Sara Burke as "Piglet" and Russel Taylor as "Eeyore".
My parents read Winnie the Pooh stories to me and my brother and sister when we were young kids. They were the perfect bedtime stories. For a period, about fourteen or fifteen years ago, I read the same stories to my own son and it always brought back memories of my mostly happy childhood. I love the story where Pooh and Piglet are out tracking 'dangerous animals' and keep following their own tracks in a circle. Every time they go around they are convinced that a new animal has joined in with the pack they are tracking, unaware that they keeping making and following the new tracks.
My favorite characters are Piglet and Eeyore. I still have the crayon-marked, hardback compendium of Winnie the Pooh stories on my bookshelf. I pull it down once in a while and sit in my most comfortable chair and re-visit some of the stories. They always bring a smile to my face...
That's why I was delighted when the marketing director of Zach Theatre called and asked me if I would be "open" to photographing their production of a Winnie the Pooh play. No, this is not an adult version of W.T.P. it's a play for children and families and people like me who seem to have never grown out of our fondness for Milne's wonderful stories.
Back to the question: Would I submit to sitting through a one hour play of my favorite childhood (and parenting) stories, done by brilliant actors, and would I be willing to be paid for my time? Would I mind if there wasn't an audience and I could move around and photograph from any angle I wanted? In other words, would you mind if we produced a show just for you? To be honest, they had me at "Pooh."
I drove over to the theater this morning with a Nikon D810 and one lens. It was the 24-120mm f4.0 (latest version). I laughed and smiled and photographed my way through a really wonderful production. As I drove away I kept thinking: "I can't believe I get paid to do this."
I had lunch with a friend who wanted to sit and talk to me about the Sony RX 10-2 and then I went home to spend the afternoon petting the studio dog and processing image files. Now, where did I misplace that nap??? A sincere "thank you" to the cast and crew for a wonderful morning away from corporate image making.
Sara Burke as "Owl."
J. Quinton Johnson as "Rabbit."