Ethel (Simmons) Hennesy on her wedding day, abt. July 17 1924, with Zoe Hennesy

Ethel (Simmons) Hennesy on her wedding day, abt. July 17 1924 (the day the license was granted), with Zoe Hennesy. She was married in Franklinton, Washington Parish, Louisiana.

Original photo

Restored, colored photo

Not knowing the color of Ethel’s wedding dress, I tried a variety of shades. My first inclination was to go with this shade of blue. I also tried various yellows (too bright) and pink. The pink was a nice option but eventually I returned to this shade of blue because it brought out the dress’ texture more than any other color. Zoe’s dress also I chose to do in blue as yellow was far too bright, and pink flattened the image rather than adding any depth to it.

This is a nice photo of Ethel. In later photos she is more severe, quickly becoming the matron. Here she looks like a strong matriarch in the making, but there is a relaxed confidence that is replaced with a certain stark quality later. Her arm thrown about Zoe’s shoulder…it really is a very casual wedding photograph. Her attire also markedly contrasts the more formal attire of her mother’s wedding, and the formal wedding of her daughter Jean. Aware that she had a hard childhood in which she took care of her siblings, one could read into her expression, “All right, I’m out of there. Going to have my own home now.”

Ethel was 18 years old.

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