Meet photographer Hedi Stanton. Hedi grew up in NYC and has enjoyed many iterations of summer in the city – but is savoring this season’s slow, sensual pace. Her boyfriend captures her on the other side of the camera, cooling down on a rooftop on one particularly sweltering afternoon.
When and where did this shoot take place?
We shot these images on the roof of my boyfriend's family home in New York City. It was sweltering hot that day. The floor felt like a hot pan. So we thought, both for art direction and cooling-off purposes, we’d play around with the hose. The water was boiling, too.
What was it like shooting with your partner during quarantine?
I tend to be shy in front of the camera, so it was nice having someone close to me take these pictures. I also think there's an added layer to images when it's between two people who love each other. It almost feels warmer, or like the relationship between the subject and camera is tangible to the viewer. I didn't quarantine with him, so this was a fun project for us to do once we were finally able to see each other.
What does ‘summer in the city’ mean to you?
Summer in the city is really whatever you want it to be. I grew up here and have probably gone through all the phases. I’ve spent it in the park with a blanket, book, and sandwich to-go, or drinking and hanging with friends all night. This summer, I’m happy to slow down and stay in, eat seasonal fruits and work at my own pace. The heat only helps in making sure I don’t move too fast - something that’s too easy to fall into in New York.
What are some of your favorite summer city activities?
This summer I’ve really enjoyed going to the farmers market, making elaborate charcuterie boards, cooking, and watching The Real Housewives of New York or Beverly Hills with friends.
How do you cool off during a New York summer heatwave?
Pre-covid I cooled off by going to some restaurant I’d been wanting to try. During quarantine I cool off by cooking and experimenting in the kitchen. I find comfort in the creativity and science that surrounds cooking.
How does summer enhance or shape your sensuality?
I think it’s easy to say that summer heat means less clothing, which means more skin, and therefore more sensuality with respect to one’s body. This has definitely been the case for me in the past. This year, summer has shaped my sensuality by making it less physical and more emotional. I’m trying to be more present, aware of what a moment smells like or how something feels against my skin. I’d define my sensuality as a servant to my senses, one who makes sure that they’re aware a memory is being created in that very instance.
How does wearing CUUP make you feel?
Wearing CUUP makes me feel elegant and feminine.
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