Colleen and August Beckley celebrate Colleen’s “champagne birthday” with Draht photoshoot. (Photo Contributed: Eric Draht)

Vernon photoshoot goes viral

You never know when a photo will catch the imagination of the viewer.

You never know when a photo will catch the imagination of the viewer.

“Photography isn’t like music,” said Eric Draht, owner of Draht Photography. “When you see a good photograph, maybe you don’t understand the rules of depth or three-point posing or colour theory but you look at it and you know if you like it.”

He said that with many forms of art, including music, one can often identify quality even if they don’t like it. He jokes that you probably don’t listen to Mozart at the gym.

“Even the rules of photography, they’re not invented,” he added. “They’re discovered.”

Draht himself discovered photography at a young age. He grew up in Vernon and after high school, spent 18 months (off and on) in England working with photographers, learning the craft. In 2004, he opened up his own business: Draht photography.

Though he spends most of his time shooting weddings in the Okanagan, it was one of his most recent shoots — a birthday shoot — that went viral.

Draht also teaches photography at the Caetani House in Vernon. This is where he met the subject for the 59 from 59 shoot: Colleen Beckley. She was a student of his last summer.

This year marked her “champagne birthday.” To celebrate, she and her husband August decided to mark the occasion with a photoshoot. They contacted Draht.

“I wasn’t sure what she had planned and going there, I had no idea about half the things that would happen,” said Draht. “I drove in and immediately saw this old pink [Ford Thunderbird]. It matched Colleen’s dress.”

The dress is vintage and also has an interesting history within Vernon.

It was purchased in Vernon by Ruby McRae, a lady in Beckley’s quilting group, who wore that dress on the opening day of the Imperial Bank on Main Street in 1957. Although the dress is hand-constructed and tailored for someone else, it fit Beckley perfectly. She decided to wear it for the shoot.

Inspiration hit. Draht shot with an old lens, creating a look reminiscent of the 1950s. Though Draht said he provided some guidance to the couple, he wanted to make them look natural.

“When people have been in a relationship for that long, they have this mode— this way of sitting, this way of standing together, this way of cuddling — they’re in sync and I just wanted to show the synchronicity between the two of them,” he said.

Based on the public response, he succeeded.

Draht says, he wasn’t sure whether it was the old-timey, vintage vibe of the photos, the dress, the way it showed off Vernon’s landscape or the editing, but the photos immediately gained mass attention online. Within an hour of posting the album, it had over 100 likes on Facebook. Within 24 hours, it had 1100 likes and several shares. Draht was also contacted by Huffington Post who had submitted the spread to their lifestyle section. Draht photography Instagram also gained an extra 1,500 followers since posting the shoot.

“It’s interesting, as photographers, we’re always looking for that special formula that is going to make something go viral,” Draht said in reflection. “I still don’t know what it is but for some reason, this just captured some people’s imagination.”

To report a typo, email:
newstips@vernonmorningstar.com
.

>


@BrieChar
brieanna.charlebois@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

The photo spread includes almost 200 photos; shows off Vernon landscape. (Photos contributed: Eric Draht)

The comments gained mass attention on social media through likes and comments like these ones.

Eric Draht is a Vernon-based photographer. His recent 59 from 59 photoshoot went viral. (photo contributed)

Just Posted

‘Fuel Good Day’ pumps funds for local causes in the Okanagan

10 cents of every litre pumped at the Regional Co-ops on Tuesday was donated to non-profits

16 pot shops green-lighted by Vernon politicians

More recreational cannabis stores could be sprouting in town soon

Fines urged for owners who let their Vernon property go to ‘Sh**sville’

In dealing with former Legion building, city looking at options

Vernon race organizer head-butted by homeless man won’t be stopped

Man arrested after allegedly stealing race flags, assaulting woman in Kalamalka Lake park

Candidates forum scheduled for Vernon

Meet your candidates and ask your questions on Oct. 8

‘I shouldn’t have done it,’ Trudeau says of brownface photo

Trudeau says he also wore makeup while performing a version of a Harry Belafonte song

35 of 87 dogs in 2018 Williams Lake seizure were euthanized due to behavioural issues, BCSPCA confirm

The dogs did not respond to the behaviour modification and remained terrified of humans

LETTER: Drug addicts, alcoholism, ‘it can happen to any family’

One mother says drugs, alcohol use is a choice… a difficult one

Penticton man with multiple driving infractions loses appeal on ‘harsh’ sentence

Driver has been convicted multiple times, including for criminal negligence causing death

B.C. ‘tent city’ disputes spark call for local government autonomy

UBCM backs Maple Ridge after province overrules city

WHL action returns to Okanagan, Rockets GM anxious for season’s start

Big off-season changes, the Memorial Cup; it’s all coming together for Bruce Hamilton

B.C. drug dealers arrested after traffic stop near Banff turns into helicopter pursuit

Antonio Nolasco-Padia, 23, and Dina Anthony, 55, both well-known to Chilliwack law enforcement

Most Read