Before I could write this post, i had to chew a bit on what happened. Thanks for your patience Maria! (: Here goes…
Maria is my “Afrikaans-German” friend. She grew up in Germany and studied in Stellenbosch, where she learned to speak Afrikaans fluently. Currently she is living in Hamburg, but came to SA for vacation. I’ve done a shoot with Maria back in 2009 (see it HERE) and we decided to do a follow-up. I never knew she can grow to become even more beautiful!!!!
The shoot started off with a hair and makeup session. (Thank you Madeleen for doing SUCH AN AWESOME job with the makeup and Julien for her beautiful curls!) The lighting was so beautiful on the day that i started shooting in Welgevonden Estate Stellenbosch, since it was on our way to the spot i chose for the shoot. Sometimes a shoot just works and this was one of those. Maria was being a star and the light and location were all working together. I still showed Maria a few of the images because I was so excited about them. Her little face beamed even more.
As I was driving out of the Welgevonden gates, I saw even more prettiness. Soft light and purple flowers in an open field. Living in SA, I scanned the area and only saw 2 guards on the opposite side of the road. We continued with the shoot. After a few minutes of forgetting about everything that was going on around us, Maria looked up and warned me that there was someone coming up behind me. When i looked around the man was about 5m from me. The next minute (or rather millisecond) he pulled out a knife and ran towards me, demanding my camera. In the process of trying to move away and getting the camera off my neck, i fell over backwards and then (rather desperately) handed him what he asked for: Canon 5D MkIII with the Canon 50mm f1.2. I so badly want to ask for the memory-card of the shoot, but I just knew discussing this matter was not an option with this wild-eyed man. He demanded my Shootsac with my other lenses, memory-cards and car keys, but before I handed it over, Maria started screaming- like only a woman can. I joined the choir. At this stage the man became distracted and i tried to kick him…where no man wants to be kicked. I still don’t know if i succeeded – the adrenaline was pumping so much – but he left. Not really running. Just jogging. Past the 2 onlooking guards of a new residential development. We then saw that a second man was also hanging around, leaving the same time as Wild-Eye-Man.
We were rattled, shocked and VERY angry about losing the images – but safe and unharmed. After a yelling session directed towards the guards, a drive to the inside of the Welgevonden-gates, a thank-you-prayer and a teary call to my mother we decided to continue the shoot. I still had my backup camera and other lenses and Maria was showing her awesome and brave character. We were drying a few tears while shooting, but we decided it’s like horse riding – if you fall off, you get right back on.
Our church family was AMAZING. So many people, as well as the leaders supported us by praying for us and making sure we really were ok. Maria and I ask each other every so often how we are doing, how God is dealing with the fear in our lives etc etc. It’s great to have people like that in your life.
Maria, thank you for being my friend.
We prayed for at least 10 photos. God is faithful:
Dab-dab a tear:
…loved seeing this smile again!
For makeup (that lasts even after crying) contact Madeleen (: