New Muses and other
I know my titles are usually a little more obtuse, but I've been reading up on
this blogging lark and apparently I should choose headings that actually mean
it's been a while since I posted as the Spring rush of weddings and events
kicked in, so I thought I'd ignore all those and write a post about my muse
project. At the end of last year I felt like I'd left a few creative
opportunities unrealised and decided I needed to give myself more of a chance
to take a run at these in 2017.
wrote down a few ideas, some wildly improbable, some eminently practical and a
few just plain daft. I then reached out to find a muse.
end I found two. I'd worked with Rachael quite a bit last year, so she seemed a
natural fit as someone I knew I could work with and who liked to play with
creative ideas as much as I did. A lesser known quantity, but a model I'd
promised myself a while back that I'd love to work with again was Caitlin, who
I'd briefly met at a student makeup artist shoot in Edinburgh.
Doll and Demon
February our first foray into this new set of projects was in the studio.
the opportunity to rope in a couple of makeup artists, Rachel Louise Newton to
work on Rachael's look and Taarna Swanson to turn Caitlin all demonic. The
additional retouching on the doll shots was by a talented retoucher, Donna
doll was shot fairly simply with a couple of softboxes and against a white
backdrop. I always envisaged the possibility of adding to the shot in post
production, so Donna's skills were invaluable.
demon however was a different kettle of fish. We were shooting both looks in a
single studio, with a black backdrop against one wall and the white against the
main wall. This meant that Caitlin's shots were very much head and shoulder
closeups, putting the pressure on her to come up with new expressions for the
shots and on me to make the lighting different. I fell back on an old favourite
of mine and chucked some gels at the problem. I seem to remember I also had
grids behind the gels at some point. Then for the shots against the white
backdrop I gelled the background lights.
wasn't actually my idea but I'll take the credit as it kind of arose out of the
shoots Rachael had helped me with. Rachael decided to pig out and I helped. We
piled in sweets from the sweet shop and cakes that really deserved better and
Rachael did her best to eat most of it. We made a hell of a mess but had a fun
shoot, even if I did feel slightly queasy about it. Once again lighting was
fairly simple here and it was more about finding a spot on the studio floor to
get the right angles at.
I'd had some subconscious awareness of the Ghost in the Shell movie, though I
don't think I'd seen their assassin geisha until after I'd conceived of this
one. I was browsing Etsy for a particular mask for another shoot idea, when I
came across this mechanistic Venetian carnevale masks. Laser cut metal and a
gold sheen and I was hooked and then designed a shoot around them. Luckily both
Rachael and Caitlin possessed kimonos, which helped to keep my budget a bit
within the bounds of reasonable.
the help of spectacular hair by Marianna Coletta and fab makeup by Debby Harvey
we took a slightly avant garde alternative approach to makeup and shot both
models without makeup before bringing the masks into play.
shot with a beauty dish as main light, a small softbox as fill and then a hair light on a boom. All against a black
and Rachael both had different and inventive ways of interpreting the
characters the masks, makeup and clothes and it was interesting as we threw
ideas back and forth on poses and angles.
this was more of an ad hoc shoot, but it fell neatly in with my muse project. I'd bumped into Nihoma at Edinburgh's Capital
Sci Fi Con where she had a stall displaying her fabulous creations made from
aluminium scale mail. I gave her my card and we kind of muttered about shooting
at some point in the future. I bumped into her again at Dee Con and finally sat
down with her to set a date. Then with Caitlin returning as model and Kasia
Lerch on makeup we were able to bring the shoot to life.
Unlike my previous shoots, which had all been
at Dreghorn Photography Studio, this shoot moved to the east end and Basement
49. The owner had acquired a couple of old truck tarpaulins from Newcastle and
this one made for a fabulous backdrop for the shoot.
The other shoots
wanted to be a viking, taking inspiration from the TV series. I had some
inroads on obtaining sword, chainmail and borrowed clothing and a shoot was born. Hair and makeup by Ruth Anne Hawkins.
shot with Ruby previously so we had a shoot ahead of Rachael's gluttony shoot
to capture some of her awesome burlesqueness.
Cher, Melissa and
random ad hoc model shoots out and about as I found gaps in my diary. Enjoying
the Spring weather and dodging showers, wind and hail.
Jacki Clark styling
you've followed my posts you may have seen Jacki's name cropping up on some
shoots as she helped me with styling. As part of her studies she needed some
fashion shots at short notice, We shot in between torrential rain alternating
with drizzle as Chic played at the
bandstand in Kelvingrove park. Makeup by Kirsten Hendry.
And last of all a bit of cosplay fun in the Botanic Gardens with Blake