Snow Deer & Winter’s Wonderland

I was going to blog some shots of me taken in a desert next, but from one extreme to the other, I’ve decided instead to show some images from a much colder shoot, taken recently here in Oxfordshire. Snow galore!

I recently had to cancel my trip to Cambridge due to the snow, which was so disappointing and meant I missed out on a good wedge of work I’d carefully planned, not to mention letting down the photographers who’d been planning things with me, but what can you do… Luckily everyone was very understanding and thought it was a sensible decision (simple fact was that there would be a 99% chance I wouldn’t be able to get out of my road; can’t really argue with that, can you?!).

It’s all very well these gung-ho ‘I’m gonna make it however much snow there is! I laugh in the face of nature – nothing will stop me!’ attitudes from models and photographers on forums keen to show off their ‘dedication’, but with one very local fatality on the roads, the day I would have been driving – a girl in my year at school whose car went off the road due to the snowy conditions (I didn’t know her personally as it was a large school, but it’s such a sad story), I’m glad I made the decision to stay safe, and have luckily already managed to rearrange my trip to Cambridge for the next available weekend, 9th/10th March. It’s just one of those things that comes with the territory of living relatively out in the sticks rather than in a city, where things are probably gritted more consistently.

That said, a lovely, local-ish photographer I’ve worked with lots of times, Karen Jones (or purpleport profile here), came to my rescue at the last minute in her landrover, after I posted my last minute availability on my facebook page, driving to pick me up and shooting with me in the massive woodland that is five minutes from my house. (Those ‘sticks’ I was talking about? They have their perks!!)

We had fun trying out a few different scenes – open fields, close trees and a few things in between – going for a bit of a fashion-y/princess theme with long dresses, bodices and skirts.

(I think I need a deer to the left of the frame in the above shot, which reminds me: we saw one during the very first ‘blue’ set! I’m gonna steal Karen’s facebook snapshot of it to post at the end…)

Here’s the deer. What a cutie, poking its head up to see what was happening. It was quite far away but Karen had her camera around her neck and grabbed a quick snapshot before it sprung away out of sight.

And then, because I’m such a child, Karen let me pretend to throw snowballs at her at the end… 😉

 Dun dun derrrrrr…!

Grapes and Ferrets

…And here are some actual modelling shots again!

These were taken by Vincent Rijs in Amsterdam. I think they have a very Dutch feel to them!

I very much hope to work with Vincent again during my trip to Amsterdam in June 2013. After that hefty travel retrospective in the last blog post, it’s time to look forward. I’ve recently updated the travel/schedule page on this blog (see the tab at the top). I’ll be in Brussels in February, Scotland in May, Vienna, Prague, Berlin (and northern Germany) and Holland in June, and South Germany (Black Forest/Bavaria/Baden-Wurttemberg) and probably Zurich in July. I hope to visit Paris sometime in March or early April.

(Interlude: this is all assuming the world won’t end on the 21st. That said, anyone who’s anyone surely knows that the Mayans only predicted the end of a cycle and the start of a new one, a shift in human understanding and an apocalypse only in those ‘end of an era’ terms; and whatever repercussions will be involved are supposed to occur in the surrounding days, months or even years. 🙂 From what I’ve read (and I bought a book on the Mayans last year so that visiting the pyramids would be more fun), they never actually claimed that the world will end on that date; they are only aligning meaning with astronomical fact, as was their way of doing things. Gotta say though, the parties in Mexico at the ancient Mayan sites around now must be brilliant.)

I will also be travelling for shoots around England as well as obviously being available locally in the south/midlands, but really this depends as always on people getting in touch with me to make the bookings that kick start arrangements. 🙂 At the moment I’d like to schedule in a few more mini-trips of 1-3 days in various places around England, for early-mid 2013, and possibly with a few studio days in the mix, but I won’t know where to visit if you don’t let me know! Email me at ellarosemuse@live.co.uk and I’ll do my best to make a shoot happen!
Below is a poster for Vincent Rijs exhibition, running this month in Amsterdam.

Otters, Rocks and Water Lilies

Just in case you don’t notice, I’ve now re-jiggled my blog here to have its very own stand-alone ‘Travel Plans, Schedule & Events’ page (see the new tab at the top!). Pretty snazzy, eh? I’ll be attempting to keep it regularly updated with dates and locations, so it’s the place to glance at now and then if you ever find yourself wondering about my wanderings.

I’ve also added a widget on the right hand side which enables you lovely readers to enter your email address into the box to get immediate notifications directly to your inbox every time I update this blog with news and new images. You might find you like it. (And if not, you can unsubscribe at any time.) Do it! 🙂

*****

At the end of July I went on another two-day adventure with Perry (Imagesse) to Pembrokeshire in Wales. I annoyed myself throughout the trip by having a cold which meant I couldn’t breathe amazingly well (urgh), but apart from that it was another very enjoyable adventure! I had my own beautiful little self-catering converted barn in Lamphey, so that was a nice treat (although I vaguely remember demanding that Perry remove a spider from my bathroom shortly after arrival. I am such a girl, it’s embarrassing).

We visited various locations which Perry had thought looked interesting, and as usual there were some beautiful and striking scenes involved. Sometimes a shoot is a bit like a nature-spotting hiking trip in disguise. 🙂 With thanks to Perry (and hoping to shoot again sometime!), here are a few of the results:

With my dance wings let loose like a cape…

In a tiny old chapel set in a cliff:

Down near the water…

And in a huge lake filled with beautiful water lilies. It was quite difficult to find a spot to photograph here, as to be honest, the lake wasn’t exactly very private, but we took the risk… I love the inky hues of Perry’s mono conversions here, but will also add a couple in colour to show off the amazing vibrant blues and greens!

And of course, I promised otters. Well, aside from joggers of the picturesque-location penchantery, this location was also a hit with otter-spotters. One poor man told us all about his efforts to witness their existence, with little success, before moving on. Around three minutes later, we saw one repeatedly popping its little brown head up before swimming around to a slightly different part of the water, sending ripples and bubbles everywhere and popping up again… We were totally spoiled with otter omnipresence! So obviously Perry grabbed a quick snapshot or two (though he hadn’t got the most appropriate otter-watching lens on at the time!):

Cuuuuute! I really hope the man we spoke to saw one or two before he went home.

I love my job.

Mr Cupid

Hello! It’s been a while and I meant to post these shots (taken a few weeks ago) before I left for the land of tiny dogs, vast desert wilderness, supersized soft drinks and ‘manual stairs’ (because the ones where you have to actually use your legs are apparently remarkable rather than the norm, according to one overheard American). How lucky am I, getting to shoot with such a beautiful, ethereal looking horse as Cupid last month? Photographer Karen Jones isn’t bad either of course. 🙂 Just a quick set we did – horses aren’t the easiest mammals to control and it was all a bit of an experiment to hopefully work on more another time. Isn’t he lovely? The second is a fun outtake, where I look at him in excited dreamyment. 😉

Lioness Lightplay

This was such a fun shoot. Neil Snape‘s photography, specialising in fashion and beauty, is exquisite, and I admit I felt a bit nervous to be shooting with someone whose day job involves shooting world-renowned fashion models for world-renowned products and campaigns, but when in Paris…

Neil is so passionate and joyful about the possiblities of lighting in this mirror project, and was a delight to work with. He has since told me he is having trouble choosing final edits as they are all so special. *ego boost*!! Although a far cry from being a supermodel in height/measurements, apparently I’m alright… 😉 I’ve seen a couple more shots from this session already so far, but will post more another time, as soon as possible. Thanks Neil!

I just find this shot so stunning; the warmth and fiery glow, and the hunter pose…

Busy Bees and Alien Zebras

I’ve had a mad little day so far today, writing all morning then busy organising everything in the entire world ever (aka up and coming modelling trips to Germany, Holland, Scotland and now Dublin, since my postponed trip seems to have resurrected itself!). Flippin’ ‘eck, I feel like I spend most of my life on skyscanner.net. (In related news I am now the proud owner of a 4-wheel-drive suitcase, which means I will swivel marvellously through airports, in theory, and not get grumpy.) Off to zumba later (after a quick phone call later about another Paris visit that’s happening in June… I know, I’m just showing off now) and have also managed to get in an enquiry about a local life drawing class I’m thinking of trying out. I didn’t get to study art at school, since it clashed with music on the timetable, but I’ve always found drawing really relaxing on the rare occasion I’ve had a go. I wonder if I’d be any good at it – I really have no idea and could almost definitely be terrible, but I used to enjoy it a lot and I think it would be really fun to try. I’ve also never ever modelled for a life drawing class, only one-to-one when it comes to traditional-media artists, so it will be interesting to see what it all feels like.

Anyway, I modelled again for the brilliantly inventive Colin again recently. We had lots of fun trying out various projector themes on me. (I’ve written about his methods previously here.) I also suggested during the shoot that we try movement/motion blur, something I don’t think Colin had really worked on before, and it produced some really really cool (and surprising) effects, we thought, and required the invention of an alien zebra dance which amused me greatly. You feel off in your own world a bit when modelling for these projections; everything seems pitch black or blinding; with the heater on loudly as well, communication between photographer and model isn’t the easiest! Maybe I’ll be able to show some more movement-y ones at some point, but anyway, here are some good ‘uns to be getting on with! Thanks Colin!

Superhero Rose & talks with Aslan

You never know what you’re going to get when an email from Rayment Kirby arrives in your inbox. I’m a bit in love with these. The first one casts me as an angelic, peace-giving Superhero (well, that’s my interpretation of it anyway!), gently administering good will and benevolence to all humanity below. Ha. This should probably be on my business cards (ya know, the ones I rarely remember to actually give out). Seriously though, I love this image! Thanks Rayment.

I love the second one too – so warming to look at in our current snowy conditions! I wonder what hot havoc I’m stirring up.

And now, to cool things down again quite considerably, here is how beautiful the woodland park where I live is looking at the moment (OK, I don’t actually live in the forest, though I did see a tent there recently which made me sad… Seriously, I would HATE to be homeless at the moment. Well, ever; but particularly now). Such a perfect scene for Narnia-esque imaginations…

Finally, an irrelevant and unnecessary facial appearance from my cat, Sascha Tom, aka Mr Fluffy Bum/King Fluffalot/’my darling big boy’ (sometimes I address his highness as the latter in earshot of my not-quite-boyfriend, to freak him out for my own amusement), mostly due to his particular talent in the heft and fluff departments.

Well, I had to test out my new camera with a willing (lazy) subject, didn’t I? He has been following me around obsessively for the last few days, maintaining entire conversations with me around the subject of ‘Meeuugh’ and ‘Meeuh?’. He’s a rescue cat, and couldn’t purr for years (or perhaps he was hard to please and wanted us to earn the audible evidence of his pleasure), but now, I’m happy to say, he is an accomplished maker of the rumbling throat music. He also once tried to follow me into the bath (though changed his mind in mid-air and managed a sharp reverse). He’s cool. I love him a lot. Look at his lion face.

I’ve had so many dreams about Aslan appearing (only to stare at me, wisely; he doesn’t tend to say much, after all) in my backgarden. Those precious moments normally serve to punctuate the episodes of intense warfare where I (with bafflingly extensive abilities to be violent) have to single-handedly save the world or run and hide (usually through rivers or in caves; I think my unconcscious mind is a few centuries behind current events) from world-destroying bastards. It can go either way.