Now, I never allow togs with whom I work for the first time visit our home and have me stripped naked. However, I gave Steve an exception. His work on Model Mayhem and his own site reflected outstanding quality and taking it all seriously. More importantly, all his models looked relaxed and at ease so I knew I'd be comfortable to work with him. Also, I did what most sensible people would do and called him. He was very pleasant and polite, very professional in his approach, and I was looking forward to shooting with him and was most honoured he even invited me as part of his project! The date was set for 15 January 2011.
Steve arrived safely at our place in Horsham. With minimal make-up and just tidying up my hair with curling tongs, I was relieved to know that as outfits were not required for this shoot, I had less to worry about! I was advised prior to the shoot not to wear any underwear (especially bra) as they leave marks on the skin so I was in my bathrobe answering the door and chatting to him in the lounge which made me feel so informal yet relaxed from the beginning. After showing Steve around the house to keep in mind where to shoot, we went to the kitchen to start the session. Stripped down, I prepared ourselves some coffee and he began clicking away...
Throughout the shoot, Steve would be chatting to me and asking me questions so he would have an idea as to how to describe me in his website. We had a lot of fun talking about life in Europe, his work, why I have an American accent and how things are in Japan which he took great interest in. And of course about photography and modelling... In the kitchen, I was seated by the "Stressless" chairs just relaxing away sipping my coffee while he captured every moment. The best ones were of me just looking out the window. Then there were images of me sitting on the work surface cross-legged and smiling. Very hippy chic! And some really sultry shots of me opening the fridge and squatting down to reach for things l
ike bananas, strawberries, even a can of beer!
Then we thought we'd change the scenery and go to the guest bedroom. During the late morning, the light is best there. But before that, we did a few images on the staircase and landing, where I would be gripping the bars on the banisters and making a scary face before composing myself and going back to the cute happy face. There were a few Hello Kitty soft toys scattered around the bed, and I thought to myself, being Japanese, I so had to get a shoot holding a Hello Kitty! I was pleased to notice that Steve had actually included one of them on his site!
Back downstairs, we did our final set in the lounge. Plenty of room to go crazy! First I sat on the sofa and be reading magazines. Then Steve passed me a packet of Malteasers which I was supposed to be shot putting in my mouth and munching. Then I sat on the floor and looked as if I'm supposed to be reaching for his camera. He changed the lens to a wide-angle one (correct me Steve if this is wrong) so that my body would look smaller and head and hands bigger to make a rather cute "anime" effect. At one point, when I told him I do Yoga so he got me to do a pose which would show me at my most flexible. The Halasana or Plough position! Finally, I was to stand in front of the wall making funny shapes with my body but rather than smiling this time, I thought I'd make an "art nude" face, ie. looking serene.
I thoroughly enjoyed my shoot with Steve. He really put me at ease from the beginning as he is friendly, genuine and enjoys his work. His exhibition is not planned till at least 2012 as he has just started his project, but I hope he won't forget to include my images! Well, at least for now, I'm featured in his website as Naked@Yours. Apparently he is also looking for other models to shoot, male or female, couples or single, young or old... so hit him up if you're interested. I recommend him! Thank you Steve for this fun shoot. I look forward to receiving the rest of the images!
Steve's work can be found on: http://www.stevehaywardphotography.com/nakedatyours.html