FerronThursday, June 29, 2017
Singer Ferron has been in the news of late. I thought she had disappeared. But I understand that she will be performing this coming Sunday at the Vancouver Folk Festival on Jericho Beach.
My portrait of Ferron which I took in 1979 was almost a failure. I had a new highfalutin medium format camera, a Mamiya RB-67. I had hardly used it. I had the money to buy only one lens which for this format was a wide angle lens. This meant I had to be careful when I got close to my subjects so as not to distort them.
I had also purchased a used Ascor QC-1000 studio flash system. I had gone to my Burnaby branch of the Bank of Montreal on Willingdon and Hastings. I needed to borrow $2000 to buy it. The older Scottish woman who was the loans officer asked me what I could offer as collateral. I put a thick pile of Bi-Lines on her desk. At the time Bi-Line was a weekly gay publication I worked for. I was a bit concerned about my not-yet-untarnished reputation so I was listed as Strut McPherson as the photographer of the racy displays of male (and some female) nudity. Perhaps it was my choice of the Scottish nom de plume but the woman liked my photographs and lent me the money.
The day of the shoot at Ferron’s house which was somewhere in Kitsilano, to my shock she only had two-prong outlets in her old house. I could not use my flash nor did I even think of bringing an adaptor. Luckily window light worked very well with Ilford F-P4 with my heavy camera sitting solidly on a tripod.
Ferron was a quiet woman who did not offer me red zinger tea. We had coffee together.