A Hoop and the Faire: Opening day of MD Renfest 2012 for Kelley Nymph

Forgive me, dear followers, for my lack of communication. Work has had me run ragged recently and the truth is that though I have written several partial blogs, I haven’t had the time to actually finish and post them. So I buckled down and worked to finally get at least this one post out to you all:

The Maryland Renaissance Festival opened its merriment to the public on August 25th and I was ready to go. I had my whole outfit picked out—I knew better from previous experiences and the current weather report than to go wearing many layers, so I kept it simple and opted for a variation on my classic gypsy outfit.

That was initially all I had planned until Shelley Shearer made an announcement on facebook about someone she knew having access to a lyra hoop for a limited time and wanting to get together some people to shoot with the hoop. I couldn’t miss the opportunity, so I came down to shoot and met some new people, as well as encountering a few faces I have seen before, like RJ Hannagan who gave me some terrific photos along with Shelley and Pam (another photographer I met that day). Here’s a small sampling of what we did, the rest is already on facebook:

It looks easy to just sit there in that hoop, but I’ll tell you first hand that it wasn’t. For one thing, it’s highly uncomfortable, especially when I was sitting sideways in the hoop. Sitting on it like a swing wasn’t too bad, but I have to admit I was afraid of making one wrong move, losing balance and falling on my face. Well, I would have at least had a nice air mattress to fall into if I had, but luckily it wasn’t necessary. 😛

Luckily, all those years of ballet I took finally seemed to pay off.

There was a fan blowing, which blew my hair all over the place and also made the hoop consistently turn around and around, which was a bit annoying for me and the photographers I am sure. Motion captures are awesome when you get that one that’s just right, but it’s very easy to take a hundred pictures that are awful in the process of trying to get that one shot. And with the addition of my hair being all over the place, there was the added problem of getting the almost perfect shot…..except for the hair that is in my face ruining it. On my end, the greatest challenges were holding my balance while holding the pose in the hoop. Especially taking into account that I had on a crop top and my midriff was visible, which immediately puts more pressure into any woman. Trying to hold your balance in a suspended hoop/swing while arching your back and turning so your “best side” is towards the camera is DIFFICULT. Try it, I assure you it’s no walk in the park.

After I got a few shots in I headed to Renfest and hung out with friends. I love going to faire. There’s something of a kinship I feel with people there. We’re all dressed up, hanging out, having a good time. It’s like a themed party that goes on all through fall. It rained a bit, but it wasn’t enough to get me to go home. I stayed until they were practically throwing people out, and I even got another photo op: my friend Ken Morrill from Yenra Photography was around and he took some nice pictures for me.

Thank you, as always, Ken. 🙂

Unfortunately, I have my day job schedule to worry about. As I mentioned before, albeit briefly, I work for the board of elections, and election season is coming. The mantra gets repeated so often around the office that it feels like an alternate version of Game of Thrones’ eerie warning about winter. But that is the sort of urgency latent in those words. Only election workers can truly understand the horror of election season….and come October/November, I fear I may drop off the earth almost completely. But hopefully it will only be briefly. Until the insanity of work hits though, I will eat, drink, and be merry every weekend I can in Crownsville. MD. Huzzah!


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