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Clara Sherman: My Kidding-Around-Make-Believe Daughter

Posted: April 17th, 2011 | Filed under: feature, friend, great face | 7 Comments »

This post is a bit more personal. Let me try to explain — Clara is the daughter of Lizette Tucker, my first wife. Clara’s dad is John Sherman, and he lives here in town. Lizette now lives, I think, in Seattle. Clara’s now 21, and she’s amazing. Three years ago, Lizette called me and asked me to shoot some pictures of Clara to document her 18th birthday. At that time, I’d never met Clara. So let’s just say, it was a bit interesting at my house — Lizette and Clara walked in, and even though, of course, she was not my daughter, it was a bit surreal to see a grown daughter of someone I’d been married to. Can we agree on that?

So fast forward to about two months ago, and I went to a dinner party at Michelle Myers’ home, and Lizette and Clara were there. Clara’s now 21. I guess it just hit me, “This is about as close to a child as I’ll ever have”. Weeks later, several of us were on the sidewalk in front of Fido, in Hillsboro Village, and Clara yelled my name, and came over and said hi. It was nice. All of us in the group commented on how radiant she looked, and there she was, with her entire life in front of her. Twenty-one years old, looking for a job, and getting her own apartment. It’s an exciting time for her.

So recently, I wrote to her and asked her if she’d be willing to be photographed for this project. I told her that the angle on the story was that she was my “almost daughter”. We laugh and kid around about it now.

Yeah, it’s still pretty surreal when I think about it, that I’d be old enough to have a grown child. I only recently feel mature enough to be given a license to have a child; only in the last few months.

(Image above): Clara in makeshift studio, with the flowers that Iris brought to my birthday party.

(Image above): In the back yard of my house, right at sunset.

(Image above): I’ve been looking at a lot of books on painters lately, and this was just an experiment to build contrast and see what happens. I’ll work more with this image later, and try to bust it up.

(Image above): Accidental flare into the lens, making a rainbow, but this picture expresses what I feel about her about as much as anything i shot that day. Love the colors across her face. Wish I could say that I planned it…

(Image above): I just liked how these two frames worked together. Feels like a book cover or something. Shot on B/W Polaroid in the old Graflex camera.

(Image above): Upstairs studio, at sundown, with the big Graflex camera and uncoated lens. Love the flare.

All photographs and content © 2011 Mark Tucker. All rights reserved.