Questions and Answers

So every year I say I’m going to write more on here and every year I end up getting too busy to actually do that. Ah well, that’s life. I’m taking a bit of time to write this post because it’s one I’ve been wanting to get down for a while. The purpose of this is to answer some questions I commonly get asked about my work.

Being a freelance fine art model isn’t something that people expect to hear when they ask me what I do. A lot of people don’t even know it’s a job. And I understand that. If someone had told me this is what I’d be doing before I started doing it, I would have laughed at them. But here I am. Doing what I do. I love it. I love my job, I love being able to express myself creatively and get paid for it. Living the dream. I don’t make loads of money doing this… I do it because it’s fulfilling and fun and I genuinely think it makes me a better person. I’m so much more confident than I used to be because of my work. And I think that’s truly wonderful. So I want to share a bit of insight with you here.

I gave people who follow me on social media the chance to ask me stuff, so most of the questions I’m answering here come from my followers. Thank you to everyone who responded and asked me questions. There are a couple of questions I’ve included that are ones I’ve put in, simply because they’re questions I get asked a lot. I hope you enjoy reading my responses!


What made you get into modelling?

Well, as I said, I never thought I’d be a model. I always had people saying to me, “You should be a model!” but I never really thought anything of it. That’s just something people say as a compliment, right? So I was never thinking to myself that modelling was something I wanted to get into.

I went to university and got my BSc in Psychology from The University of Kent and then stayed on to get my MSc in Forensic Psychology. I moved back to Stoke after I graduated and while I was thinking about what I wanted to do with my life, I started working at Evans (a plus sized clothes shop) with my older sister. I actually quite enjoyed my work there. I got to work with the customers to find clothes that made them feel amazing and confident. That’s a really priceless feeling. Anyway, while I was working there, my dad was setting up a photography business and asked me to help out as a second photographer on a shoot he was doing because I could just about stumble my way through working a camera. He had hired a model through a website called PurplePort and after working alongside my dad with the model he had booked, I remember thinking to myself that I bet that would be a really fun job.

So I signed up to PurplePort, thinking I could get into modelling as a bit of a hobby. This was in January 2015. I quickly got asked to do a TF shoot with a local photographer (a TF shoot is one where you don’t get paid but instead are given images from the shoot to use for your portfolio). It was fun. I enjoyed it a lot, despite it being absolutely freezing! After this shoot, I did a few more TF shoots and was pretty soon having people contact me asking to work with me, and asking what my rates were. People wanted to give me money in exchange for my modelling after just a few shoots!

I started getting more and more modelling work and was becoming quite popular as a model. In September 2015, I left my part time job at Evans and went into modelling full time. I don’t regret my decision one bit. I feel like I’m living the dream! This isn’t what I thought I’d end up doing but you only live once, so I figure that I may as well spend my time doing something that I love and am thoroughly passionate about 🙂

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An image from my first shoot back in January 2015 on location in Staffordshire.

©Kevin Sheldon


Are you a full time model?

Yes, I am. Modelling is my only job and my only source of income. I often get asked what my ‘day job’ is… And well, this is my day job. The work comes and goes. Sometimes I’ll be shooting every single day for two weeks solid. Sometimes I’ll only have a handful of shoots in a month. That’s just what it’s like being freelance. However, just because I’m not shooting every day doesn’t mean that I’m not working. Admin is a huge part of what I do. A lot of behind the scenes work goes in to me making the most out of modelling as a career, and it’s not all just pulling poses while someone clicks away! Responding to messages, putting out casting calls, reviewing mood boards, researching the best travel options, uploading images, organising images I’ve been sent, writing references for people I’ve worked with, posting on social media, and writing blog posts (like this one). So when I have some ‘down time’ from shooting, I’m actually still working… Just catching up on all the admin I haven’t had time for while I’ve been busy shooting! I think I spend as much time in front of a computer screen as I do in front of a lens 😉

I also spend a lot of time travelling. Catching trains around England… And more recently… planes to Europe. Greece, The Netherlands and Bulgaria are already ticked off the list! It really is a full time job!

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A shot from my shoot with the duo known as Sybarite in Zwolle, The Netherlands in March 2018.

©Sybarite


Do you have some sort of dance of gymnastic background? You seem to have a wide range of movement and flexibility in your posing but also a grace and subtlety to your work.

I get asked this a lot. Firstly, thank you. I really love hearing that I manage to convey grace in my images because that’s what I’m going for. I often say to people that my aim with my fine art nude work is about femininity, beauty and grace, rather than nudity. To me, the nudity is an almost incidental aspect of this type of work.

But anyway, no I do not have any gymnastics or dance background. I am quite possibly the most clumsy and least co-ordinated and graceful person in the world… Which I find pretty amusing given the type of work I do! I do yoga on a daily basis but I’ve always been really flexible anyway. That’s about the extent of my ability in this area! The way I pose does have a dance-like beauty to it, but those shots are usually taken just a second or two before I fall on the floor 😛

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A location shoot in Staffordshire, October 2016. This location involved a huge climb but it was so worth it!

©Stephen Plant


Some of your portfolio involves low-key lighting and environments that accentuate the interplay of light and shadows or silhouettes. These work well with you as the model. Is that a style you enjoy and how much of it is led by yourself as the model or is it an avenue that the photographer wishes to pursue?

I really love low-key work. I prefer dark and moody images in my own photography and I think that is in part because I love those dark and moody images in my modelling work. Playing with light and shadow is a lot of fun. I enjoy shooting this because it’s a bit hit and miss sometimes, and that makes the results even more exciting when you get it right. It also means that the model and photographer have to work more as a team, which makes the whole process a lot more enjoyable. For me, anyway!

With regards to the second part of the question, it’s usually a bit of both. Some photographers will book me if that’s a style they want to shoot, because they know it’s something I’ve done a lot of and am competent at. That goes for photographers who’ve never tried this style before as well as photographers who specialise in that type of image.

If I’m on a shoot and I see the potential for low-key or silhouette work, I will always mention it to the person I’m working with in case it’s something they would like to try. Very few photographers have a solid plan of what they want to shoot and are quite happy to just go with the flow, incorporating my ideas with theirs to create something unique in whatever studio or location we are working in. Not all studios or locations would be suited to this type of work; but when it’s an option, I’ll always point it out if I think it’s something the person I’m working with would be interested in.

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An abstract low-key shot from a group shoot in October 2015.

©Steve Betts


Do you think art nude works best in colour or black and white?

Ah, this is one of my favourite debates. There are some photographers out there who will insist that art nude must be black and white. This is because when you have an image in black and white, the light and dark parts of the image are more prominent and this is important in art nude work. However, I do think that omitting colour altogether from art nude photography is a bit too restrictive. Colour images have their place in art nude photography. Especially if there are interesting colours in the frame offering a complimentary colour or stark contrast to the model or other parts of the environment.

Personally, I lean towards a preference of black and white images in general, so would say that the majority of my favourite art nude images of my own work have been presented in black and white. However, sometimes there is an art nude image that just works in colour and by converting it to monochrome would lose some of the magic that I see in a particular image. So basically, my answer is a bit of a non-answer… I think generally black and white works best, but there is no blanket rule.

A monochrome and a colour shot taken at a Mycenaean bridge on my first trip to Greece in November 2017.

©Garden of the Muses


Do you prefer studio or location shoots? Or is it just down to the weather/environment/assignment?

It’s very rare for a shoot to be booked on the agreement that ‘it’s a location shoot but if the weather is bad, we move into a studio’. This is mostly just because you have to book a studio and if you didn’t use it, you’d still have to pay for it! It tends to be that I’m booked for more location work in Spring/Summer/Autumn with some studio work in Spring and Autumn when the weather isn’t as predictable; and pretty much exclusively in studios over Winter (with the odd crazy photographer who still wants to work on location during the colder months!).

There are some ideas that will only work in a certain place, whether that’s studio or location so that will dictate where the shoot needs to take place. In colder months, you don’t have the option of working on location as often. And that’s just how it is.

In terms of my preference: if I had a choice between working on location or in a simple white wall studio with studio lighting, I’d always choose location. It’s more fun and inspiring. A little unpredictable in terms of weather, light, and of course, there’s always the chance that you won’t be able to shoot somewhere because of a loss of access, other people being around etc. But that just makes it a bit more exciting!!

I’m happy working with a few studio lights and a backdrop, don’t get me wrong, and these shoots can be really fun and crazy too. But generally, you’re quite limited in what you can do. They’re great for controlling the environment for bodyscapes, portraits or working with projectors etc. but it would all get a bit boring very quickly for me if I was visiting the same studio all the time. But not all studios are the same. There are an increasing number of natural light studios appearing. They’re usually based in old factories, warehouses or houses and offer something different again. These studios are more interesting to work in because you can always find something different to shoot, without the worry of having to postpone a shoot because of bad weather. These sorts of studios I class as almost like location work and I enjoy working in them very much.

Studio days are pretty fun (this is a day when a model is at a studio all day and photographers book hour-long slots with them) and of course, this can only happen in a studio really, so studios are good for that reason. These events are a good way to meet a lot of new photographers in one day, or work around a theme where photographers would only want about an hour each anyway.

Generally, I’d say I prefer working on location amongst ruins or woodland, with natural light studios as a close second, followed by a more traditional studio environment. But I do love shooting wherever and I enjoy the variety!

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A shot from a location shoot in Staffordshire, October 2017.

©Michael Szabo


What’s your routine on the day of a shoot?

I’m not sure I have an actual routine for a day when I’m shooting, especially as each shoot will require different things from me, but here’s the gist of it:

I make sure to contact the photographer a couple of days before a shoot to check everything is still okay for the shoot and to see if they have any last minute ideas that I may need to pack for.

I usually get my bag packed the night before so I don’t have to worry about it in the morning! I will look over past communications with whoever I’m going to be working with to make sure I’ve got items for all the themes we’ve discussed.

If I’ll be working through lunch or travelling for a while, I’ll also make sure I’ve got food ready the night before too. I quite enjoy cooking, and with me being vegan, it’s not always easy to buy food on the go so I always make sure I’m fully prepared!

I’ll often wash and straighten my hair the night before a shoot too, because this can take me about an hour (most people don’t realise that my hair is naturally somewhere between curly and wavy, making it a bit too unpredictable for shooting!). If I’ve had a busy day, I’ll wash my hair at night and straighten it in the morning, but mostly I will just go for it and get the drama over with the night before 😛

On the morning of a shoot, I’ll get up and have my breakfast (the most important meal of the day) and slowly start to get ready. I always give myself plenty of time so I don’t have to rush. My make up is always better when it’s been applied with care, rather than in a rush!

Then I’ll get dressed into clothes that I will have chosen the night before. I make sure to wear clothes that don’t leave many marks on the skin (something you learn pretty quickly as a model) and make sure that it’s both comfy (especially if I’m travelling for a while) and easy to get into/out of (to maximise shooting time if in a studio but also to make things easier if shooting on location!)

And then I’ll make my way to my shoot or wait to be picked up, depending on the shoot. If I’m travelling, it’s usually by train meaning I have a 30 minute walk to the train station. I always make sure I have extra time because I don’t like being late and having to rush. I will have worked out what time I need to leave the night before.

That’s about it I think. If I’m being particularly good, I often wake up a bit earlier to do yoga and meditate before I leave. I find it’s a great way to set yourself up for an amazing day. But lets face it, we aren’t always that on top of things 😉

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A yoga themed self-portrait from January 2017. The pose is called crow pose or bakasana and is an arm balance.

©Misuzu


A lot of your work is art nude. Do you find it weird at all being naked in front of photographers?

I think that unless you’ve been involved in shooting art nude in some way, wether as a model, photographer, make up artist, designer etc. then the concept of nudity in this environment may seem a bit odd. For me, this is my job so I don’t even register that I’m naked when I’m working. If I was on the streets and suddenly had no clothes on, sure I’d notice and it would be really weird… but when I’m working, it’s just normal!

I specialise in classical fine art nude… So being naked is just what it is. My body is the tool I use to create the art work that I do.

Sometimes, I have to actively try to remember that not everyone sees nudity in their daily life as much as I do, so I have to be mindful of that. I’m always looking at work from my friends who are models or photographers, so I’m seeing the nude female form all the time… and it’s not weird for me. Strangers sitting next to me on the train, however, might find it a bit shocking that I’m casually browsing pictures of beautiful naked ladies as they appear on my social media. But never mind.

Anyway, off track a bit. No, it’s not weird for me. And thinking back, it wasn’t even weird in the beginning either. If I’m there to shoot art nude, I’ll whip my kit off and get to it. Professional, like. I’m not overly body confident… I mean, we all have those things we aren’t 100% fond of with regards to ourselves, but I’m totally at ease when I’m working nude around photographers. They’ve booked me looking the way I am and they’ve already seen me naked before we’ve met so there’s little point in me getting all self-conscious about it! That’s the way I look at it anyway.

I have to laugh sometimes when we’ve stopped for a coffee break on a shoot and halfway through my coffee, I’ve realised I’m still nude. And often, the photographer hasn’t noticed either. That’s how not weird it is!

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A behind the scenes shot of me setting up for a self portrait shot, taken on my trip to Bulgaria in October 2018.

©Colin Grist


Is your job ever scary? You go with photographers you’ve never met before by yourself to locations, and sometimes in foreign countries.

My job would seem pretty scary if you don’t know everything that goes into booking a shoot. At least, the way I go about my work, it’s not scary anyway.

I know sometimes friends and family who don’t know the industry get a bit worried about me. In their eyes, I’m swanning off into the middle of nowhere with complete strangers who are probably axe-wielding-maniac-serial-killers… Or jetting off to a different country to meet someone who is likely just running a human traffic operation. And I understand this view. But it’s wrong.

Most of my work comes through a website called PurplePort, which I’ve mentioned earlier. On the website, models and photographers leave references for each other when they’ve worked together. I always look at the references before agreeing to work with someone. I don’t often work with people who have no references for my own safety, and just because someone has references, doesn’t mean that I will work with them. I’ll always look at the quantity and quality of the references before agreeing to work with someone. I’ve learnt to read between the lines a bit with them too. If someone has references that are pretty basic, then I’m always extra cautious to check them out. I also look for things like who has left the references; I look to see if models I recognise have left positive references or if they’ve been to studios I know, things like that. You can tell if someone will be fun to work with on the length of the reference people have written after shooting with them. It’s a good system and I know that PurplePort are careful to remove people who aren’t genuine. It’s also common practice to message others who’ve worked with that person too. If someone has left a negative reference, I’ll find out why by messaging whoever left the negative reference, and then deciding if I still want to work with them.

Even if there are positive references, it doesn’t always mean that someone is 100% safe. I always make sure that someone knows where I am and who I’m meeting. I have also been known to do a bit of internet stalking on people too, just to make sure they are who they claim to be. It always pays to be extra cautious and I’ve found that I have to trust my gut. If I get any odd feelings about working with someone on the basis of their communications or things they’ve said to me or asked me, then I won’t work with them. It’s better to be safe than sorry!

I have worked with people who don’t have any references but always in as safe a way as possible: making sure I’m not going to be anywhere alone with them (I don’t accept lifts from them, for example). I make sure in this situation that it’s a group shoot with people I trust, or that I’ll be working at a studio where the studio owner will be around; or go with another model or a make up artist, or take a chaperone with me. Everyone has to start somewhere and there will have been a point at which everyone had no references!

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A shot taken in Den Haag, March 2018 on my tour to the Netherlands. I stayed with the photographer and I’d never met him before. This is a great example of checking someone out beforehand… I really enjoyed spending time with Shihari and will be staying with him again next time I visit Den Haag 🙂

©Shihari


How do you choose who to work with?

I work with photographers of all levels of experience and ability. Part of the thing I love about my job is getting to meet people from different walks of life, and we are just converging over one thing we have in common: our desire to create art. I think that’s a pretty special thing.

I don’t particularly choose people to work with. Nine times out of ten, they’ve chosen me. As long as someone isn’t dodgy (see my answer to the question above!) then I’ll work with them. I don’t care if someone is a professional, has been doing photography for their entire life… or if they just picked up their camera the day before.

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A location shoot in Staffordshire, taken in June 2018. Yes, those balloons are tied to my nipples.

©Danny B


What’s the weirdest thing you’ve been asked to do for a photograph?

I love this question. And I get asked it a lot. I’ve been asked to do many strange things in my job… and it’s all part of the fun! I don’t know if I can answer the weirdest thing, but I can give some pretty fun examples:

  • More than once I’ve been asked to get into a cage, but the best one was when I was in a bird cage and there was just enough space for me to curl up into a ball. The cage had to be lowered onto me. It was only good for a few shots though, as I couldn’t really give much variation of the pose as I wasn’t able to move!
  • I was once asked to wear a cat mask and was given a fake rat to play with. Me being me, I immediately got into character and had the poor little fake rat (called Scabbers!) dangling out of my mouth my his tail!
  • I was at a studio once where there was a coffin in the corner. Of course I got into it and we got some shots of me coming out of the coffin as if I were a zombie!!
  • On a Christmas themed shoot, I was given a ‘Santa please stop here sign’ and told to do something creative with it. So I sat on the floor with my legs apart and put the sign between my legs. I found that pretty funny 😛
  • Recently, I was on a trip to Bulgaria with another model, four photographers and the guy who ran the trip. We all stayed in a villa in the second part of the week and once we’d chosen our bedrooms, me and Stacie Mai (the other model) realised there was another room off the one we had chosen. It was this weird Playboy themed room, with mirrors over the bed (I wish I was joking!) and playboy cushions etc. One of the photographers there likes to take Polaroid pictures and so we got a set of super tacky polaroids in this room with me and Stacie. They were so much fun to shoot but really tacky! It was amazing.

I’m aways up for shooting weird stuff so these are just a few examples of the whacky things I’ve been asked to do. There’s likely a hell of a lot more anecdotes I could give, but I could probably write a book on them, so I’ll leave it at that… For now!

Two of the aforementioned Polaroids from Bulgaria 2018. Modelling by me and Stacie Mai. I love this set so much. It couldn’t get more tacky if we tried 😛

©Andy Harding


And that’s all for this post! Thanks again to the people who asked me questions. I really appreciate people taking the time to think about what they would like to know. If this post has sparked any further questions from anyone, let me know and once I get enough, I’ll do a round two! I really enjoy taking about my work, and having the opportunity to answer questions people might have is really cool. Thanks for reading this! 🙂


If you like my work and want to support me, feel free to buy me a coffee by clicking here for PayPal or here for Ko-Fi. I’m also on OnlyFans, so click here if you would like to sign up to see images before anywhere else, exclusive content, and selfies!

Valentine’s Day 2017

Valentines Day. What a load of shit. Chocolates, flowers, cards, teddy bears. Waste of time. Waste of money.

Just kidding.

… Okay, mostly kidding.


I’ve never really been a huge fan of V-Day, and that’s not coming from someone who is single and bitter at the world. I’m not. I just find it all a bit forced. I mean, as a couple, you have your anniversary to celebrate. If you’re married, theres the day you met, your fist date, your engagement day and your wedding day. So why all this V-Day nonsense on top of all that?

I don’t care how in love you are or how well you know someone, your ideas of what to get your other half have got to be maxed out when you add Valentines Day into the mix as well.

Everyone is showing off what they received as if that in some way validates their relationship, rather than simply being with the person who bought them all the useless junk in the first place. Especially now with social media and everyone fighting for the approval of their peers or strangers they’ve never met through likes and comments.

Madness.

Huge cards, bouquets of flowers so big that they make you sneeze if you even think about it, so much chocolate you’re at risk of being diagnosed with type II diabetes in your early twenties. And all this not long after Christmas. It all gets a bit out of hand if you ask me.

That is, until like me, you start to think bout Valentines Day as a way of celebrating the concept of love, rather than this bizarre, ego boosting shit fest. You don’t have to be in a relationship to experience or celebrate love. You have parents, children, siblings, friends, co-workers, pets… You have love for many people in your life. Even single people can celebrate V-Day.

For the last three years, my Valentine has without a doubt been Yorick. My bunny. I love him more than anything else (sorry Matthew).

I also always make sure that I take time to wish a ‘Happy Valentines Day’ to a few of my close friends. I want to make sure they know that they’re special to me.

They’re important.

I love them.

So it makes sense for me to let them know they’re on my mind on a day where we are all gathering around to celebrate love.

And then there is the thing we all shy away from. Self love. You can’t fully love others unless you fully love, accept and care for yourself. That’s the hardest love to give.

So I made sure to show love to myself on Valentines Day too. I did a lovely self-love yoga practice and meditation to let myself know that I’m important. I’m there for myself. That probably sounds a little silly to everyone who isn’t into that kind of lifestyle, but I wanted to mention it, because it’s important. I think so, anyway.


Valentines Day… It doesn’t have to be about couples and all that lovey-dovey nonsense. It can be about your friends. About yourself. And of course, our pets. Because honestly, animals are the best people we know. Unconditional love.


On that note (and there are some images coming, I promise), I wanted to share my favourite quote about love. In the spirit of things, you know?

Chick flick alert: Love, Actually.

One of my favourite movies ever. It’s about love. Not everyone ends up with a ‘happy ever after’ in the film. But everyone’s okay. Everyone’s alive. Everyone has love in one form or another.

That’s life.

It’s not always picture perfect.

But it’s ours.

That’s what Valentine’s Day means to me, anyway.


So here’s the quote:

(Hugh Grant, by the way! *swoon*)

Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. General opinion’s starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don’t see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often it’s not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it’s always there – fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends. When the planes hit the Twin Towers, as far as I know, none of the phone calls from the people on board were messages of hate or revenge – they were all messages of love. If you look for it, I’ve got a sneaky feeling you’ll find that love actually is all around.


So here are some of the pictures I ended up with from a little session in my home studio set up on V-Day. Doing something that I love. Modelling. And photography. Okay, two things that I love.

I bought a couple of little props and just went for it.

I won’t say anything about each image like I usually do.

I’ll just let you have a look through, see what you think.

Some shots appear twice as they’ve been edited a little differently. I think they look cool side by side.


Love

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Classical

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Chocolate and Wine

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Heart

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I hope you enjoyed looking through those. I had fun shooting and editing them!

Just because you can’t take life too seriously, I’m gonna end this post with a few outtakes. Me, stuffing my face with chocolate. Classy.

Peace and love. Namaste.


 

World Photography Day!


Hello! This is just a quick post in honour of World Photography Day!


I thought I would take this opportunity to share some of my favourite images with you all. These aren’t necessarily the best images I have, but they are all ones that I love because they’re a bit different. I have chosen images that are all black and white (I definitely have a preference for the monochrome!). I really hope you love them as much as I do.


Before I show you these few images, I would just like to take a moment to thank everyone I’ve worked with. Thats photographers, studio owners and make-up artists. I’m very lucky to have worked with some amazing and talented people, and without them, I wouldn’t be able to do this as my job. I’m very grateful to you all.

I’m also very grateful to all of the people who support my work by sharing and commenting and liking. As an artist (yes, I am an artist, I just use my body instead of paint, or whatever!), it’s always good to know that your work is appreciated by people who aren’t in the same business as you. It makes it all worth while. Thank you 🙂


As today is all about the photography, I’m literally just going to post my chosen images below and not ramble on about them as I usually do. Today, the images speak for themselves.

Photography is a powerful form of art. It captures a moment in time and freezes it forever. I think that’s a really beautiful thing. I hope you enjoy these images.


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©Joan Blease


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©Kevin Lightyear


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©Duncan Stafford Photography


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©Mark Pendlebury


Misuzu

©John Gould


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

©Peter Crips


Misuzu

©Paul Smith


Misuzu

©John Gould


Thank you for taking the time to read this, have a beautiful day ❀


 

“I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future.” – Ebenezer Scrooge

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Christmas seems to sneak up on me every year. It comes and goes so quickly… I wish it could last forever, it’s my favourite time of year. I absolutely LOVE Christmas.

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I love putting up my Christmas tree and decorating my house (after untangling all of the lights of course!).

I love listening to the same 10 Christmas songs that are on every Christmas album, EVER.

I love watching the same few Christmas films that I watch every year.

I love the feeling in the air as everyone rushes around to try and get everything done.

I love the relentless enthusiasm people have to make each other happy.

I love buying people gifts and watching them open them.

I love the lights, the tinsel, the laughter.

*~*~*

Christmas for me, really is magic.

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So then, it seems to follow that as I love Christmas so much… And I love my job… Why not put the two together?! So naturally, I give Brian Cooper a call and we set about planning a shoot similar to the one we did on Halloween…. But this time, we cracked out the tinsel and lights!

Again, this shoot was thoroughly enjoyable, and  even better, I didn’t end up having to wash blood off my body when I got home (for this to make sense, see this post!). Anyway, enough of me waffling on… let’s show you some of the images we created!

*~*~*

The first thing you need for a Christmas photo shoot is OBVIOUSLY a sexy Miss Santa outfit! The candy cane stockings really set this outfit off I think 😉

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I love these next two… Very similar pose, but each one has a completely different feel to it because of the facial expression. The first has an air of innocence about it… The second, more seductive. Which Miss Santa do you prefer?

The obvious next step in a Brian-Misuzu shoot… Is to take off the clothes… But let’s keep the hat and gloves (obvs.). I absolutely love this shot, AND it’s Facebook friendly. Winner 😉

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I don’t do hats. I always tell people this. Brian loves them… And to be honest… We HAD to get this shot…

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So after a Miss Santa… We move on to ‘Santa’s Helper’. Misuzu the Elf. I don’t know how these elves get any preparation for Christmas done when they’re so busy looking cute! I think ‘Elf’ suits me 😉

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“Dear Santa, I’ve been very, very, very good (most of the time)” This sounds about right!

Especially looking at this next image. There’s not much innocence in this one!

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“I’ve been very, very, very good.” I don’t think so… The whole naughty/nice thing is over-rated anyway… ‘Just give me my presents, or I’ll attempt to seduce you until I get them!’ is what this image is saying to me.

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The expression here… You almost believe that I DID try very hard… Almost…

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You knew there was a reason you didn’t quite believe that innocent expression… These two… Not so much.

Look closely… Read the sign… This is my favourite image from the shoot. Personally, I just think I’m really funny. I take the credit for this idea. I’m hilarious and you know it 😉

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The credit for these ones goes to Brian… He bought the sack and announced “I’m going to put you in this!” I didn’t bat an eyelid.

Typical Misuzu Style… Let’s do art nude… Next to a Christmas tree. That’s Christmassy, right?”

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I’m pretty sure that my goal with my modelling career is to do art nude in as many different settings as possible… In the Woods? Check. In a derelict building? Check. Covered in blood? Check. Next to a Christmas tree? Check. With baubles hanging from your nipples? Well the credit to this has to go to Brian… And don’t ask how we got that bow to stay there…

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No Christmas themed shoot is complete without being wrapped in tinsel…

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I’m waiting for someone to comment, “I like your baubles ;)”

I hope you’ve enjoyed looking through the silly images me and Brian created for this festive season. We both had a blast… Lots of giggling because we think we have great ideas!!!

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We did shoot something for those who aren’t so fond of all the Christmas nonsense… So here ya go… Bah-Humbug!

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The last few images I have for you, are, in my opinion, very beautiful…. I love Christmas lights so much. Evidently, the way I can show this is by wrapping my nude self in them!

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I saved the best picture till last… So before I show you, I wish that everyone who is reading this has the most magical Christmas. I hope you’ve all had a great year this 2015, and if you haven’t, I hope 2016 holds better things.Whether you’re celebrating the end of a fantastic year and appreciating all that you’ve accomplished, or if you’re raising a glass to all the things you hope to do next year, I wish you all the best this holiday season.

I, personally, have had the BEST year. It’s not always been smiles and laughter, that’s just the way life is… But it was this year that I found my passion for modelling. I’ve worked hard and I’m doing something that I want to do. I’m where I want to be. I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has helped me to achieve this. You know who you are.

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“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight!”

“With Opportunity, the World is Very Interesting” – Beatrix Potter

[intro]

I did my first tour at the beginning of this month. I spent four days in Gloucester. It was amazing. Not only was it my first modelling tour, it was my first time being in a new place by myself. I kept busy and had plenty of work while I was there, but also had time to explore and take some photographs of my own! If you’ve never been to Gloucester, I recommend you go. The cathedral is lovely and there is a Beatrix Potter shop too. I couldn’t resist buying myself a little Peter Rabbit toy as a memento of my trip. If you know me, you’ll know that I’m a little bit bunny crazy!

Anyway, enough gushing about how exciting it is to be in a new town by yourself, exploring all things historical and literary…

On to the work I did while I was there! The only reason I was in Gloucester was because of a shoot I’d had planned for a long time. This photographer uses the screen name samthedog on PurplePort and his name is John Gould. John contacted me shortly after I started modelling saying he would like to work with me and we planned for the shoot to be in the summer. After two date changes, one because of John travelling and one because I was practically eaten alive on another shoot I had a few days before… We re-arranged our shoot for Tuesday 10th November 2015.

This shoot was totally worth the wait! Four hours flew by… But not without an array of incredible images! Some of them are included in this post. I wanted to draw attention to this set as I thoroughly enjoyed shooting it (and I’m sure John did too) and the results are fantastic.

High Key

I’ll start off this post with my favourite image from the set and I’m starting with the high key images, simply because those are the ones we shot first!

Misuzu

This picture to me, perfectly depicts beauty and tranquillity. The anonymity of this image makes it easy to relate to.

Misuzu

This one is a slight variation on the first image… It depicts more grace than beauty, the way the hands are touching the body seem gentle, almost accidental.

Something completely different! These two images I’ve chosen to place side by side. They hold a very similar pose as the previous two images, but with a more abstract goal. What do these images say to you?

MisuzuReaching up. The goal of this image is the long line that extends from the fingers, all the way down the arms, the curves of the back, down the leg and to the toes. The thing I like most about this image is the harsh angle of the left leg, compared to the softness of the line as it traces all the curves and natural lines of the body.

Misuzu

I’m not really sure what to say about this image. I love it but I’m not sure what it is about it… It’s just quite an unusual photograph!

Misuzu

This is a pose I’ve done before… But it’s been shot at an angle, rather than straight on. The thing I love about this pose is the way it draws out all of the lines of muscle and bone on the back. By shooting it from an angle, it gives a whole new array of lines, more places for the light to hit and for shadow to form.

Misuzu

Just an unusual pose to create a shape with the body. I think it’s rather effective!

These two images are posed to make the body look rather bizarre. With the first, not only is it an angle that you would not usually see in a photograph, it is a rather unusual pose! I love the way the hair pools on the floor and the triangle of negative space where the left knee is bent. With the second one, the body’s symmetry draws your eye and the cascading hair adds an extra feature to it.

Low Key

Now on to some low key images… A quick change of background and a quick change of lighting (and a cup of coffee) to create some images that are completely different to what came before.

Misuzu

This is the low key version of the first image of the post. At a different angle and in lower lighting, it gives a totally different feel to the image.

 

These two images have an almost sinister feel to them to me. The first seems almost like attempted self comfort and the second seems to look almost like an escape. Maybe I’ve been watching too much ‘Criminal Minds’…

Misuzu

Similar images to this can be seen throughout art nude photography. The low key lighting and the hidden face seems like it’s speaking about depression or anxiety, a darker mood.

Misuzu

This is why I love low key lighting. Creative shadows preserving modesty and light catching the body to create lovely highlights. My favourite part about this image is the light catching the left arm, behind the body and the fact that the hair is the perfect length to just touch the floor!

Misuzu

So many triangles in this image. Photography loves triangles!

These three images are all edging into erotica. The way the body twists, stretches and arches make these images. Again, the light skimming the body and leaving creative shadows.

Misuzu

This is a lovely shape. The arch, the ribs, the expression. I love it.

Misuzu

I remember taking this picture… I was lying on the floor trying to get my head around how to actually position my limbs in the way I wanted to in my head. Upon seeing the image, I think I did pretty well, but believe me, it wasn’t easy! At the time, I felt like I had eight limbs, not four…

Misuzu

I started with my favourite image of the shoot… Now I’m finishing with my favourite low key image from the shoot. This speaks volumes to me.

[conclusion]

To conclude, these images are the product of four hours well spent. I say four hours and completely ignore the amount of time John spent editing… But four hours is easy to remember and it has a nice feel to it to think that all the magic happens within that short window of time! John, I just want to say thank you for a fantastic shoot and for all the great work that came from your side of the lens, all of the technical camera stuff I don’t understand and all of the meticulous work in PhotoShop! Until the next time…