I am writing this on a cool and rainy May 3, 2017. Even one day of semi-sun during a rainy week is not enough to take away that melancholy that consumes me on cloudy days.
Our perennials are not as affected by rainy day melancholy in the spring. My shade tolerant hostas (never use the incorrect term “shade loving”) are doing just fine. In the first weeks of May as they unfurl their leaves one cannot but notice their fresh pristine beauty that may suggest that Roman concept of the Vestal Virgins the priestesses of the Roman goddess of the hearth Vesta.
By the end of May my 27 roses need sun.
While experiencing this melancholy of no sun I perused my old negatives of my times in the late 70s at Wreck Beach. My Rosemary never quite understood my obsession in going there an exposing my nude body to sun. In fact I read quite a lot there and made some very good friends. It was in Wreck Beach where I first had contact with cartoonist/animator Marv Newland and free-lance writer Daniel Wood.
|Hosta 'Party Favor' May 3 2017|
The many beautiful women I met there all gladly posed for my camera, perhaps understanding, how inept I was at it. Thanks to them I learned lots.
One friend, a lead singer of a lovely Vancouver pop band suggested I try some of his excellent hash. I did and then found myself incapable of any movement. Worse still, in my attempts to say anything, all that came out from my semi paralyzed lips was a stutter. That was my first and last time in smoking any kind of weed that was not tobacco. And tobacco I last smoked (a pipe) some 20 years ago.
Those sunny and lazy days at Wreck Beach gave me plenty of time to reflect on my life as a married man with two daughters. It gave me the opportunity to think out my ever increasing assignments for magazines. Illustrating an article with a photograph or photograph (in some cases before the article is written is one of the most satisfying of pleasures. It is one that I miss now that I am obsolete – redundant & retired. I would even go as far as stating that thanks to Wreck Beach I became a good photographer of illustration.
Now in 2017 I have no desire to sun myself except on some holiday where I would probably want to escape the sun I a museum. Now in 2017 I have come to appreciate the undraped female not on a sandy beach (where I learned the craft) but in my smallish studio with its reduced options. In the studio my approach has to be one that is not of those Roman vestal virgins but more on the Greek and thus Platonic concept of the essence – the essence that makes a woman be that.
Here are pictures of the laid back and delightfully beautiful Lorien. She was my friend and I learned a lot from her. I remember with some element of distaste and disapproval that the former Playboy scout (those who know who he was will know his name, I will not name him here) had to adhere to the then (and now?) standards of female beauty. He would parade naked (I gave him that) while wearing shoes and socks and with a Hasselblad around his neck. He would then pick possible Playboy beauties (who often had a little dog) and approach them and ask them about their cute dogs. Lorien did not fit the mold. Her lovely breasts had only a vestige of nipples and the breasts themselves flopped a tad. He would say hi to her but keep on in his search.
|Hosta 'Liberty' May 3 2017|