When I first met Pastor C and one of her volunteers, Frances, the two reminded me of Batman and Robin. Different personalities, but working together to achieve same goals. Frances set up our initial meeting, where we discussed professional headshots and marketing images for Pastor C's busy and rapidly growing ministry. After the initial discussion of their needs, I was happy when they booked me for a photoshoot, and spent the next few days learning about Pastor C and her women's ministry in Albany, NY from my other clients, who've met Pastor C and even attended her events.
I've heard so many positive things about this woman, what she represents, her ministry, and her team of volunteers, that I truly couldn't wait to get my hands on her. Soon enough that day came, and while my makeup artist, Erin Ford, and I were discussing the details of Pastor's look for this photoshoot, she walked in.
Pastor C is Christina Staton, a beautiful woman who is loud, funny, loves to laugh, honest, compassionate and down to earth. Her presence filled my already big studio and magically the three of us immediately connected. With her came her hair dresser and Frances.. Two minutes later, her graphic designer stepped inside, followed by her assistant. I begun getting nervous thinking the whole church is coming in, and my hair or makeup were pitiful, but that's when they reassured me no one else was joining them. Just the five musketeers that were already there. Talk about performance anxiety!!! But no, that never happened.
The next 3 hours were dynamic and fun. We all felt like old girlfriends, playing dress up, taking pictures, telling stories, snacking and helping each other with suggestions on improvement. I whispered to Erin, "I want what she is having". :) Pastor C has an army of women, whose dedication to the cause, support, nurturing spirit and creative spark were matching the very vibrant personality of their pastor.
5 hours later, the ladies chose the images they liked, paid for them and left. I couldn't help but feel very alone in that moment when the studio stopped being filled with their radiant laughter, smiles, giggles, jokes, hugs and even tears. I felt I wanted to visit the ministry to see this woman and her army in action. The rest of the day, I wore the kind and supportive nature of this group like a perfume. I could feel it, and relived a few very special moments we all shared.
If you decide to check Christina Staton Ministry visit csmonline.org or visit her at 215 Washington Avenue Ext, Albany, NY 12205. Christina Staton will soon release her book "Help Me I'm A Woman" which will feature some of the images we worked on during our first photoshoot. Knowing some of the background this woman has, I am positive this book will be inspirational, touching, and honest.
I am very proud to work with such dynamic women as Pastor C and her ministry. We all agreed this is a start of a beautiful professional relationships between us all and I can't wait to see them all again.