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#69/100 Beverly 100 Strangers Project

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posted by linda davis alias LJDAVISDESIGNLLC on Monday 9th of January 2012 03:12:53 AM

Beverly is one of the three ladies I met at Faith Tabernacle Sunday afternoon. When I pulled into their parking lot, they all looked very serious. I got out or my car, introduced myself and said, "I need some attractive Ladies of Color for a photo project I'm working on." Nothing. No Response... "You all look so pretty dressed up for church. I would like YOU to be some of my Attractive Ladies of Color", I continued. Smiles all Around! Sure they said and I gave them a moo card. It was very bright outside, and I asked if they would step away out of the sun just a few paces to the side of their church into the shade. " Dark skin is difficult to photograph well without looking artificial" I offered. They agreed-- and it was cute because they acted as a tight, friendly group-- as if to say-- you're photographing all of us; we're in it together. I asked if I could take pictures of them individually since I only had a phone camera. That was OK with them. The shady side of the building wasn't that great- industrial looking and P-I-N-K, I thought, but perhaps still better than the bright sunlight. Beverly reminds me a a full-figured Vanessa Williams- singer, actress and USA's First African American, "Miss America". I took a few shots of Beverly and complimented her on her eyes which are a show stopper. Are you wearing contacts, I asked. She said she was, but they weren't colored contacts-- that her eyes were actually that lovely shade of blue-green. After I took a few pics of Beverly around the corner in the shade, I looked at them in my set and said something like, "I don't know about this one... People will think you're in a woman's prison...". "Oh No" Beverly squealed, then quietly, "People will know its a just a building..." I realized quickly, she thought I was mocking her in some way and had hurt her feelings. I put my hand on her arm right away, looked her in the eye and said, " Of course they will, Beverly... I just saw the pink cinder block behind you- and was making a joke..." She turned around, looked at the pink cinderblock and smiled. She "got" it and recognized I was just being a smart-ass who made a joke about the pink industrial background-- meant no harm, just called it like I saw it, and she relaxed. Everyone else kind've relaxed too and we started yucking it up! Everyone started talking about lunch and preening and primping for me to take their pictures. They all loved Red Lobster. I asked about a Soul Food restaurant I had just passed a block away from the tabernacle. "How's Brothers & Sisters restaurant around the corner?" I asked. Really Good, they said, surprised- That restaurant owners went to their church and often provided catering for their functions. "What's your favorite? What should I order when I go there?" I asked. "Chitlins" Beverly said. I grimaced, and they all laughed. "What? You don't know soul food?" "Not too much", I said, " I know Jamaican food better. I was a nanny there in college. And Barbara, my neighbor in New Jersey is Jamaican and would make it for me all of the time, : salt fish, bammy, curried goat, callaloo, cassava, ackees, cho-cho, breadfruit, pigeon peas, fried plantain... " I make all myself now pretty well too--(my mouth is watering). They smiled knowingly and we got on with the picture taking. One of their husbands was patiently warming up the car. They were all pretty terrific. What can I say... I'm a Libra... can't make up my mind here... Like always, I struggle to chose the pic that most captures a Stranger's personality, and I think this is the one... more views in comments. To learn more about the project 100 Stranger visit: A link to my 100 Stranger Set:

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