My first impression of Joel came after reading his story. And in that story he came across as a total dick. He wrote about having a boyfriend who was madly in love with him, but he didn't reciprocate at all, and he just seemed heartless. I was sure that when I met Joel in person to do our photoshoot, I'd hate him. Yet in person he was completely unlike how I imagined.
He was softly spoken, a little timid, not at all conceited, not at all arrogant, not at all heartless. He was quite sweet. Prior to meeting I assumed we'd make really moody images that would suit his story, but he was too cute and smiley. And when I saw his smile I realised that I needed to capture that smile and show it. Readers would not have the luxury to meet him in person and understand who he really is. Without showing his smile, they might come away thinking he was a jerk, just as I had.
After spending only five minutes with him I realised that I misunderstood his story as well. What came across originally as cruelty turned out to be a simple case of him being honest about not sharing the same feelings that his boyfriend had towards him. And that's okay, this happens in life. It would be truly cruel to hold on to someone you don't really love and string them along, right?
I hope that the photos I selected of Joel to print in the Elska Perth issue allows readers to interpret his story differently than I did before I met Joel. He's a good lad really. All the guys in Elska are. In full disclosure, if we meet a guy who really is a dick, we won't publish them at all. It hasn't happened often, but it has.
Meet Joel K and all the lovely Perth guys in Elska Perth: bit.ly/elskaperth