I Knew a Storm Was Coming….Crystal Marks on Flickr.com

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The iconic first shot by Alberta-resident Crystal Marks has a description of the circumstances surrounding it, rather than a simple caption:

“I knew a storm was coming so we quickly got her dressed and grabbed my camera. When we first arrived it was very sunny and mid day. I snapped a few shoots…..the one below….but the shadows were just too harsh. So I decided that patience was a good idea and I just sat and waited for about a half hour for the storm clouds to come in and cover the sun. I’m so glad I waited because a stormy sky is my favorite thing in photographs. I hope you enjoy!” (crystal- on Flickr.com)

The “one below” isn’t there in the comments any more, but we have the second and third to get an idea what the session was like. For the third one she even gives the origin of the pretty pink dress:

“This is a vintage 50’s dress that I purchased on Ebay last year. I wanted to take this photo last summer but somehow it slipped my mind. (with the dress and vintage reproduction duck) I’m glad I got the shot before she outgrew the dress.” (crystal- on Flickr.com)

The idea of a jumping child (pictured against the skyline on a stormy day) she’d already pursued with her son and a bunch of balloons – nice, but nothing near as successful as this – and in fact she is an artist with clear themes and treatments that she refines over time on her photostream. She started off on Flickr with a very positive attitude, and has always encouraged feedback and enjoyed the sense of sharing posts with a like-minded community – then you see her getting frustrated, even wondering out loud if it wouldn’t be better to take her work somewhere else. Commenters come and go, people get deleted, and there’s no feeling that she’s part of a cohesive group – tho’ I noticed Elena Sigtryggsson/Litsova heaping praise on her work, at least.

Personally I think she would have been better served by an interactive blog – she does have a blog of sorts here, but it’s just a gallery of the same images she has on Flickr  (more or less), with no commentary, information, or basically anything interesting. A Facebook account has precisely six images and no text, and while she gives a home site address, it doesn’t work anymore.

She still posts intermittently on Flickr, one from last year saying:

“Please leave a comment if you are still active on Flickr. I would love to catch up with some old friends.” (crystal- on Flickr.com)

….since then just two almost identical posts in May this year – but with a radically new direction, at least. Here’s my pick of her photostream:

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With the full-format gallery I included a number of monochrome shots, since I personally find the continued use of a pink wash in a number a bit too much – but she is quite happy to show “before” and “after” versions:

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….and then these two:

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…Flickr in fact showing itself to really not be a suitable platform for technical discussions – a blog would have been far more appropriate.

Anyway, finally the artist herself, a beautiful (pink) woman in her own right:

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