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For many years my good friend and fellow Metro Detroit fashion photographer Davide Anderson and I have talked about doing a winter fashion shoot on the icy shores of Lake Huron near Caseville, Michigan.
In March 2014, we made this project a reality. After one of the hardest winters to hit Detroit since they’ve been recording temperatures and snowfall, Davide and I decided to quit complaining about the cold and snow and take advantage of the fact that 90 percent of the Great Lakes surrounding Michigan were completely frozen over. It was a dream background for a fashion photographer based in Metro Detroit who never had the luxury of a beach nearby!
As we packed our gear and left Detroit for the weekend, we both felt a great anticipation for what we would find when we arrived: Would there be icebergs on the lake? Would we find an open body of water? Would the ice be safe enough to walk on? It was March, after all. Our questions were answered as we turned off Colwood Road onto M-25 into Caseville. Spread out before us was the expanse of Lake Huron, frozen flat as a pancake. As far as we could see, ice reflected the sky. It was quite a wondrous site for a couple of city boys.
We spent the rest of the day scouting locations for our shoot. The next day we began our shoot at Port Crescent State Park after the arrival of Abby, our amazing young model who is ready to break through the gates of stardom; our makeup artist Deaette Dwyer; and clothing stylist Cynthia Bass. We shot until our extremities were numb. Then we headed over to frozen Saginaw Bay. We arrived to find wind racing across the ice, hitting us at 30 mph. I suggested that Abby wear a flowing white dress, envisioning it as the perfect complement to the elements. Easy for me to say: I was wearing a winter coat, hat, gloves and two layers of pants. Abby didn’t once complain of the cold and took direction as if possessed by the Cold Miser of Saginaw Bay. As we say in the D, “Detroit Hustles Harder!”
Next year: Icevilla 2!