50 Portraits in 15 Days.

Every year I go on tour with Proof and Proving (Brian Dougherty, solo singer/songwriter, also my fiancé). Amongst the years we’ve toured, it’s also included Giving Chase and Dr. Velvet and the Social Drinkers. I come along as many roles including merch girl, photographer, tour manager, roadie and wing woman (obviously not for Brian). Along with the band’s merch, I set up my photography prints to sell. It’s been one of the greatest things I’ve done in my life. The travel, laughter, stories, whiskey and beer, as well as the people that we’ve met while being on the road has been an irreplaceable experience in my life.

Last year, as we geared up to go on tour with Dr. Velvet and the Social Drinkers, I decided to begin a travel project for myself. 50 portraits in 15 days started out as a personal challenge. I can get quite shy when talking about my paintings and photography with others. This was a way to make myself less timid amongst strangers than could possibly become new friends. I wanted to hear stories, get to know new faces and a photograph was my way to remember them. I found a way to get out of my comfort zone, even if it was while hiding behind a camera.

This was not a challenge to make a great picture. The only equipment I bring abroad is one hot shoe flash, two lenses and my Nikon. The conditions in basements, coffee shops and DIY venues aren’t ideal for portrait photography so I focused on being brave enough to say hello, explain my project, grab the photo and write down email addresses. Sure, sometimes it took some whiskey courage to do it (so pardon bad focus points and ridiculous shots) but I did and wound up exceeding my expectations of the project.

It’s been almost a year since we set out for Europe and I began this project. Grad school got in the way of editing and posting up the shots, but it’s never too late to share your stories with whoever wants to listen.

Proof and Proving and Dr. Velvet and the Social Drinkers are heading out west this time for tour. Of course I’m going, but the question is.. Do I do another round of this sometimes scary and anxiety filled portrait series? It’s a lot of work and for me, takes a lot of nerve to begin the conversation. I’m still contemplating, but for now, enjoy the first series as it goes up.

I want to thank everyone that has ever welcomed Brian, the bands we tour with and I into your lives and into your homes. You have made some of my favorite memories and I will never forget the kindness you’ve shown us. Thank you for listening and thank you for getting behind my camera.

My gratitude is endless.