A couple of weeks ago, two of my talented friends and I planned an impromptu trip to Paris to shoot some cool photos. My dear friend Physalis lives in Paris and kindly offered us a place to stay. While we were getting ready for the shoot we discussed possible locations and she came up with the idea of shooting at the beautiful and famous cemetery that shall remain unnamed because as we found out, it’s totally illegal to shoot there..
Anyway, everyone was on board with this idea because, let’s face it, it’s one of the most beautiful places in Paris. So we packed our gear and some awesome outfits that Physalis put together, and got on the metro.
We had a bag full of clothes and lots of make-up, Physalis dressed Julian up and Ashley did some truly awesome stuff to his face. While they were working I scoped the area and found some spots with great light and cool backdrops, and also experimented with some leaves in front of my lens to create some fun effects.
Only about 20 minutes after we started shooting, a security guard showed up. He saw Julian first, rocking a latex corset and a bright blue beard. That must have been an interesting view. The guard only spoke french, and I only understood half of what he was saying. Luckily we had the french Physalis with us and she talked to the guard. He told us we had to either pay a huge sum or we had to leave. But worst of all, he told me to delete ALL THE IMAGES from my memory card! I couldn’t allow that to happen, as I had so many great pictures on this card and I did not want this shoot that we were all so excited about to dissapear. So I played a little trick on him. I noticed that Physalis was trying to distract the guard, she kept talking to him and asking questions, so I had some time to be sneaky. I had three cards with me, but made it look like I only had two. All the images from this shoot were on one card that I kept hidden in the palm of my hand and then slid into my wallet as I grabbed the other two cards. I formatted those cards, since I had already imported the images that were on them, and showed him the ‘NO IMAGE’ message on my camera screen. HALLELUJA! He bought it and told us we could take our time to clean up and pack, and walk around some more, but we were not allowed to take any more pictures.
We were so incredibly lucky that Physalis was with us to talk to the guard, and that my boyfriend urged me to take two extra memory cards with me in my wallet. Even though our shoot was cut short and we didn’t get as many pictures as we wanted, I’m very happy to be able to share these results with you.
Tips & tricks!
I thought it would be fun to tell you little bit about how I achieve some of the effects in my work.
A lot of people assume it’s all Photoshop, and clients actually ask me if I can retouch their photos to look like a certain photo from my portfolio. When I tell them that most effects are actually not photoshopped at all, I usually get a surprised look.
In reality, it’s really very simple. I hold stuff in front of my camera and I see what it does to the atmosphere of the image. I have a collection of strange fabrics, plastics and other transparent things that I hold in front of my lens to create a certain effect.
This image, for example, was created using cling film. I simply made a little hole in the cling film, and shot through it. Sometimes it’s as simple as that!
model Julian Bingham, MUA Ashley Wolthers
For the photo below, I actually used one of the coloured filters you’d usually put in front of your flash, only I put it in front of my lens. This creates a very vintage look with very little effort.
promo shot for Wither’s Avenue
And finally, this last photo was made using a sheer tulle-like fabric. A really cheap little curtain that I got at Ikea and actually use most often. When partially in front of your lens, it creates a very soft white vignette that can make your images look very dreamy and fairytale-like.
shot for Tante Suiker, model Britt Bush, MUA Ashley Wolthers
That’s all for this blog! I hope it inspired you to try out some silly things, too. You might be pleasantly surprised by the outcome.
Last week I had a fantastic shoot with an incredibly lovely team.
As usual it was an all-girls club ( that just keeps happening! ) and we were all bursting with energy, motivation and inspiration.
The team consisted of MUA Ashley Wolthers ( www.ashleydesign.nl ) designer and stylist Sannie from Skeletons in the closet ( http://www.skeletonsintheclosetclothing.com ) and model Whitney Marcial from MaxiMe Models
At the moment, all of my photoshoots take place in my livingroom because since I moved to Amersfoort my house is considerably smaller and we don’t have a seperate studio space ( boo! )
However, I do have enough room to create a little makeshift studio and most of the time it works perfectly.
You certainly won’t notice when you see the final images. It looks a bit silly on backstage pics, though…
The theme of the day was black and gold and we shot three different looks in total. We started with a pretty basic look with pretty simple light and worked it up to an extravagant look with coloured light and lots of shine!
For the first shot I used two flashes, one with spot with barndoors + grid and one with a reflective umbrella. It’s a very simple setup but it almost never fails.
I added some subtle colours in post.
For the grand finale I added a red filter to the frontal flash with umbrella. By doing so all the white light is gone and you get an interesting mix of red and blue which really works well on Whitney’s gorgeous dark skin.
Here’s a straight from the camera shot of a happy dancing Whitney.
These dark images with no white light at all don’t always work. But when they do, they’re certainly spectacular!
It is so frustrating that when I shoot something that I personally really love, it’s impossible to get it published!
This was the case with the White Widow editorial that I shot in October 2014 ( that long ago already! Damn.. )
As usual, the location wasn’t quite glamorous, and we had lots of interest from all the people passing by.
It was a really cold and windy shoot, but the wind did actually help us to create awesome shots, Lizzy’s hair and all the lace and tulle just moves so beautifully!
I loved the idea of a ghostlike bride and I personally really like how the images turned out.
However, the photos just don’t seem to fit in with any current magazine issues, so I decided to forget about that and just publish them for ourselves, because my awesome team deserves to finally use these images!
Model : Lizzy Meow
Make-up : Ashley Wolthers
Styling : Nina Konstanti
And of course, some fun behind the scenes images! See the team in action 🙂
I always jokingly say I live in the ghetto, and while that may be a litte bit true, my neighbourhood has a lot to offer.
Once again, an outdoor photoshoot with awesome results took place only a few steps from my house.
With a great team consisting of Liz Scarlet ( assisted by Robin ), Ashley Wolthers, my go-to make-up artist, and model Britt Busch, I had a lovely photoshoot last week.
It was hot outside, too hot to actually do anything, but that’s not an option when Liz has a huge amount of pretty jewelry to play around with.
We went for a colourful, summery, happy shoot. Bright and expressive, girly and sweet.
Not something any of us would usually do. But sometimes, stepping out of your comfort zone is a very good idea.
Ashley made sure the colours on Britt’s face were popping ( she did an amazing ombre lip !! ) and wisely spent a lot of time relaxing in the (semi)shade.
Some of my favorite pieces were made with porcelain and gold… so precious!
The sun wasn’t only hot, but bright as hell, too! There wasn’t a cloud in sight. All I needed for perfect light was a reflector, wich had to be handled with care, I didn’t want to blind our lovely model.
With a model as expressive as Britt, it isn’t hard to shoot a great series of portraits. She nailed it! Damn models, always giving me a hard time selecting the photos I will eventually retouch..
These photos will probably be published in the not so distant future, so I can’t show you any end results yet. Hopefully the behind-the-scenes pics are entertaining enough for now. 😉
See you next blog!
A few weeks ago I worked with some lovely people on this shoot. Stylist Liz Scarlet came to me with an awesome idea, as she often does, and before I knew it I had a fantastic model ( Michelle Elisabeth ), an amazing make-up artist (Deniece van der Molen) and a fabulous stylist over at my place, getting ready to shoot.
It was a great day out, sunny and warm, and we decided to shoot under the bridge next to my house. It has this great, gritty look that really went with the whole ‘feel’ of the shoot.
Everything went so well! We worked fast, we were on the same page, the light was exactly the way I wanted it, we got perfect shot after perfect shot…sometimes everything just works.
After the first three outfits we went back inside for a little touch up and to get the remaining outfits. And then the clouds came…
Sure, great, of course, it’s not like we were trying to create a fashion editorial with consistent light… we got frustrated. We waited. And waited.. and waited… for the sun to show his smug face again. But no such luck, the clouds were getting more and more ominous. It looked like there was a storm coming. We had to go ahead and just work with what we had. At the time I was incredibly annoyed by it, I felt like the shoot was ruined and it would never make a good consistent set of photos. But luckily, I was wrong. When I look at the pictures now, I am so excited, so happy! These are some of my best shots so far. I can’t wait to share them with you! But it will have to wait a while longer.. I hope these behind-the-scenes pics will help make you a little bit curious..
See you next blog!
After months and months of procrastination, I’ve finally done it… A whole new website!
My old portfolio was seriously outdated, so badly that I didn’t even refer people to my webstite anymore, I just sent them to my facebook page.
I started to feel seriously embarassed about it, so it was time for some action. It feels good to have my own platform again, without the need to censor my work because Facebook can’t handle female nipples. ( pic features Marianne )
From now on all of my new projects will be posted here, and if I feel like I have something to share, I will also write a blog about the shoot, my work in general, and perhaps find the time to post some nifty little tutorials, tips and tricks etcetera.
I sincerely hope you will continue to check out my rantings and photographs!