Regular readers will know that I am a member of the Fashion Collective which is a group of models, designers, makeup artists and photographers who get together and collaborate on projects.
Occasionally the group will have hang out sessions in one of the studios and anyone who wants to shoot can arrange something on the spot. It was at one such gathering that I met Noah.
We started off grabbing a number of items from the clothing collection and then headed into the studio that has a bedroom scene as one of the sets.
This enabled us to do a boudoir shoot in a space set up so that it had room for lights. In this case I was using two lights with fill light being provided by a large umbrella, and a smaller softbox as the main light .
Noah had a very European look so after a quick wardrobe change we headed up to the French Cafe in the grandstand and shot using natural light. I felt that the image was always going to be best in black & white.
At the top of grandstand ramp there is an area that appears to a wind trap for leaves and so we made good use of it.
For the final image in the sequence I wanted to portray Noah as a determined and confident person, and what better way that having her striding down the ramp.
Shelley had bought a range of lingerie with her and fortunately several of the pieces were from a similar set, so we talked Sam into taking part. While I shot the initial set with Shelley, Sam applied makeup in a similar style so that both girls were consistent.
By this stage the sun was really coming through and so I tried to place a large diffuser panel in its general directions to try to block some of it. This was partially successful. While the main light was still the Godox AD600 in the seven foot umbrella, I was finding that the light was a little uneven especially on Sam.
I initially tried to position a reflector to the left of the camera, and use the sun, but this was not working so I mounted a light on the other side of the fence and angled to to bounce off the reflector. At first this was done bare bulb, but that was creating too many shadows on the back wall, so I put it into a softbox so that I could control the spill better.
Shelley-Ann is a relatively new member of the Fashion Collective, who answered a casting call from me. We had arranged to do a series of shots and as the second one involved the use of my paddling pool, we started them all around my back yard. We roped in another member of the Fashion Creative, Sam Moredo to do the makeup for the shoot.
We have an area at the back of the section with a very large tree and our woodshed which provided a great location.
The weather for the whole day had been extremely changeable, with short runs of blue skies followed by rain. I initially started using my Godox speed light in a 24″ softbox for the initial shots but then brought in the Godox AD600 and out it in the seven foot Westcott umbrella. There was just enough room under the trees for it to fit.
Towards the end of this section of the shoot, the cloud decided to break and sunlight started to stream through resulting in very strong differences between light and shadow.
By means that I won’t go into I came in my possession a whole lot of music tapes that were destined for landfill. So I thought could I use them in a shoot, and the answer was yes. Several nights of extracting the tapes gave me a large container full of them.
After the original model for the shoot bailed twice, I arranged to shoot with Verity. We started in the bathroom using the tape in place of water in the bath.
Then we moved out to a set I had created in the garage and shot a slightly different look starting with using the tape as a dress. It created a unique look, but probably not one for wearing in the wind.
I then changed it up and brought in some of the empty cassette cases.
Lighting for the bath shoot was a single godox strobe in a 24″ beauty dish. Lighting in the other location was a 7″ umbrella behind me to provide a base light and a beauty dish camera right.
Of of the great things about being part of a creative collective is that opportunities come about to shoot in unusual locations. This was the case of a shoot in a cowboy themed bar in Wellington. We were given the opportunity to spend several hours in there before the bar opened.
It was great working with models Rachel, Hayley and Michael both individually and together.
Lighting for the series was mainly done with a single Godox AD600 strobe in a 24″ beauty dish.
The final shoot of the day was with Jess Boyack. By the time of thinking about the shoot I think everyone was exhausted. With no outfits booked we decided to make it a bath shoot and use a simple length of material for cover.
The bath in question was on wheels and it was moved into position in the carpark mid afternoon with the hope that the sun would warm the water up. That was of limited use and despite the addition of a couple of jugs of hot water it was fairly cold.
I ended up grabbing left over flowers from another shoot and by the time we shot had quite a number of people helping out.
Jess Baider was the model for my third shoot of the day and for this shoot I wanted to do something different. Earlier in the day I had seen a dress design by Jen Carlton made entirely of metal, and I managed to denogiate with the photographer who had it booked to use it first.
I also built a set using a whole lot of wine barrels. I had positioned a backdrop behind them to remove a rather ugly background. This proved to me almost a waste of time as the light falloff was such that it was almost in complete blackness.
I was using a single light with the 7 foot umbrella and a reflector to add in a little fill light.
Part of the arrangement was to swap out the metal dress for a design by Evem and this was used in the second half of the shoot. We also ventured outside at the end of shoot for a little variety.
Model: Jess Baider
Dress: Jen Carlton Leather & Hide
Headpiece: Black Widow Fascinators
I had shot Hayley before as part of my honours set. When she arranged to use a gothic style dress then it was obvious that we were going up to the attic as it was the ideal location for such a shoot. That of course meant lugging all the light gear up four stories. I set up a small shoot area and decided to add in a couple of props of my own.
After working through several of the rooms up there we moved down to an open space at the top of the ramps where the ivy was changing colour. We also tried a number of images with falling leaves.
Headpiece: Black Widow Fascinators
Day two of the Great Trentham Collaboration did not start well with my first model of the day being one of a number who failed to show up on the morning. There was also not the same level of energy level in the room.
Fortunately for me one of the other photographers in the room was in a similar position and so she agreed to be my model. I had brought along my own red dress and a few props and having checked that she was not averse to fur, we headed out for a couple of locations around the base of the main grandstand.
The third shoot on day one of the Great Trentham Collaboration was with Ashley-Jane Cole. I had shot AJ three years previously at the waterfall in Upper Hutt and again when she was at a recording studio as she is a very talented singer/songwriter.
AJ had chosen a swing dress from Deranged, which styled up for a ballet theme. Her makeup was done by Eden Gibbons.
On the upper level of grandstand was a cafe with a Fence look so I made up of a large mural for my first set of images.
We then moved up in the attic area where the large windows surrounded with wines provided plenty of great light and interesting backgrounds
We then moved to the outside and particularly around the base of the vines that encase the building.