I feel a little like an egomaniac posting two self-portraits in a row. In fact, I hesitated to use this photo for that very reason. I did have an alternate. But the moment the assignment came to use a photo that was RED, then I just knew that this is my favorite picture using that color. The mood of it is red, and it recalls a very famous red scene in a classic movie. I call a lot of my photos with me as the subject “self” portraits. In fact, I usually involve someone else to actually push the button. This person is usually Andrew or Fred. Truthfully, doing portrait after portrait of myself is a very liberating activity for me. And as another photographer said, “If you like to do self-portraits you will always have a willing model.
There is a little story behind this picture, inspired by Miss Monroe in “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend”. I had been doing a series of photos to promote my jewelry using various local women portraying famous people. I called it “Icons and Divas.” During this time I was also spending more and more time with friends who perform as female impersonators. And, as I once said, “If you hang out with drag queens you’ll end up wearing false eyelashes”. You just will. So, when it was time to do a shoot with Marilyn I decided, “Why not?” Let’s face it. Many little girls have fantasized about Miss Monroe…what it would be like to be her, what it would be like to know her intimately. This photo is a testimony to the amazing skills of my pals Andrew Pentecost (Angel Electra) and Arnold Myint (Suzy Wong). Andrew did this makeup job that is so another side of me that I had never seen, and Arnold loaned me the dress and helped style the photo. What an incredible fun night. I think we did this photo about five years ago, when I was 68.