Banana George

"Banana" George Blair

“Banana” George Blair

Best nickname is sports.

I photographed  “Banana” George Blair for the first time when he was 90 years old in his Florida home.    Banana George was born on January 22, 1915.  He wore many hats, but to me will always be known as a barefoot waterskier.

Banana George and his wife JoAnne welcomed me into their home in 2005.  I set up a yellow background in their yellow garage after they pulled out their yellow car.  I had Mr. Blair put on a yellow suit, and he sat on a yellow chair.  After the shoot, Mr. Blair showed me his yellow boat garage, which was storing his yellow boat.  Waterski magazine published several photos from the shoot.

A few years later, I photographed Mr. Blair for Boating magazine.  They were doing a story about crazy people in the boating industry.  They featured Mr. Blair, well, because he was in his 90’s and still barefoot waterskiing!  I had Mr. Blair sit on a yellow chair, overlooking his yellow boat, yellow boathouse and yellow wind sock on the lake.  Since he was a barefooter, I had him take off his yellow shoes.  He was wearing yellow pants, yellow shirt, yellow hat and yellow tinted glasses!  He was also wearing a Mayor of Cypress Gardens button, yellow of course.  I lit the scene with a Profoto 7B and softbox.

I asked Mr. Blair for an estimate on how many bananas he thinks he’s eaten in his life.  He responded with 25,000.

That’s a lot of yellow.