Jonny is also a photographer who is also an artist. Rather than just click away while the model just sits and looks pretty, he has his ideas well thought out and goes for it with gusto. Shooting at a hotel was his idea, in which he initially suggested a vintage lingerie theme. To be honest, I have very little of such outfits so panicked as I started improvising with stuff I
already have, ie. polka dots, lace, corsets... Then during our chats, he changed it to the "stockings and suspenders slut" image. Well that made life easier! The shooting date was set for 15 May 2011. I couldn't wait!
Jonny picked me up at the tram stop at Nottingham Station. What started as a warm sunny start in London turned out to be a cold cloudy day in the Midlands. I should've known! We reached the hotel by the tram, where we were greeted by hospitable staff . The rooms werea tad smaller than as seen on the website but still adequate enough to shoot Plus, at least the decor was quite pleasant and good enough to use as backdrop with the beds beautifully made.
Jonny brought with him an air pistol (known as a BB gun in the U.S.)
which we thought we'd use as a prop. I would be a femme fatale brandishing the gun wearing nothing but suspenders and stockings looking menancing. Actually, that started reminding me of that controversial French film, "Baise Moi", a Thelma and Louise type film but more violent and sexually explicit. I had so much fun pretending to be one of the girls but a lot nicer of course!
I certainly admire Jonny's spontaneity. During getting changed to the next set, Jonny had this brilliant idea ofme getting behind the sheer net curtain in nude and sticking my body out as much as possible to reveal the curves. After a few play with the lights and my posing, we nailed one good one which we are proud of.
We then proceeded to the next set which I named The Final Seduction. I got changed into a beautiful black corset by Nikita Sablier, also run by a friend who is also a model. The session involved a POV (point of view) shoot where I was supposed to be seducing the photographer as he holds the camera in front of him. There, he used a fish-eye lens to give it a more voyeuristic feel. First, Jonny held the gun to my head and snapped away. It was a sharp contrast to the last set where I was now to look afraid and paralyzed with utmost fear.
This is the part of the job I enjoy most. I love exploring different expressions through the various scenarios. After having the gun in my head, I was then to try and wrangle out of the situation by seducing the attacker so it was jumping from fearful to fearless. From vulnerable to being in control. In fact, the entire set turned out so well, as what helped was Jonny being so easy going and non-threatening with me not feeling a least bit uncomfortable as I would have done had it been another photographer
We were just about to call it a day until Jonny asked me if there was anything else I'd
like to shoot. Well I've come all the way from London to Nottingham on a 2-hour train journey with a night over there so I was certainly determined to make it worth the while! I mentioned a stunning picture of Dita von Tesse in one of her sleazy motel shoots where she is standing on a bedside table in her underwear along with her stockings. So I pulled out a pair of
polka-dotted B&W lingerie and black holdups. Finding the lighting on the bedside table unsuitable, we chose a nearby table. Luckily it had a wall mirror behind it so plenty to improvise with!
It was good I suggested continuing earlier on. As ideas developed, Jonny suggested doing some lying on the bed shots firstly in my outfit which eventually led to shooting nudes later. It was interesting how we managed to capture various moods. Some were dreamy, some edgy, others "come hither". It's wonderful to work with someone that appreciates versatility rather than making images look all somewhat same and stuck in a rut. The post-production was just as impressive. Most were B&W but with the coloured ones, he cleverly manipulated the tones to make them look quite 1970s retro as the nude picture below illustrates.
After the shoot was over and I dressed to warmer clothes, Jonny walked me up to the shops where I could buy some food. We gave each other big hugs and look forward to seeing each other again at another group shoot next month in Nottingham organised by another photographer, James Rose. Mind you, I was so exhausted after this successful and fun shoot, I stayed in the hotel snuggled up watching a string of CSI series. Thanks Jonny for this wonderful day, can't wait to work with you again next month!
For more captivating images from this shoot, please click onto my Flickr page!