I usually don't write about current clients, but this is different.
Kimberly came as a referral from a previous client. We've spent a lot of time corresponding and getting to know one another. When I arrived at her place for her trial run (also the day of her engagement photo shoot), I was still riding high off my experience with Warren Haynes' Xmas Jam in Asheville. This was the later part of December.
When I arrived at their place, I was greeted by a man's voice and a smiling face from a balcony. He said, "are you the makeup lady?" I smiled to myself as he saw me collect my gear from my trunk and make my way up to their home. That's a pretty standard response from the male perspective when I see my clients. "Yes, that's me," I said.
When I walked in, I met Kimberly first. Alex, her fiance, introduced himself after our balcony meeting. We did the standard routine. . .looked for the best lighting. Once we decided where that would be, I went about my business of setting up: open cases, lay out palettes, make color choices and (insert record scratch noise here eeeeekkkk. . .) HOLD THE PHONE!!!! I looked up. And I kept looking around me. And then I stepped out of my nook and looked some more.
As far as my eyes could see was the most magnificent concert poster collection I've ever come across. Someone has been to a lot of concerts. . . moe., Widespread Panic, Phish, Govt. Mule, XMAS JAM!!!!, and soooo many others. Not only was the sheer volume of posters impressive, but the love in which each had been framed and preserved, was magnificent. The dining room, the living room, the bedroom. . . this home is a virtual shrine to many hours of great music, concerts, amazing artists, and countless hours on the road to go see them.
Of course, the connection was that I had just done makeup for many of the artists who had performed at Xmas Jam, and by the way, were hanging on this couple's walls. moe. struck me first. I smiled at this because these guys are way-back friends of my brother-in-law, Martin Lesch. They all went to school together at University of Buffalo. . . they go back to formation of the band days. . . campus competition days. Back before they decided a lower-case 'm' and a period at the end of moe. were the way to go.
I think Alex was impressed that "the makeup lady" knew of these bands. Of course, I told him about my experience a couple of weeks prior. . . that December 11-12 weekend in AsheVegas. And wouldn't you know, he and Kimberly were there at the Asheville Civic Center. Then I got the grand tour. Alex is, with good reason, very proud of his collection. It's expansive and beautiful.
But I saw the coffee table on my own. The scores of ticket stubs from years of concerts; every jam band imaginable, all music festivals I have ever and never heard of. And then the first names like Paul, Trey, Dave, and group names of side projects. They were all there under a piece of glass. . . some frayed edges, some stained from the good times and pockets they had seen.
I could have stayed there and talked music for hours. I felt I was with kindred spirits. Alas, we had business to do. These soon-to-be newlyweds had to make an appointment with their (amazing!!!) photographer, Evan Laettner.
My wish for this couple is that music and concerts always be a part of their lives. From one concert lover to another, may you always "see the music."
Engagement photos above are courtesy of Evan Laettner. Poster & coffee table photos are courtesy of Alex & Kimberly.
Peace and love,