“I must be a mermaid, for I have no fear of depth but a great fear of shallow living.” Anais Nin
The water is startlingly cold as she walks in, her breath catching in her throat at the shock of it. She closes her eyes and counts to three before plunging in, imaging herself as an elusive mermaid escaping into the dark water. There is something secretive about mermaids, and she can feel it in herself as she looks around and realizes she is essentially alone. It is easy to imagine gracefully slipping away into the quiet, where she would have time to explore the depths of herself before resurfacing.
The lovely Autumn of Autumn L. Rudolph Photography sent us this mermaid story that captures the amazing power of attuning oneself to nature. Outdoor boudoirs always speak directly to our souls, and this waterfall boudoir is no exception. We’re excited to share a peek behind the scenes with you today, in Autumn’s own words...
Waterfalls have a certain strength and power yet there is also a grace and intimacy about them that when paired with a gorgeous girl who embraces the surge of energy around her. For a few years now I had this idea in my head of a mermaid under a waterfall. Not a bright, shiny, happy mermaid but a mermaid born of the mountains: graceful, strong, and empowered like the rivers that surround the Pacific Northwest.
It wasn't until this year that I finally found the location that would breathe life into my dream. Most of the water in the Pacific Northwest is some sort of combination of freezing, muddy, unaccessible, or far away. As I said before, my inspiration was not a tropical beach mermaid, but a mermaid of the rocks. Franklin Falls kept popping up periodically almost like I was being sent a message. It'd show up on my Facebook page in articles or I'd see random photos from someone going on a hike there. It just kept coming up like I was meant to be there.
My model, Heather Ann, and I have worked together before. I never pictured anyone else and had brought this idea to her years ago. I knew she would deliver exactly what I needed. She was absolutely a part of the inspiration behind this shoot - my mermaid muse.
Right before Heather got into the waterfall, we realized that talking to each other was not happening. Between the water and the wind, we couldn't hear each other and for a split second I got worried. I told her I would try to show her what I wanted and that I wanted her to mimic me, but for the most part she would be on her own. We started shooting and there was this one shot where she was standing with her body profile to me, head up towards the light (but facing me), hands in her wet hair, and I got a little choked up. I was just in complete awe. It was everything that I had wanted and worked for.
I think the emotion and the movement is what sets fine art boudoir apart. Like trying to capture the client's heart and what they feel on the inside. I want my clients to have an experience they'll never forget. I want them walking away saying "that was an adventure" and talking about what a great time they had. Most importantly I want who they are as a person to be who they see in the photos.