03-08-10 Ruth

I had the privilege of taking Ruth’s portrait a few years ago. She was in her 80’s then and beginning to show evidence of the early stages of Alzheimer’s. She was a great subject – relaxed, friendly and elegant. At one point she placed her hands on the posing table while I changed the lighting setup in the studio. As so often happens when I am taking portraits, the unplanned poses are the ones that become my favorite. These hands could be any elderly person’s hands, I suppose. But they beautifully embody the qualities of their owner. I haven’t seen Ruth since the day I took this photo. I hope she is doing well.

Added 3-17-10: Check out Billy’s comments below and the story. Here’s a quick link to the picture he refers to.

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One thought

  1. Albrecht Durer believed that a person’s hands revealed one’s character and substance which explains why hands are often prominent in his paintings. Probably his most widely distributed painting is simply two hands in the posture of prayer. Here is a link to a wonderful story behind that painting (I do not know if it is factual.) http://www.moytura.com/reflections/prayinghands.htm

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