Two Wild and Crazy Guys

In Standard by Danne

dannec4_0001When Roger Lewin and I worked together on Miss Maybelline Statue, we did not realize our symbiotic creativity would ultimately end up in our being in business together, “Lewin and King Photography” became Hot Springs first eclectic photo studio and the place to go when someone wanted glamour and beauty in their lives. His parents, who were very devout Christians, were non-the-less very free thinkers, his Father being a Jew from Germany who had been through much in life.

They let us have an upstairs studio above their photo processing plant and we soon became known as “the dynamic duo” in Arkansas. I would do all the make up and hair for aspiring young models who came to us from a modelling class held at Garland County Community College via teacher Rhonda Walsh, herself a Garbo-esque creature of beauty and talent. We had spoiled rich girl princesses, prom queens, drag queens–including the legendary Norma Christy who started the still running Miss Gay Arkansas Pageant.

Our wedding shots were incredibly beautiful, many taken outdoors amongst the ancient woods and Lakes that abounded around Hot Springs. Roger had a feel for light and I developed little tricks with sheets of gold Mylar to help him capture light that at times was ethereal and almost other worldly. We also offered private “naughty” photos, the beginning of the a Bed Room make over craze that came later in the 1980’s, making many ordinary Hot Springs housewife appear as a bomb shell or movie star sex vixen for their husbands or boyfriends! Unheard of in this rigid but still eccentric town!

We had many people who came to us offer “services” that we ignored. Roger and I Had the reputation of being “damn fine looking boys” but we always acted with propriety. Of course, I loved Roger, we were oddly connected on many levels. But life took our paths in other directions. Our parting in Chicago was not pleasant, a fact I regret to this day. He is back in Palm Springs, a church man and a family man.

LewinKingModelsAfter Hot Springs Roger and I started up a band in Chicago called The Designer Dogs. He was an incredible bass player, but I did not have the money any more to back them up like I did with KIDZ! The dynamics of several hot headed musicians living in one big old house in the Chicago suburbs was far to much for me to handle and jump start my own career. The biggest thing they did was backing up a female dance troupe I had put together and choreographed a number promoting Sebastian Hair Products who was a sponsor of the event I was putting on for City of Hope–a fundraiser that included the Who’s Who of Chicago including legendary Maria Tallchief!

My dance was “The Cellophane Girls” cellophane hair products being very hot at the time, and Roger wrote the song and the music.They were actually all good! Our personal dynamics were not so good however and the Lewin and King duo began falling apart.