“Woman’s nudity is wiser than the philosopher’s teachings” Max Ernst

So apparently, I can write the blog posts but actually getting around to posting them is another thing. Ah well, one step at a time, eh?

This post is another shoot from my time in The Netherlands, last March (March 2018). I travelled from Den Haag to Zwolle to spend the weekend with a lovely couple who go by the name Sybarite. I spent two full days with these guys and had a blast as we worked together through a variety of sets to create some amazing images.

I have to mention briefly that I was fed some absolutely amazing food in the time that I was staying there, too. Being catered for as a vegan in a household that isn’t vegan is something I’m very grateful for. I’m always wiling to just feed myself when I’m staying with someone as it seems easier, so when people go out of their way to accommodate my ethical food choices when it’s not part of their routine, it’s lovely. But anyway, this post isn’t about what I ate!!

Sybarite have many different themes that they work on with different models that cover an array of styles and levels. Before we started shooting, we sat and discussed the themes and chose the ones we were going to work on together. Some of them didn’t appeal to me and some of them were above my modelling levels, but there were plenty of the themes that I was happy to model and actually quite excited about doing!

All of the work I did over the weekend with Sybarite was nude, but you’ll be able to see just how varied the resulting images are and the many styles we worked on over the two days. I often say to people that nude work gives you so many more possibilities than simply ‘this is a shot of a nude woman’. It’s an incredibly versatile way of working and I hope that this post helps to show that!

For this post, I’ve chosen my favourite image from each set to share with you… Except for two of the sets (which funnily enough were the first and last sets I did with these guys). They were my favourite and I couldn’t reduce it to just one from each of the sets because I liked too many of them, so I chose my top three from each of those ones ūüôā


This was the first set we did and you can tell why it’s one of my favourites, as you will with the last set too. Classical, and very Misuzu!¬†This idea came to us spontaneously as I was talking about my recent trip to Greece where Greeks kept thinking I was Greek… Sybarite had the column and the material to give that goddess vibe and we just went for it and nailed it in just a few minutes.


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Okay, so this image is not exactly my usual style as I’m never overly into the bondage type of shots, but there’s more of a story here which is why I like it… What I mean is, that it’s not just bondage for the sake of it. It’s expressive and even though it’s a bit (very) dark, it works to get a feeling across but while staying classy with the posing.


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The Netherlands is a beautiful country, as depicted in this lovely landscape shot. I will tell you though, whatever plant that straw stuff used to be, it really hurts your feet when you’re walking barefoot (and there’s a shot of me sitting down in the same location and¬†my god did that one hurt ūüėõ ) The Netherlands is very flat. I’d heard that before, but you don’t realise just¬†how flat until you’re there. It’s crazy.


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This is part of a series about witches and magic. Right up my street! The¬†ethereal and spooky look in this image was achieved through the use of smoke bombs and off camera flash. I was asked to try and rub dirt over myself for these shots, but it just wouldn’t stick to me because it was too dry and just kept falling off. I was gutted because I was looking forward to getting all muddy and grubby! Especially as it was the last set we shot on the first day.


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This image is from the first set we did on the second day. It’s a sort of sci-fi theme, where I’m supposed to look like I’ve been beamed down from a space ship or something. Like in the opening of the Mr Bean TV series. In fact, the photographer had a lot of fun when we got back to the house later that day by making a video using the opening of that TV show, but instead of Mr Bean getting beamed down, it’s this picture of me… I’m not even kidding! The grass was cold and wet, but it was worth it to get this image!


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I got to keep my shoes on for this bit, which was just as well because it was more dangerously spiky than the other landscape shot. And wet as well. But look, it’s flat here too!


And last, but by no means least… More classical Misuzu-style shots. This bridge was incredibly beautiful and set in a wonderful location. The scene looks Autumnal but it was actually taken in March, the start of spring. I’m glad this location looked the way it did because I feel like I’m very suited to that autumn vibe. Maybe it’s just because it’s my favourite season, or maybe it’s that my skin tone complements the hues of autumn… But anyway, we came across this bridge by accident and obviously had to stop and shoot here. It suits my classical posing style perfectly and you can see why they’re my favourites!


And that’s that. Thanks Sybarite for having me and looking after me while I was with you, and for taking these wonderful shots. I had so much fun!


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“As you move out of your comfort zone, what was once the unknown and frightening becomes your new normal” – Robin S. Sharma

So where did January go? And now we are halfway through February already. Wow. That was fast.

I seem to be in a minority of people who actually enjoy January. I find it a good time to restart, reboot and realign. I take on a lot of tasks to further my personal growth as most of you probably know. This includes yoga, mediation and various creative endeavours. I did my best and I’m feeling refreshed, ready to take 2019 as it comes.

So I’m actually blogging this year. Look at me, blogging. Here I am.

Every year, I always say that I will ¬†blog more but something had shifted this year, and I feel like I’m actually going to stick to it. Because I enjoy it. And it seems a fair few people enjoy reading what I write. So it’s worth it.

I’m going to mix it up a bit and not try to just narcissistically post a million pictures of me and my musings about each image (I mean, don’t get me wrong, there will be a lot of that… it’s my job, I can’t help it!) but I will also try to write a bit more about what my job entails and my thoughts and opinions on things work related. I think it would be good to give people who aren’t in the industry (models, photographers, make up artists, designers etc) a bit of an insight into this world. It’s not as glamorous as it seems. Sorry to burst your bubble. But it’s way more fun than you probably realise and some of the behind-the-scenes stuff is interesting. I want to share anecdotes and stories too. And maybe some stuff completely unrelated to my work, who knows. Hopefully, that’s all going to be coming over the next few months.

But anyway, for now, I hope you’re having a happy February so far! And here’s one of those narcissistic posts I mentioned earlier… I have a lot of fun shoots I want to share with you from last year, and my lack of blogging has prevented that. I’m making up for it now.


So, in March last year, I organised my first modelling tour in another country. It was scary as hell but I did it! I was lucky enough work with some fantastic photographers while I was there, who were not only talented, but extremely kind and generous people.

I had an amazing few days in that country. I even got some time to have a nosey around Amsterdam and take some pictures of my own. It’s a beautiful place that I will always want to return to.

I didn’t just stay in Amsterdam on this visit. I went to Den Haag and Zwolle too… And got to travel on the double decker trains that I remember from a family holiday when I was 11 years old. I’m not ashamed to admit that I was no less excited as a 26-year-old to be riding that train, than I was when I was 11.

The images in this post were taken in Den Haag by a photographer who goes by the name Shihari. We used his apartment to shoot in and had a fantastic day. I wanted to share a few of the images with you here.


So I stayed with the photographer on the night I landed and we were scheduled to shoot the next day. I was woken up the next morning by the photographer calling my name and knocking on the bedroom door. I blearily responded, wondering why on earth someone would interrupt my beauty sleep (and I’m telling you now, I need my sleep!!)

Turns out, he forgot to tell me before we said goodnight that the light in the room I was staying in is beautiful in the mornings if the sun is shining, perfect for photography… And he was right, so we immediately started shooting.

As I’d just woken up, I hadn’t got any make up on or even brushed my hair, but for the sort of shots we were going for in this amazing light, it didn’t matter… And here they are:


So after that wake up call, and shooting for about half an hour, making the most of the amazing natural light, we had some breakfast and then I got ready properly so we could work on some fashion images. He has a lot of 60s style clothing that I love so we had fun shooting this. I think that era suits me well!

It was even more fun when I was wearing a jumper dress and he said, this needs something… And then proceeded to cut a hole down the front of it! This is why I love working with creatives. They never stop coming up with silly little things to do to add to an image and they aren’t scared to try things. Even if it risks ruining a dress. So here we go:

From a small cut to add a bit of intrigue… Right up to completely ruining the dress (and an instagram safe version, for good measure!)


Nobody who shoots up to classical art nude can resist shooting some of that style with me… It’s what I’m best at and what I enjoy the most as I’ve mentioned in a lot of pervious posts… So we shot some of that too. The question is, do you prefer black and white or colour? I’m leaning towards colour on this one!


Finally, one of my favourite images, purely because it’s so silly. The day I was staying with this wonderful, crazy photographer, he was having a new backdrop delivered. It came while I was there, in a cardboard box and wrapped in plastic. After he opened it, he handed me the discarded plastic and asked me to do something with it. So I did. I wrapped it around myself. But apparently, this wasn’t enough. It needed a little something more… Ah yes, a hat! Perfect!¬†Talk about recycling! ūüėČ

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So there we have it! A brief look into my shoot with Shihari in March 2018… Sorry it’s taken me so long to get around to posting this. I really did have an amazing time on this shoot and definitely hope to return to The Netherlands again at some point in the future!

Thank you so much for reading this! Until next time…


If you like my work and want to support me, feel free to buy me a beer 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‚Äôs starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don‚Äôt see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often it‚Äôs not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it‚Äôs always there ‚Äď 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 ‚Äď they were all messages of love. If you look for it, I‚Äôve got a sneaky feeling you‚Äôll 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.


 

November.

I haven’t completely disappeared and I’ve still been modelling, but my online presence has sort of diminished. I had a very busy November!


I was a NaNoWriMo participant this year. If you don’t know what that means, it means I wrote a novel last month! Yes, a novel. The way NaNo works is, you write at least 1,667 words every day in November to stay on target for hitting a 50,000 word count.

I wrote something every single day in November,¬†finishing with a word count of 54,155.¬†I wrote a novel that has been inside me for nearly a decade. It’s a story I’ve been wanting to bring into the world for a long time and to know that I finally did it¬†is… Well, it’s amazing.

To anyone who has ever taken part in NaNo, whether you hit your goal or not,¬†well done for doing it.¬†It’s a really daunting task, but I was lucky… My story wrote itself for the most part. There were points where I wasn’t sure that it was actually me directing my characters’ actions,¬†rather they were choosing their own adventure! Sitting down and writing a novel is a great experience and I think it’s something everyone should try at some point.

I now have a first draft of something that I can work on for the foreseeable future to get¬†it up to a standard whereby I might actually want someone else to read it…


During November, I also completed a 30 day yoga programme by Yoga With Adriene called Empower. It was a lot of fun and physically challenging, but I completed that too.

I love yoga because it gives me time to myself to reflect and quieten my mind. The Empower programme wasn’t like that, it was more of an intense work out. It was tough and I like a challenge, thoroughly enjoying my 30 days of it. That said, ¬†I’m happy to get back to the slower,¬†self-love, reflective, mind-body awareness, soothing yoga for the most part (maybe a little of the more intense stuff mixed in here and there!).

Again, something else I challenged myself to and succeeded. Adriene is doing (as she does every year) a programme that runs throughout January, and if anyone is interested in doing this with me, it would be great! It’s always more fun when you can share the experience with someone else. I’m quite looking forward to it.


The last thing I wanted to talk about (and probably the most important bit!) is… *drum roll please* I’ve started working behind the lens as well as in front of it. Just for fun, not for work, but even so, it will help my modelling work immensely if I understand the process from both sides.

I had a DSLR when I was 21 but I didn’t¬†dare to take it off automatic: it confused the hell out of me and I really struggled to get my head around how photography actually works. I figured it’s best for me to stick to the side of the lens I know how to rock, right?

But recently, I have been experimenting and I’ve found that I’ve actually taken some pictures that I not only like, but¬†love.


In November of last year, I worked with a photographer when I was touring Gloucester. He showed me some of the sites because he had worked in the city centre for a long time. I got some pictures while we were wandering around… Then later on, he taught me how to take pictures at night with a long exposure. He explained how the aperture changes what¬†the lights end up looking like on your final image. It was the first time that phrases like ISO, F-number and shutter speed had any meaning to me. Before, it all just went straight over my head and I couldn’t understand it. Here are some images of Gloucester towards the end of last year.


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It was another six months or so after then that  I started to look at my camera more seriously again. I did a location shoot with another photographer friend and then afterwards, I took some pictures with my camera. I picked up a bit more advice there and got some fantastic pictures in the beautiful woodland location we were in (it helps when the person taking you is extremely knowledgeable in all things nature and spotted some great things to photograph that most people miss!)


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My Dad helped me to transform my front room into a little studio space. It was partially so I could try out some ideas I had and partially to have somewhere to shoot if the weather is cold or rainy, so shoots don’t have to be cancelled or postponed.

Wy Dad taught me how to set up all of the lights properly, then I had a go at some studio photography in the comfort of my own home. I started to photograph my pets in there and¬†got some images that I’m rather proud of! Turns out, the modelling gene runs in the family: my fur-babies are¬†superstars!


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I¬†spent a few days in Wales with my Dad earlier this month (yes, I know it’s not wise to go to Wales in December… It’s¬†wet!) He helped me to understand the technical side to getting some amazing landscape images. I got some pictures of the beach and of the fog coming down the mountains.


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Personally, I’m really proud of the pictures I’ve taken so I hope you like some of them too. I’m aware they aren’t perfect (learning curve, right?) but I’ve created something that¬†I like and that’s what’s important to me. I’ve learnt that my style is very dark, I seem to prefer darker images and that I favour high contrast too. Not everyone’s cup of tea, I’m sure, but I’d love to hear what you think either way.


I often think about how fortunate I am to have met the people I have and to have been given the opportunities I’ve been given. Especially around this time of year. I’m very lucky¬†to have been helped and supported by many family members and friends.¬†I was always encouraged to be creative as a child and I never grew out of it. That’s probably how I ended up becoming a model, because I get paid to be creative. I’m really going to put more effort into my photography from now on. I have a studio in my front room and family/friends who know lots about photography. What excuse do I have not to?


I want to take a moment to wish everyone who reads this (and everyone who doesn’t) an amazing Christmas and New Year. Have fun, stay safe and make sure 2016 goes out on a positive note and start 2017 without anything from this year holding us back.

Namaste.


I now have a studio that I can put up in my front room. If you’re not a photographer then ignore¬†this, but if you are and might be interested in booking me in this space, here is a list of the stuff that’s in there and a link to the PurplePort casting call:

  • A white background that can be backlit (it works really well, I’ve had a play around with it!). It turns around to be a black background and has a green screen cover with a bit that trails on the floor.
  • Four studio lights (two for the back ground, two for the model with¬†soft boxes)
  • Barn door
  • Coloured gels
  • Honeycomb
  • Snoot
  • Tri-flector and stand
  • A frame and clips for hanging your own backdrops from (I’m hoping to get a black and a white one of those soon too)
  • Sekonic light meter to help with set up.
  • Full set of triggers.
  • I will be getting speed lights soon too and I have a soft box for them already.

Expect to see more work from me in this space from both sides of the lens (it won’t all be bunny pictures, I¬†promise!)


 

Carnival of Shadows

Hello everyone!

Long time since I last posted. That’s going to change. This post is a little different from things that have come before. I’m setting a new intention for my work. I’m going to be putting a lot more of myself into my website and blog posts.

I’m going to write about¬†my thoughts and feelings. I’m going to talk about things¬†I love, things I find interesting, things that scare me, things I’ve done, things I want to do and things I read, watch or learn.

This way, the pictures I post might make a bit more sense and be a bit more interesting. Or, you’ll just scroll past all the drivel, straight to the pictures. That’s fine too. I won’t be offended.


So here we go. The focus of this post is around an idea of a carnival. When I say carnival, I’m taking the definition to mean a travelling funfair or circus.

Often in works of fiction, I think carnivals are depicted as being a bit creepy or sinister.¬†For example, I really really don’t like clowns. They’ve always freaked me out, I’m getting shudders just writing the word. They aren’t suppose to be like this, are they? Clowns are supposed to be happy and jolly, making people laugh with simple tricks. Right?¬†Right??

So why did we turn them into blood-stained, axe wielding maniacs? (Thanks Stephen King, you really ruined it for us there!)¬†This more macabre take on a carnival is the theme around this¬†set of images. Before we delve into the pictures themselves, I’d like to venture into this topic a little more. I’d like to talk about something that may seem a little off-topic, but I promise, this is what made the images what they were. So just stay with me.


I’ve always had this fascination with Freak Shows. Not in the exploitive sense, where in the past, disabled, disadvantaged or otherwise ‘odd’ people were shoved in cages for ‘us normal people’ to pay money to oggle at. I’m not talking about those times where these poor humans were abused and exploited.

I’m talking about the sort of carnival or travelling circus which is made up of the people society has shunned. The people¬†we¬†didn’t want around us. The people we didn’t want to look at. Simply because they looked¬†different.¬†The people who found each other and banded together, to come back into our society to entertain us.

What I’m talking about is the beauty to be found in an amazing array of humans of varied appearances, with unique¬†abilities or skills. A carnival on¬†their terms, not the terms of some money-hungry sadist.

There are a few works of fiction¬†I would like to mention here, to highlight what I mean and explain where this fascination came from. Hopefully to also explain how it relates to the set of images. If you’ve made it this far, congratulations!


When I was in school, one of the first novels¬†we read as a class was a book called¬†Cirque Du Freak, by¬†Darren Shan. Cirque Du Freak is the first book in a series of 12, written for children (obviously). It’s about a boy who becomes a vampire’s assistant as a trade for an antidote to save his best friend who was bitten by the poisonous spider he stole from the vampire at the freak show *breathe*. Sounds great, right? The point is, this is book was probably the start of a lifelong addiction to horror and the macabre. This is where it all started, thanks to Mr Carter (my English teacher at the time!)

The thing I loved most about the book was the people in the Cirque Du Freak, the people with amazing abilities and very unique looks. The ones that stick out in my mind the most are: Mr Tall (the owner, who was… well, very tall), Evra Von (snake boy, covered in scales), Rhemus Twobellies (an overweight man who can eat anything), Truska (a lady who can grow and ‘un-grow’¬†a beard), Cormac Limbs (who can cut off any body part and have it grow back) and¬†so many more magical and interesting characters.

The premise of the book is that these people have been gathered together, saved from persecution by Mr Tall. He gives them all a safe place to be, away from the society that had hurt them. Suddenly, this notion of a ‘freak show’ doesn’t seem so bad. These people have found a home, a place where they fit in. A place where they can be truly themselves without reservation. Isn’t that what we all want?


“The con men put these poor people – who were no different to you or me, except in looks – on display and called them freaks. They charged the public to stare at them, and invited them to laugh and tease. They treated the so-called ‘freaks’ like animals.”

Darren Shan, Cirque Du Freak


So,¬†last year when I was watching through the TV series¬†American Horror Story, I got very excited to find out that season 4 was called: American Horror Story: Freak Show. I knew I’d love it before I’d even watched the first episode.

In this, for anyone who hasn’t seen it, there is a character called Elsa Mars who collects, what she calls her ‘monsters’. She doesn’t mean this in a derogatory way, it’s set in the 50s when things weren’t as politically correct as they are now. Elsa loves the people who travel in the carnival with her. She protects them from the hostile outside world, makes sure that everything within the show runs smoothly, they all have food, shelter and companionship. She gives them all a place of sanctuary in which they can feel safe and not have to hide who they truly are. Unconditional acceptance. Beautiful.

From a girl with two heads, to a guy with ‘lobster claws’ for hands. Everyone found a place, safe from the scrutiny and judgement of the outside world.


“No matinees. No, people don’t come to see freaks in the heat of the day, they come in the evening, when the darkness moves in and speaks of mystery, the unknown. When logic loosens its vice grip and the imagination comes out to play. Night allows the stars to shine and we come alive. No, daytime is for kiddie shows, clowns and Kewpie dolls. Maybe that’s what you’re used to, but you’re in a real freak show now, my freak show.”

Elsa Mars, American Horror Story: Freak Show.


Keep in mind, that these two things are simply works of fiction that I enjoyed. I think it goes beyond a fascination with the bizarre and more towards an appreciation of the differences between us all, the amazing things human beings can accomplish and the amount of love that can be found to counteract the darkness in the world (if you know where to look). I’m nearly done, I promise.


At the time of the shoot, I was half way through an amazing book called Carnival of Shadows, by R. J. Ellory. I’d like to quickly mention how this book came into my life, at risk of making this post wayyy longer than it needed to be! It’s my birthday on the 31st July (you get extra nerd points if you know which fictional character I share my birthday with!) and i’ll be 25 (I know, right. I don’t look a day over 20!).

One of my presents, I’ve already had (because it was a subscription to a monthly box) was called ‘a book and a brew‘.¬†Thank you Matthew! Every month, you get sent a hardback book and a speciality tea through the post! Brilliant idea if you ask me! Anyway, this was one of my presents, and I was allowed to have it early (lucky for me, they ship in the middle of the month!). Obviously I began to read it as soon as I’d finished the book I was reading when it came, and it is this that was on my mind when I turned up for my shoot with Michael Szabo on the 24th July 2016.

In Carnival of Shadows, set in the late 1950s, an FBI agent in America is sent to investigate an apparent murder on the site of a touring carnival. In this carnival, apart form a dwarf who can read minds, a magician with seven fingers on each hand and a set of quintuplets, most of the carnival members didn’t look so different, unlike the previous works I’ve talked about. This made it no less fascinating to me as there was a hint of supernatural magic surrounding the carnival folk and they were still ostracised by society. This carnival was more of the weird and wonderful, optical illusion, fortune telling, popcorn, candy floss, fair ground rides carnival. Like the images you will see shortly. There was still that sense of community away from society with these people. They weren’t accepted by society and all had rather sad back stories until they found and joined the carnival. This is what interested me. Anyway, onto some pictures, yes?


“The sounds and smells of the carnival came up to meet him as Travis parked his car and started down the edges of the field. He had seen the lights and heard the calliope music within a quarter of a mile of the place, and along the edges of the road it seemed that all of Seneca Falls and a half a dozen towns beyond had made plans to be there.”

R. J. Ellory, Carnival of Shadows.


The day of the shoot! The shoot took place in a building that was a nursing home before it was abandoned.

Before the shoot, Michael asked me if I would like him to bring certain items, which included a mask. It was a black bunny mask. Anyone who’s worked with me or has seen my work, knows I¬†love those weird shots. Of course, I said, ‘hell yes, bring it!’Another message asking me if I thought balloons might be a good idea for a separate shot. Again, I said yes. It’s always great to have lots of stuff to play around with, and you never know what’s going to work. So I packed my modelling case full of clothes, and we drove to Standon.

When we got there, we decided to start with the mask. I was rooting through my case to find some¬†clothing¬†that would go with it. Then, inspiration struck me… I just had to convince Michael that it would work!

I’d laid eyes on my bridesmaids dress from when my sister got married. This dress has featured in my modelling work a lot. It’s an amazing dress, burgundy with two long straps that you can wrap around the top half of the body in any way you like to create a different look every time.

Party dress, bunny mask, balloons, abandoned location. I could be a crazy carnival girl, anonymous, ghost, haunting.¬†I explained to Michael that I think this will work and explained where my inspiration had come from. He said we should give it a go. I’m so glad we did because these images are up there in my favourite¬†ever!


Finally, some pictures! I’m normally a strict ¬†“save the best ’till last” kinda girl, but this is too good to save. So I’ll show you my favourite image from the set first, and end up with my second favourite! Here it is: creepy, macabre, crazy, carnival girl in her derelict dwelling. I love everything about this. The pose I was pulling, the general colour and tone of the whole image, the darkness of it all. the way the light is hitting the dress and my skin. Then topped off with the smoke all around. Michael Szabo really nailed it on this one ūüėČ

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But what’s a crazy carnival girl, without her minions of death? “Come to me, my pretties and let’s dance with death!” (I apologise, I’m trying so hard to¬†not be weird, but it just doesn’t work! I don’t even know what I’m saying any more…)

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Just look at the room. Even the peeling, mouldy wallpaper worked for the theme! It also remains rather timeless too.

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This image reminds me of someone at¬†the end of the night, who is¬†the last one left. “Who’s going to walk me home?”

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A close-up!! Well, closer than the others anyway. I love the tone of the colours on this one.

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For me, there’s something about the hands on the face of this next image. Is it innocence or confusion? “Who am I? Am I real? Where am I? What year is this?”

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There’s so much going on in this image. An apparition, cut throat, blood stains, mythical smoke, debris. I love it so much.

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And finally, my second favourite of the carnival set… Just a fantastic image, the colours, the definition, the way the light is hitting my body and the chair, the pose… Just wow! I love it!

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So, the post is not over yet. We have another one of Misuzu’s crazy ideas… I tend to get a little carried away sometimes, especially working with someone else who’s very creative. I had a weird idea of holding the balloons and mimicking giving them to someone. Then it would look like a sort of crazy¬†Alice in Wonderland sort of thing.

As Michael rightly pointed out, it¬†would be hard for someone looking at the image to understand what was going on. It wasn’t until later, when I was in a different outfit, I pointed out that we had sort of missed a trick. If I’d have thought of it, we could have set up a tripod and done a composite. However, all was not lost. When you’re shooting with someone who is awesome in PhotoShop, there are always options. And sometimes, they come out even better than you’d expected! I’m not sure how Michael pulled this one off, but he managed to get carnival Misuzu to give ghostly space girl Misuzu a balloon. I was blown away when I saw this one! It was 100% more awesome than what I had in my head!

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For a little bit of context, this is what I mean when I say space girl Misuzu. I’m not sure why, but I just felt like some sexy alien from another planet or someone from the future.

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And of course, the crows came back for a little while to play with the girl from another time and place.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to read through this. If you made it all the way through until the end, then I salute you! I’d love to hear what your thoughts are! Feel free to comment!

Special thanks to Michael Szabo for all of his amazing work editing these fantastic images. And of course for all the technical stuff I don’t really understand that happens on the shoot as well. F-stops or whatever. You were fantastic to work with and I can’t tell you how happy I am with these pictures!


One last image before I finally shut up! I just thought this was too good not to share! Peace, everyone!

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