viktoria's legs would stand out. But that will have to wait for another day. Recently Viktoria visited me in my garden and here you can see a couple of excellently turned ankles. You will have to imagine the rest.
While I am usually polite with most women I have been uncommonly crass in repeatedly asking Miss Langton to undrape for my camera. Her negative replies have been resolute but I have not yet lost all hope.
Viktoria Langton has a beautiful smile and a throaty voice with a special South African accent. She was born there.