scene models

One Of The Boys

It is now the end of winter (well, almost), but an editorial that I shot at the start of the season has just been released. I’m proud to announce that I’ve been published in The Model Magazine, from the US. My most recent editorial, One Of The Boys can be found in both the print and online magazine, and you can even buy it! (Check out the August 2017 edition.) Here is the online teaser featuring my work.

I was working with models from GTR Global, who were amazing as per usual. Keegan I had worked with before, but Lorenzo was a new face. It was really different working with two models at the same time, but I really enjoyed it. Having two people to pose opened up more possibilities for composition and variation. I think Keegan and Lorenzo looked really good together.

I wanted to shoot at an athletics track, as I’d recently stumbled across one by accident and liked the graphic lines and bold red colour of the track. With that in mind, I got a bunch of ‘sporty’ casual wear from Myer and H&M to dress the boys in.

It was, as per usual, a really cold day in the middle of winter, so I was glad that I wasn’t having to get changed every few minutes, and got to stay snug inside my coat (sorry boys.) I had hoped to catch some golden winter light, but the clouds had other ideas. But one of the skills of a photographer is being able to adapt and “make it work” in any scenario, so that’s what I tried to do.

One thing that I noticed whilst shooting was the change in the way that Keegan worked in front of the camera. Having shot with him before, I couldn’t help but compare his current on-camera presence with that of our last shoot. I noticed that he had improved a lot since the time before, and seemed a lot more comfortable in front of the lens. That was really nice to observe. It really like working with talent on multiple occasions, so see how they progress, but also because it’s just nice to work with good people again.

Thank you Keegan and Lorenzo for being great models.

MODELS: Keegan Venturato @ GTR and Scene // Lorenzo Sandy @ GTR and Chadwick

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Testing With Lara de Koster

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I love working with new talent, and testing with new faces is one way that I get to constantly do this. Often, the photography and style of images needs to be quite simple, as the model will need images that show them with minimal makeup and styling. This makes expression and posing very important.

A few weeks ago I was asked to shoot Lara de Koster, who had only moved down to Melbourne a few days before. Lara is a musician too, but is aiming to break into Melbourne’s modelling scene. She had such a sweet look, and was a little shy at first, but she quickly opened up in front of the camera.

I had Marlene Olsson as my hair and makeup artist. She is brilliant at what she does, so I was glad to have her on board. Marlene agreed to start off with a more natural look, but then wanted to experiment a little later on once we had the basic shots in the bag. I think its important to let your team experiment when testing, so that everyone gets something out of the shoot. So of course I was more than happy to let her experiment too!

Our second look was more of a wet hair look. Here, we focused on expression and conveying a bit more attitude. Lara is such a sweet girl, so this was a challenge for her. But I think she did really well, and by the end of the shoot she let loose a bit more and was able to convey more of an attitude through her face and posing.

Finally, Marlene wanted to experiment with braiding the hair for one last look. I was amazed at how quickly she put this look together. The braiding was incredible! For this look, we wanted to focus on the textures in the hair, but a strong expression was also important.

I’m looking forward to seeing where Lara’s career in Melbourne takes her.

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The Boy Next Door

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I have been shooting a lot of tests lately, which has been brilliant for the soul! February has been off to a crazy crazy start, filled with corporates, retouching, teaching and events, so its been really nice to be able to shoot loosely and fluidly as well.

On Tuesday I worked with Thomas, who has newly been signed with Scene Model Management. This was his first studio shoot, and I was really impressed with how good he was! Having only ‘officially’ become a model a few days before, Tom was a little unsure at first, but he quickly warmed up and was nailing ‘the look’ in no time.

The beauty of working with fresh faces is that they don’t have a lot (if any) of images in their books yet, so there is a lot of creative freedom. I initially thought that Tom would look great with quite strong, structured images- bold posing, intense expressions, and well cut garments. This is the mood board that I made for the shoot…

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We got started with studio lights, with a white shirt and some dark pants. It was when Tom put on the jacket that he started to stand more comfortably, and I noticed that he seemed to move better when he was feeling more comfortable. The next look, we went for overalls with no shirt underneath.

And bang!

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Instant comfort zone.

From there, the shoot changed direction totally from the mood board. Because it was a test, it was totally fine for it to evolve and move fluidly, and I felt that the look and feel that we developed really worked for Thomas.

We also went outside, to my favourite ‘wasteland’ looking location. Unfortunately this place is going to be built up soon, so I’m trying to do as many tests there as I can whilst I can still get in. I love the metal structure and the random plants growing everywhere.

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This is one of my favourite from the shoot, but I was torn between the left and the right image. Which one do you prefer?

Thomas was fabulous to work with, and a great guy too. He took on direction well, and I think he is going to be a big name in the industry soon!

Published In Solstice UK

Very excited to see my work published in issue 3 of Solstice magazine in the UK. This series is called ‘Colour Is Cure,’ and features some stunning Antidote activewear made by Aussie designer Lara Ulasowski.

PHOTOG || Me
MODEL || Peggy Ford @ Scene
HMUA || Jyoti Chandra
ASSIST || Bella Plush

If you want to hold my work in your hands, the MagCloud link for purchasing the issue is here

Marionettes and Students Visit

Oops, haven’t blogged in a while (yes, same excuse as always…) I have so much to share. If you’re a subscriber, prepare to be bombarded with new posts. If you’re not a follower… why not click that button?

Anyway, after the great wrist incident of 2015 (aka when I broke it on day 4 of a 2.5 month overseas trip) I had to stop working for a while. Photography does require a certain level of wrist and arm fitness, due to putting up and down equipment and holding cameras. I usually work 7 days a week (and love it) so after two days of resting I was going insane. I am more functional now, but still not 100% normal. But luckily able to shoot!

Last week, the final year students at Photography Studies College visited my studio. I used to be a student at PSC, and this studio visit has become a yearly occurrence. Basically, the students come to see me, a “professional photographer” (note: hahahaha) in my natural environment. To make it more interesting, I set up a lighting demonstration or little fashion shoot. This year, I decided to shoot a marionette and puppet inspired editorial shoot.

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I had an amazing team on board for this shoot, and was so excited that I came in the day before to set up the lighting. My model was Thea from Scene, I had Marlene Olsson doing hair and makeup, and my partner in crime Kat Menze styling both set and wardrobe.

We got in early, drank copious amounts of coffee, and knocked off two looks before the students even arrived. When they did, my team took a rest and I had to stand up in front of the beady-eyed students and talk about my career path. I tried to be funny- sometimes it worked. Then I let them all have a go with my medium format camera (most were too scared of breaking it to even look at it!) and we had a little q&a session. Then the students left, and it was back to work.

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I had told Marlene to get creative with the hair and makeup, and do whatever she wanted or felt like. She did not disappoint! Thea’s hair transformed to a ball of curls and ringlets about three times its normal size, and her face looked like a beautiful doll, with shiny gold rims around the eyes, and delicate gold ‘tears.’

Kat also blew me away with the set. We have wanted to incorporate set styling into our collaborations, but have never seemed to get around to it. What started with just a brown backdrop with the end of the roll showing developed into a simple ‘attic/workshop’ inspired space that could be moved around and changed easily. We pulled in some boxes and random bits of panelling form around the studio, and Kat decorated with stuffing, tulle, and other lengths of fabric. But the biggest innovation for me was using an old messy drop sheet as the base on the floor to cover the bright white cyc. It not only added texture and interest, but it saved me hours retouching. Thanks drop sheet.

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The shoot ran super quickly, with Kat matching outfits at lightning speed, and Thea just looking brilliant in every frame (sorting through and choosing even one to retouch has been both a nightmare and a dream because they all look amazing!) Davey (my assistant for the day) and I moved the lighting and set elements around to create different scenes for each look. I think this really helped to stop the series looking stale or repetitive.

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We wrapped at 3:30, in time for Thea to get to her classes at uni (she is not only beautiful, but very smart!) I wasn’t even tired, despite having been up since 6, because the shoot had gone so well. I couldn’t wait to retouch some shots, but there was a whole studio to pack down, as well as bags of Lincraft stuffing and fabric petals to sweep up.

Keep an eye out for these shots in print soon!!

TEAM
PHOTOG || Steph Doran
MODEL || Thea A @ Scene
HMUA || Marlene Olsson
STYLIST || Kat Menze
ASSISTANT || Davey Biasi

Welcome To Colour

A few years back, when I was still studying, my partner (who was interested in photography at the time) collaborated with an amazing makeup artist by the name of Jyoti Chandra. I loved her work, and her personality, and had wanted to work with her ever since. But I thought, she would never want to work with me. So when I replied to her casual facebook post “who wants to shoot?” and she said yes, I was really excited.

We had decided to do a colourful shoot. Something bright and fun and spontaneous. Just what I needed in my folio, which seems to have an aversion to colour at the moment. Jyoti turned up at the studio armed with props and garments, and bright paper backgrounds. We got talking straight away like we had seen each other only days ago, when in fact we had only spoken a handful of words to each other, three years prior.

It was going to be a great shoot!

Whilst hair and makeup was being done, I started testing out some lighting. I usually use a chair for this (which is not that accurate, as a chair has quite a different shape to a person’s face), but because the fabric began much higher than chair-level, I had to improvise.

Behold, my temporary model. She was very co-operative- didn’t complain or move once during my testing!

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We had a few different ideas to play with, as well as a table full of accessories, props, and other fun things. We also had two models from Scene to work with- Olga and Stephanie. Olga arrived first, and we decided to start out bright. We used a piece of striped fabric as a background, and I light the set with my reflective parabolic, and flat lighting on the background. If you look at my folio, it is (in general) quite shadowy, with lots of blues, blacks, and neutral colour palettes. So it was very refreshing to shoot something bright and colourful. A little scary too?

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Olga was fantastic. Moved well, and fit into the characters we created quite easily. Whilst Jyoti worked on Steph’s makeup, Olga and I shot through around 4 different outfits, playing with accessories and poses each time. I usually shoot quite quickly, and this was no exception. I know when we have got the shot, and I don’t like to keep models going on and on and on, because it wears them out too. Moving quickly keeps things fresh, in my opinion. Plus, my phase files are huge, and having to sort through so many can take even the harshest critic a week.

With Olga wrapped, we began on Steph’s set ups. Still using bright colours, but with more of a punky/graphic vibe.

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Photo from Jyoti’s instagram

Steph was great to work with as well. Behind her tattoo’d, short haired exterior, she was very sweet and I wanted to keep her! She also knew how to emote, so pretty much every shot was strong. We had a few coloured wigs for Steph, which added a pop of colour to the images. I knew we had to watch out for the hair getting caught in the eyelashes, because it is a nightmare to retouch. So I ended up being a bit of a wig police.

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We shot a heap of looks in a short space of time, even some without wigs. The final shot of the day brought us to a gold metal shoulder ‘accessory’ (I have no idea what to call it!) It looked sort of like dragonfly wings, and draped over the shoulder. There was something about those last shots that were special, and I can’t wait to have them retouched and ready to show the world. But I guess you will all have to wait and see what we created!

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Photo from Jyoti’s instagram

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PHOTOGRAPHER || Steph Doran
HMUA + STYLIST || Jyoti Chandra
MODEL || Olga Gurkina @ Scene Melbourne
MODEL || Stephanie Hall @ Scene Melbourne