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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

MEP's Final 2012 Senior Rep - Kaelie from BHS | Maris Ehlers Photography

If I were to have a photographic muse (someone who inspires me artistically), it would be Kaelie.  I've known Kaelie for a few years, and this girl is just amazing. If we both had time, I could find reasons to photograph her at least once a week.  :)  

A couple of years ago we did a Sweet Sixteen Session of Kaelie, and giddy is the only way I can describe feeling about seeing her images at the end of the day.  Oh, it was so much fun and I think we were all so surprised at how she came across on film, most of all her mother (I would guess it's a rather strange feeling seeing the child you know look so different in print, and yet so themselves.  

She's a great subject mostly because she has this great energy, and she POURS herself into her own artistic ventures, and I so appreciate that. I wish I would have had the courage and ability to do the same when I was her age (heck, any time before I hit 40 would have been good).  

And of course it helps that she's so darn cute, but that's not really what she's about.  Kaelie is just... different.  Most girls in high school are obsessed with their hair, how they look, and how others perceive them (I don't mean this in a negative way at all - it's truly part of being a teenager), but Kaelie is so not afraid to be her true self at all times.  

Gorgeous to the core.  Happiest when on a stage of some sort.  Filled with a need for self-expression.  Driven to make a difference.  

In 2010, when the earthquake hit Haiti, Kaelie and her peers sprung into action.  Involved in a benefit to raise money for the devastated country via hair dying and a concert, Kaelie ended up with hair the most intense shade of purple you could possibly imagine.  She and that purple hair did good things.  And when it was over, well, she was left with the satisfaction of a job well done and purple hair.  She cut it, died it brown, died it again and just couldn't make it right, so with the confidence and daring soul that few have, just a few weeks before starting her junior year in high school, she basically shaved her head.  Not completely bald mind you, but pretty darn close.   

She wore it well. 

We decided to commemorate this hairstyle with a quick session, and boy did I feel old when I told her to channel her inner Sinnead O'Connor, and she replied "Um, who's that?"

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