I’m not sure whether the timing of this post is perfect or cruel, to be honest I’m torn? It’s April second, and in my neck of the woods, we woke up to freshly fallen snow…non-plused. And on this unseasonably inclement day we had planned to share our Florida vacation photos. Can you get vitamin D through a computer screen, or is that just as ridiculous as Google Nose – Googles April Fools Day joke, a scented search engine? If you are prone to wishful thinking – a glass half full kind of person – this is just what the doctor ordered.
Why Florida you may ask, after all isn’t NYC Winding Violets recurrent get away destination? Melissa has a very strong emotional connection to Florida. A lot of her best childhood memories were formed in the Florida sun, a perennial vacation spot for her family. The imagination, innovation, and magic of Walt Disney’s legacy is forever etched on that girls heart and mind. I think Belle is held in equal esteem to Batman in our household, and is where her nickname Lissabelle comes from – does that make me the Beast?
Having said that, we didn’t visit Disney this time around, but spent most of our time in South of Florida. But I am told just seeing and smelling the Atlantic Ocean in Florida is enough to lift her spirits for weeks. Being such a Gotham hound, I am natural suspicious of tropical places and Florida is no exception. Melissa has always longed for me to share this part of her heart – her love for Florida. That’s when she found Vizcaya.
Vizcaya (prononuced viz-kye-a) is an estate that was built in the 1910s by James Deering. It’s Architecture is Italian Renaissance, and is America’s answer to Versailles – at least in my mind. This is the kind of place you can’t imagine actually having been someone’s home. I found it so inspirational I insisted we take the 3 hour drive twice to spend more time on the grounds. And I’m happy to say that there is now a home for my heart in Florida too – Vizcaya.
* You may have a keen enough eye to notice that these images look a little different that our usually brood. That’s because they were photographed on a very special camera and on film, if you can remember what that is. For Christmas this year Melissa bought me a camera I have been wanting for years, a Contax 645 medium format film camera. Because we take photographs for a living – which I absolutely love, so don’t get me wrong – it can be difficult to pick up our work gear and capture meaningful imagery of ourselves and our big life moments.
My answer to that was switching the tool. Instead of having that immediate gratification of a digital camera, we went the film route. We had to wait weeks to get our film back from the lab. That anticipation makes the images all the more dear and magical to us. It was a pleasure to photograph Vizcaya Florida on film. A family treasure to keep for years to come.