The Witch's Castle // Portland, Oregon // Total Strangers Project

What happens when two strangers pretend to be a couple for a photo session? Well, if you’ve been following the strangers sessions that are popping up all over social media, you know its generally pretty damned cute and the individuals seem to have an amazing chemistry. I wasn’t sure if that would be a session I would attempt, but then I found myself joining in a 50-state traveling dress project whose sole theme was to find two total strangers and see if we can coax out that chemistry.

Immediately, I knew I wanted to work with a same-sex couple. There are so many cute strangers sessions being done around the states, but I have yet to see same-sex couples represented. Or anyone in the LGBTQ+ community, for that matter. When I put out my model call, I ultimately chose to work with two individuals who identify as pan sexual - and one of them represents the polyamory and BDSM community, while the other also works as a body-positivity and alt model in PDX. I can’t imagine a better pair to represent Oregon on this project!

For the session, we hiked up to the super creepy and fun Witch’s Castle in NW Portland. This little cottage has an interesting history, and is considered somewhat of a local PDX landmark - especially for partying teenagers. It was an interesting crowd when we arrived - a mix of tourists on a walking guided tour, and some families out with their dogs. We had to work around the crowd, and I’m pretty sure that we had an audience. Kelsy and BrookLinn didn’t even blink an eye, and it was an absolutely fun and steamy session! Kelsy brought along her tarot cards and did a reading for BrookLinn, while I attempted not to fall off the rickety stone walls with my baby strapped on my back.

I think the important thing to note about this strangers project is that it shows how two human beings, who have no prior knowledge of each other, can meet and connect and have a beautiful moment in time. How many of us miss our soul connections without even realizing it, simply because we are too busy imagining what we want out of a connection - all the while overlooking the opportunities right under our nose.

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