October 26th, 2010[gallery link="file" order="DESC" columns="4"]
I love pure inspiration when it happens on it's own. My latest shoot was one of those occasions when it all comes together creatively and practically. It started when I met 17 year-old, 6' 0" tall new model Nori Crain. She was looking for a local photographer to work with for some better portfolio shots, and mentioned that she was considering moving to Milan to work in the European market. Knowing what she was looking for from my experience shooting in Milan, I new of some location ideas of where to shoot with her. Just some white walls in shadowy sunlight but nothing more than ordinary. Then while I was standing on my back patio the night before we shot, an idea came to me from out of nowhere that I have never seen done in print or any fashion editorials- I could make her shadow have a personality of it's own. Thus "Shadow Play" was created and I began putting together the styling and looks immediately. I've seen this concept done in Bugs Bunny cartoons, but just never anywhere in the kinds of fashion magazines I read. It's not to say that it's never been done before, it's just that I didn't get the idea from something I saw, it happened out of thin air. I love when creative energy just whispers in your ear, and something original comes to life. It's what being an artist is all about.
Nori was a pleasure to shoot with, and one of the biggest reasons why is the fact that she was so into being a part of cool projects. She was on time, enthusiastic, gracious in her demeanor and just so very willing to dig in and do whatever needed in a very professional way. For all you potential models out there wondering what you can do to get more shoots- in short, be as valuable to the photographer as you can be. Nori was able to take direction easily, and was also able to take the good with the bad. I'm particular about not just letting models use a bunch of fake-looking poses to call it a fashion shot. I want an energy from the model that can be recorded on film. Nori was able to listen to me try to get that out of her, and she did her best to see what I was wanting. When she "got it", boy did she get it. Some of the most stunning editorial shots I've gotten yet. Really pro stuff from someone who is only 17 years old.
I styled this one myself. Out of necessity, I've had to learn a bit more about styling since being in the desert southwest there aren't many (any at all) stylists here. In L.A. and New York there are as many as there are photographers because a good one can make a living at it. It's not really my thing, but I do really enjoy putting together my own outfit designs into my shoots. I think good styling is a talent all it's own, and a skill I definitely like to include in my abilities. It's just not something I see myself doing full time!
I really love to just get out and create. Explore ideas and let my own "idea generator" rev up. It keeps me dialed in to what I can dream up for commercial clients and gallery exhibitions. I keep lists of specific ideas that come to me on a pretty consistent basis- so much that I can't find time to shoot them all. Some of these ideas will become upcoming ads for the companies I shoot for, and others may be editorial shots for magazine spreads, modeling agency work or whatever. I've got some pretty innovative ideas for up-coming shoots, so we'll see what happens. I want to thank Nori for being a very talented and amicable model, and Audrey (who has done makeup and modeling for me before) for putting together a very fashion makeup look together for this shoot. Looking forward to the next one.