This post is slightly belated, I must admit, but I thought it best to write something about my past year!
I feel like I haven’t really shot much in 2011, but actually that isn’t true, I’ve just shot less self portraits. In fact, I think I’ve only shot about 5 sets of self portraits, which is pretty crazy considering how many I used to take. It isn’t that I’m running out of ideas but that I’m busy with other projects and the joy of actually being paid to take photographs - something that I didn’t think would happen earlier this year.
When I first started being ‘serious’ about photography about 5 or 6 years ago, I used to take self portraits because I knew exactly what I wanted to do, and I didn’t have to worry about anyone else. I was also terrified of letting down models because I wasn’t good enough. I seem to have gotten over that fear, not because I think I am skilled, but because I refuse to pander to divas. If a model acts off with me, I’ll probably tell them to get out my studio.
This has been the year when I have shot the most photographs of other people. Most of them, I would say are incredibly nice and talented people. I’ve shot one of my favourite performers Missy Macabre, the utterly stunning Jess Abidde, delightful burlesque performer Miss Betsy Rose, Italian model Shivabel, American artist Vera Icon, uniquely gorgeous Helene Atsuko, ridiculously photogenic Nina Kate, the super sexy frenchie Mam’zelle Maz, another of my favourite performers Leah Debrincat, beautiful Amanda (who I’ve shot before, amazed at her chameleon skills), ethereally perfect Miranda Barrie, and last but not least gorgeous red-head Sophia St. Villier! Most of those people I probably gazed at longingly years ago!
One highlight of my year was collaborating with Amelia Arsenic for her A is fo Arsenic: Crime and Punishment range, which are still for sale here. We actually shot the original images in November 2010, but they weren't released until this year. You can view the original images and the lookbook photos here. As if that weren't amazing enough, one of the images was featured on a Torture Garden flyer!
Modelling has taken a little bit of a back seat this year, although I have so many ideas and outfits, I rarely find people that I can work with who understand my vision! Unfortunately most of those that I do enjoy working with live far away! This year, however, my partner Markabre Charade has picked up the camera and been using me as his muse somewhat. Not only has he created some beautiful films, including the Monarch (a beautiful experimental film seen below), he is also a talented photographer!
A collection of some of the shots in which I modelled (photographers: Ravenblakh, Yukidoll, Neil Dawson, Maria S. Varela, Markabre).
One of my favourite shots this year is this one by Yukidoll photography. I had created this outfit from scratch in homage to Galliano's Frozen Ukrainian Brides and had been looking for someone to shoot it in a very specific way. Although this was shot in 5 minutes in a hallway before a mad rush to catch a train, it is still exactly what I was looking for.
In 2011 I've been treated to two Opera outings (Die Zauberflote at The Royal Opera House and Terry Gilliam's The Damnation of Faust at ENO), a Derren Brown show and went to see a fair few of my favourite bands including Katzenjammer (twice), Balkan Beat Box, George Clinton, The Tiger Lillies, Shantel and various musical marvels at Bestival.
However, there was one big change in my life that made 2011 fantastic - starting work at Playful Promises! The 4 most recent shoots above were for PP, and I have also recently shot the AW13 lookbook, which we will be teasing you with soon. We already have some exciting ideas for 2012, as of course there is no rest for the wicked with Valentine's Day coming up!
I don't really have any resolution apart from to update this thing a little more, and get the ball rolling with The Roustabouts (our new DJ duo team), of which there may be some exciting news very soon! I hope you all had a great 2011, and if you didn't, that 2012 will be better for you :)