2022: I remember Shelia E. from her music videos on Mtv and of course her connection with Prince. I saw her a few times through the years including the time she came out with him at Coachella. So when I was asked to do a portrait how could I say no? The challenge with City Winery in Chicago is I need a backdrop. I originally thought maybe I would bring a purple one but perhaps too on the nose? So I got in early to set up and had an idea to gel a light. I haven’t done this in years but still wanted to see if I could deliver a purple tease. In my limited time I also challenged myself to switch the backdrop during the shoot. I decided to start with the white and let the gel bleed into the background.

Shelia E. arrived and I was surprised to see her still in her winter coat. She initially seemed a little guarded but quickly loosened up. Although I didn’t bring a purple backdrop the gel fell onto the background with a satisfying result.

I felt I had what I needed with the white backdrop and did a quick change and within minutes I had the black up and ready for another round. The purple gel added a subtle tone to the black as well.

I always like to get two different looks at a session and I felt I achieved that goal.