Monday, 25 June 2012

TWO ~ Ella Rose & Ivory Flame

Hello! I'm just packing all my fancy things (lingerie, dance-y bits, fashion and interesting accessories) and squeezing in another quick blog post before my jam-packed (with shoots, not jam) Sussex trip (Surrey tomorrow, then Brighton and east Sussex before a studio day at the popular Cottage Studio - there is some time remaining on Thursday afternoon: see here for details and to book some time with me last minute or email me at!).


It's always so nice to work with other models, and the beautiful Holly (Ivory Flame) and I, although different in height/build, always seem to gel so well together in look and mood. We have so much fun working together, giggling all the time and having bizarre little half-conversations to assimilate our poses as we're moving around. One of the best blurted lines ever was 'Did you see that fawn over there?' (well, any dreamy faces and mythical expressions are based on stories going on in our collective head!), and there is a running theme of elbows and hair inhaling. Recently (on a completely different shoot, I announced with whispering confidence that I was going to do 'waterfall arms' for the next click. Holly knew exactly what I meant, and immediately worried aloud about how she would compete with such promise(!), which made us both collapse in hysterics and get a great outtake shot from the photographer at the time. (The outcome of my waterfall arms is yet to be seen; I never had to prove myself.) Hhhm, I wonder if I've just shattered some illusions by exposing the utter nonsense going through our heads when we pose sometimes. Nevermind.

ANYWAY, the theme for our two consecutive days at Eye for an Image studio in Banbury was 'goddesses', the thought being that it might inspire some varied and creative ideas about what to do with two girls. I find that photographers have to think differently about shooting two models at once, and from our point of view the expressions and body language are all important; sometimes the focus is on shapes and intertanglement (probably not a word) and sometimes more about narrative and storytelling, or gentle sisterly togetherness.

....Here are a few of the images I've been sent (with thanks to the photographers for working with us!):

From Karen Jones (Thunder and 'Sun Goddesses'):

From Stuart Thomson (classic curves and shadows) (this shoot lasted literally two minutes at the very end of the day; job done):

From Chris Lloyd (interaction, shapes and... hindu deities! ...Although I'm a Christian and in general very much avoid 'religious' themes, I think the last shot here is pretty fun and funky!):

Hope you like them! There are more shots from other photographers and some beautiful things floating about on the internet... hopefully coming soon! :-)

Saturday, 23 June 2012

White on Black

Four new images from a recent shoot in Dusseldorf with Klaus Kampert, who booked me recently for his 'curvy white nudes on black' project and has kindly sent me some of the results. Klaus is an excellent photographer and known for the precision with which he often requires his models to work. It is difficult and physically challenging to appear through the lens as though one has misplaced particular limbs (or hands or feet), and requires the holding of strange and uncomfortable, off-balance positions while being meticulously directed millimetre by millimetre. But Klaus's creativity and passion, plus his interest in the musculature, structure and workings of the human body (his route into fine art nude photography is telling), made this shoot inspiring and fun - and his wife made the most delicious blend of green and black tea, which I gleefully devoured throughout the shoot, of course! I really hope to work with Klaus again sometime next time I visit Germany.

Monday, 18 June 2012

Déjà vu

More from the marvellous Britalicus!

I love the movement in these. A couple of them remind me of stills from Afro-Caribbean dance (which I flippin' LOVE). To explain my point, you must first watch this youtube video of the incomparable Beyonce (yes!!), in which she starts utterly freaking out at 2mins50secs-ish... That dance sequence is the freest thing and just makes me wanna go back to the carribean coast of Costa Rica and wiggle my butt off. Sorry if you hate her - I can only criticise her lyrics; everything else I have for her is adoring love, loyal since her girlband diva days.

In other mainstream female singer news, Emilie Sande's album is BEAUTIFUL.

In other other news, and only because I like to make the most of the punning potential and multiple themes of any blog post titles I write, I'm officially writing again after a long-ish break, since a massive chat with my Dad (the most intelligent, critical and widely-read man in the world) enabled me to see new plot routes for the novel I'm working on at the moment. 1502 words this morning. And one of my characters has a big problem with déjà vu. You saw it here first.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Extreme Eiffel Tower Exploits, Etc.


I'm writing this from my hotel in Manchester, where I'm poised for a magazine shoot tomorrow, and taking some time to catch up on lots and lots of things, including reading inspiring blog posts about creativity like these, and writing this blog post, which I'm excited to show you!

I was lucky and spoiled enough recently to be taken again to Paris by photographer Jeremy Howitt (see previous entries here and here). It really was a bit of a whirlwind, and since the idea was that we'd spend two nighttimes shooting, we were free to sightsee all day around Paris on the day in between (and although I was free to book further shoots in the area, I thought it would be nice to have the day to wander around and look at stuff instead!!).

On the first evening, post Eurostar, I met Jeremy for dinner before travelling around on the metro (to the accompanying sound of the accordian; this is one of my all time favourite things about France; it really is so unashamedly French) towards Montmartre, to revisit a spot we'd worked on before. Voilà:

(Above is Jeremy's shot of le Sacre Coeur, taken on one of many runs up the stairs to check the status of passersby; below, me in le French mac, then less so:)

The plan was basically then to walk around and try desperately to get enough privacy (in the most popular city in the world...) somewhere with an interesting background. I have a thing about cafés (though I didn't indulge in a macaroon during this trip), and thought we just had to use this place. And I'm bossy. I love the zebra crossing in the frame, too. The staff were just closing for the night, and we had to be quick not to let them steer their wheely bins in shot...

On day two, we went to la Musée d'Orsay to see the current Degas exhibition, which was brilliant! What an amazing place. I bought a really cool poster, plus a set of 6 monet coasters and some Degas/other postcards to boost my, er, coaster and art postcard collections. :-)

Unfortunately, France hates vegetarians, so what could have been an entire day spent browsing the jaw dropping, inspiring and mesmerising (if there'd been time), with just a quick stop in the cafe there, was necessarily cut short by the urgent desire to eat lunch. Ah well, I hope to go back at some point; and we did manage to see quite a lot!

Next on the agenda, after dinner (yeah, basically day time was spent eating and looking at stuff, and also napping after the late shoot the night before) we went to the Grand Palais, which is currently hosting an exhibition of Helmut Newton's photography. Lots of food for thought and inspiration! The highlight was the video, made by Helmut's wife, with behind the scenes footage and some hilarious fly-on-the-wall scenes. Best quote ever comes from Helmut arguing with her (after she notes how fortuitous it is that a model has semi-blinked in one of his images, lending a narrow-eyed, sultry, moody feel to the image): 'You're doing it again. Belittling me. I told her to do that. It is my direction that makes her mysterious and wonderful.' (Or words very similar. Love it.)

After that, aware that Paris is still full of tourists and couples strolling around its streets at 10pm, we went to the Crazy Horse, which was quite an experience!!

And finally, we did some shots in front of the iconic Eiffel Tour. Surprisingly enough, this wasn't actually planned, but I'm so glad we did it! I think these shots will currently hold my record for 'crazy things done in the name of modelling'; I am certainly not the first model to have posed there, but it's still a bizarre, exciting and pressure-filled few minutes (we didn't have longer than that really; and even then we couldn't escape the tourists, lazily-strolling locals or taxi drivers, some of whom gave me a thumbs up sign mid-drive... and the pressure was on for Jeremy who had to control focus in low (street lamp only) light). We certainly didn't set out to be seen; we did everything we could not to be, waiting for what felt like hours for those precious gaps in the stream of people, but in the end it just seemed impossible and we had to just go for it or always regret it. I can say that modelling nude in front of the Eiffel Tower (and, to a lesser-but-still-considerable extent, in front of the café the previous night) is a sort of 'out of body' experience. It's a very odd thing to do. But the structure, power and beauty of the Eiffel Tower, especially lit up so majestically (and I have to mention that at night, the tower's illumination copyright goes strictly to Pierre Bideau), made a wonderful posing partner and some images I'm proud of! And just look at the moon (copyright Moon)!

Saturday, 9 June 2012


Weeeelll, I'm feeling very lucky at the moment after getting back yesterday after another exciting trip to Paris (more on that soon!), then being taken out (post much-needed nap) to see Prometheus; I'll be modelling for the Yerbury Fine Art Nude seminar tomorrow at Pipewell Hall, then next week working with a well known children's book author and illustrator, plus modelling for a mainstream photography magazine front cover up in Manchester (still available in Manchester on the afternoon of the 13th; get in touch if you want to work with me there!), amongst other quick shoots during the week. Sooo busy!! At some point next week I also want to start working on an online course I've applied for so will need to carve out some time for that and begin a schedule for the next 3 months (when I have to complete it by). I am also on a self-imposed writing break at the moment to get my fire back for it and make the most of the bookings I'm getting; the idea is that I will also catch up on reading lots of good books in the meantime to feed my imagination, but I'm struggling to read more than 5 pages or so of the brilliant Love in the Time of Cholera every couple of days...! And I used to read SO quickly!! I am also determined today to watch an episode of Game of Thrones. (In one of my many alternative life fantasies, I would be an actress in exactly this kind of thing - something along the lines of Merlin or King Arthur stuff; a sultry, elegant queen or fairy-like peasant with magical powers, riding my horse through forests and commanding people to fight for justice. (not that I'm actually in any way war-inclined). Yeah... Anyway...)

Good job I am really loving my job (aka accidental career) at the moment! What with the endless non-actual-modelling work to be done (updating, responding, emailing, scheduling, organising flights, buying tickets, coordinating bookings, packing, unpacking...) I'm really not sure how models who work more often than I do manage to have a life at all! Yes, our hourly modelling fees might be more than the minimum wage.... but for all the time and emotion that goes into it, I reckon we deserve it! :-)

Anyway, I wanted to show some new figure shots from the Edinburgh-based photographer Britalicus, taken during my Scottish trip last month. There will be more to show from our session, but I have already put one of these in my portfolio (and eventually I will muster the extreme patience required to update my website via my crashy-McCrash Dreamweaver, with one of these plus millions of new recent shots I want to put on the various different galleries there; it's a case of one new image per week there at the moment.... yawn...), so I wanted to blog a few.

Britalicus was such a pleasure to work with; although hiring me, he asked me at the beginning what I wanted to do for my portfolio! I told him I really loved his dynamic dark figures against the white background, an ongoing project of his, and we ended up having lots of fun with these. I also mentioned that I really wanted to do some strong nude dance work with a dancer, as that's not something I've done yet (and Britalicus has some great stuff in that style), and so there is a potential second shoot in the making for this during my second Scotland trip in August/early Sept. When Britalicus first contacted me over on Model Mayhem (that was back in 2010!!! - I am a slow mover; I finally get to Scotland in 2012. Oops!) his message was incredibly humble and polite, and he described himself as a 'relative novice' and wondered if I would consider working with him; even then it was evident that he would do well, and as I said to him recently; look how his work has blossomed now that I finally have made it over there! Amazing! I have been so impressed with his passion and output, and he's worked with some incredible models along the way. So without further ado, a first round of funky figure studies:

I don't usually seek to give images titles (I think that's the photographer's job, anyway!), but I am calling the middle one 'Riverdance'.