Rock and roll and hypothermia
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Photography Blog by Duncan Holmes

Rock and roll and hypothermia

Being the careful planner that I am, I had planned a shoot indoors at a local barbershop. I'd arranged things in advance for an early morning start on a Sunday so that we could fit in with the shop's opening hours. It being winter, I figured a nice warm indoor shoot would be just the thing. The potential venue had a lot going for it, with a retro look, freshly repainted and a checkerboard floor.
 
So the cold Sunday morning found me bright and early in Greenock. I'd lost one makeup artist by the wayside due to ill health, but had planned ahead and had two more people coming with hair and makeup skills. The lovely Katie Ford came to help out again and a new face (for me) Melanie Watson, who was one of the makeup artists I'd seen at the James Watt College show last year.
 
Both arrived outside the shop to keep me company, which was when I got the text from 1 model, saying she'd been up sick all night and was off to hospital. A deep breath and a confirmation that our second model was on the way, and I was still feeling positive about the shoot. Jamie, our talented male model was next to arrive, shivering and trembling off of the slightly delayed train from Glasgow. Aimee, our remaining female model, and her mum were then next on the scene, with my assistant for the day, Billy somewhere in between.
 
Notice that I have not mentioned the barbershop owner?
 
At 8:40 or so, it was time to gather my horde of teeth chatterers and come up with a backup plan. Billy suggested the train station at Wemyss Bay and it proved to be a great choice. We jumped in cars and convoyed to Wemyss Bay. The Seaview Cafe played inadvertent host to us, but they were very accommodating, and did not object too much when we took over their toilet for changing and makeup. They even let us plug in some tongs in the kitchen (though don't tell the other clientele that!). After coffees and a slight warm up, makeup was commenced.
 
Some days later we rapped on the door and got Jamie done quickly so that I could start shooting. We dragged him out into the cold and he gave us some mean and moody looks around the station and down on the wee beach beside the ferry landing. He's a very versatile young man and looked the part in the leather jacket we'd borrowed from We Love to Boogie's Vintage shop.
We went back to the cafe and waited some more until finally Aimee was presented to us in all her retro (and slightly pinned) glory, in one of the fabulous dresses from Psychomoda. The picture above shows some last minute tweaking by Aimee's mum as she fixed the petticoats).
 
So we continued shooting, with two pauses for dress changes, through the next couple of hours or so, around Wemyss Bay station and down on the beach Aimee and Jamie shivering in between shutter clicks, and being totally professional the minute the camera came up to my eye. There was a little patching to makeup, smudged by dabbing at running noses (it's all glamour), and tweaking of hair disturbed by the arctic breeze.
 
This post includes some preview pics from the shoot. I'm quite proud of what we achieved in the face of such diversity. Everybody really pulled together and hopefully I didn't drive anyone else into hospital post shoot!
 
Next week should be the second of the barbershop shoots, for which a barbershop is a key element in the plot and poses. I'll do my best to coordinate it better and smooth things over for that shoot, either that or I find a new shop/salon to try my luck with. Also need to find a suit for Jamie...busy week ahead.

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