Making a splash…

I had my first underwater shoot of the season with model Haleigh.  One of my models (thanks Stacey) gave me a bunch of contacts last year and Haleigh and I scheduled a shoot.  It didn’t happen because an opportunity came up that she couldn’t refuse.  I received an email in May, she was still interested in shooting with me.  She was going to bring a magical mermaid costume with her.  Hmmmmmm, not exactly what I was looking to shoot, but what the heck.  At first I thought it might be cheesy, you know wire hanger shaped fin covered with fabric, clam shell bra top.  Wrong!  It was a divers fin and a gold sequin outfit that she made. She wiggled into her outfit and slid into the water. Haleigh is a scuba diver so controlled breathing came natural to her.

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IMG_1460All images are protected by copyright laws and the property of the Artist © Mary Durante Youtt

Scheduling is probably the hardest part of my shoots because the weather is unpredictable and ever changing, some of my models are performing artists with rehearsals or models with day jobs.

The summer is just beginning so I am hopeful.




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…just add water

Life gets in the way, but finally my underwater photography book is printed.  I decided to make the first one a 36 page soft cover 10 x 8″ book to keep the costs reasonable.  $35.99 is better then the hard cover price of $65.

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Anyway, I’m ecstatic about the way it came out.  You can preview it online on – just click on the link … just add water   click preview, then on the right page to leaf through the pages.

Now back to creating new images.


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Filed under photography, printed art book, underwater fashion, underwater photography

Summer is over…

I will spend my autumn and probably winter editing through all my selects from the past 3 seasons of underwater photography for an art book that I will create.  So many fabulous models’ images to go through in what I consider to be an arduous task: the crème de la crème.

I will solicit the help of my husband (my biggest fan and critic) along with another photographer’s critical eye for the final cut.

Here are a two more images of Katie, from the last day’s shoot.

(Janel Carlton deigner)

2 piece gown Sequin Hearts purchased at TJ Maxx

If I’m not blogging for a while, it means I am doing the “work” portion of creating.




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Filed under Life under water, fashion, performing artists, photography, underwater photography

The final five…

I shot with 5 models in three days.  With pool season coming to an abrupt end, I scrambled to get as many models as possible scheduled for the 3 days of 85+ degree days.  Everyday the weather forecasts change as the wind blows so knowing in advance if there will be a shift is hard to predict.  The weather gods were with me…

One of my models, Vettriano, contacted some of her performing arts friends.  Aaron and Vettriano (Stacey) studied acting together in NYC. I set up Sunday, Monday and Tuesday shoots.  The sun was shining, the water temp was in the high 70’s and the air close to 90 degrees.  PERFECTO!

Sunday, Vettriano, Natali, and Aaron were scheduled.  This was my fifth shoot underwater with Vettriano.  It was the first underwater shoot for Natali (a Model Mayhem connection, who was not a swimmer) but she tried her best and I almost always get a handful of good images.  Aaron’s dance background was what I was hoping to capture, it was also his first underwater shoot.

The coral ribbon and iridescent green gowns were both designed by NY designer, Janel Carlton.  I love working with designers and already discussed an emerald green creation for next season

Natali (in Janel’s coral flowing creation) and Aaron

Stacey and Aaron

Black lace top from Luxxel purchased at Steps New York
White skirt from Sequin Hearts purchased at TJ Maxx

white ruffle gown Romeo and Juliet Couture


(in Janel’s iridescent green gown  flowing creation)

Monday, Celine, another friend of Stacey’s (Vettriano) gave it her all.  Her sinewy graceful lines was a plus.IMG_0823 copy copy

(in Janel’s iridescent green gown  flowing creation)

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(in Janel’s iridescent green gown  flowing creation)

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(in Janel’s coral  flowing creation)

(in Janel’s coral ribbon creation)

Celine’s grace makes it look easy. She now has a deeper understanding of the challenges that Stacey told her about.


Tuesday, I shot another of Stacey’s performing artist friends Katie who studied dance for years.  After a few feeble attempts, Katie nailed it.


I adore working with these very talented models.  Thank you all for spending a hot summer day hard at work in a tranquil cool pool.  And thanks Arlene for another summer of letting me take over your home.

Until next season, I will be selecting top images for an art book.

Mary Durante Youtt



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Filed under Life under water, fashion, photography, underwater photography

Water nymph

The summer’s end is coming too quickly for me…  I have 9 more days before my friend closes her pool for the season.   Frantic, I reached out to one of my favorite models with a last minute plea… Are you available this weekend.  Her reply, yes, I’m free on Saturday was music to my ears.   The air temp hit 80 degrees and the water was @ 78 with the sun shining down upon us.

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All images are copyright and property of Mary Durante-Youtt and subject to copyright laws

I will be keeping a close watch on the 10 day forecast to see if I get to shoot any more models this year.  Maybe it’s time to retire to a sunnier/warmer climate.

Thanks Vettriano for a great photo session and a lovely afternoon.

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September song

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…Oh, the days dwindle down to a precious few
September, November
And these few precious days I’ll spend with you

They are all precious days. I would listen to the haunting melody as my mother’s fingertips would glide across the ivory and ebony keys.  The lyrics by Maxwell Anderson weren’t lost on me.  One of my favorite recordings of September Song is by Willie Nelson on his StarDust album.  This was the other song my mother played often and the lyrics are even more poignant as I get older.

Click on the song titles above for the uTube links

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Filed under music for the soul, photography

Lazy day…

Yesterday while my husband rested at the house (pulling weeds and clipping rose bushes), I decided to take a dip at my friend’s pool. I plunged into the water, grabbed a noodle and floated around just basking in the warmth of the sun.  Ahhhhhhhh.

Chatted with Mike and Laurie about my underwater photography.  Yadda, yadda, yadda… blah, blah… hey why not.  An impromptu was about to take place.

I shoot at Arlene’s pool all the time, she’s kind enough to let me store my gowns and backdrops in her pool house.  I had my camera and underwater housing in the trunk of my car – voilà, the couple shoot I’ve been trying to pull together with various models came into being.

3 pc coral creation by designer: awaioflyfe  Janel Carlton

Laurie admitted it was a lot harder she thought, (that’s what most of the models say). we had a bunch of laughs and neither of them seemed to mind cuddling close to one another.

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