Poldark Heights

I managed to time a shoot with the wonderful Jeremy Howitt around the latest shoot with The Wool Company, down in Cornwall – beautiful beautiful part of England.  Always love these visits! This time Jeremy and I were joined by a stylist (very unusual for us; normally our shoots are a case of Jeremy making me come over all monochrome [our Paris shots perhaps being the ones I think we are most known for], sleek and stylish while I suggest bright and patterned hippie dresses, mostly politely ignored; though we did go to Fuerteventura a couple of weeks ago, and a couple of dresses I bought in Indonesia made a star performance amongst some beautiful nudes on its beaches; images soon!). Anyway, Lady C came with a car full of vintage dresses, all brimming with character and delicate design. I fell a bit in love with this lilac number, in particular; I feel Poldark himself may have approved. (I tell myself; and even if we were using his Wheal Coates tin mine as a mere backdrop.)

Sometimes drizzly, dreary weather gives a moody flounce or two a bit of atmosphere.

Merry, Merry Christmas one and all! 🙂

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Of Castles & Gold

From one long-standing shooting tradition to another, how lucky I am to have worked again recently with Jeremy Howitt on another little adventure – this time in the north of England, around Northumberland!

It was the usual (finely) organised chaos of early starts and day-time cat-naps, so that I lost track of what day was what, where I’d been, who I was… etc… by the end of the fleeting trip, but we had such a lovely time! I love the results – dramatic beach scenes with castles and vistas as the sun winds up or down – and we even managed to squeeze in a trip to Alnwick Castle to see where some of the scenes in Downton Abbey (and Harry Potter) were filmed (and by the way, I hope you’re all glued to your screens this season in case I make a fleeting appearance in a couple of scenes; I’m going to miss it while I’m away and am making my Mum record it all for me!); and for me to be utterly beaten by the world’s biggest ice cream, which covered me in delicious chocolate and had me rooting around for tissues to clean up me/my clothes/the bench. I was such an embarrassment; clearly out of ice-cream-eating practise (I don’t normally ‘do’ ice creams, but had a sudden craving. It was all very ungraceful.).

Anyway, I’m off to Indonesia for a month now, so things here may get a little slow, but will be back and raring to go in mid-November and am (by the way) taking bookings now for November, December and January; and from April onwards. Things are getting all a bit inter-continental again, and I like it! 🙂 I will be snapping away while away on this trip, I’m sure, so my instagram will floweth over in all likelihood, since I am clearly addicted to it these days. (and oh, I am going to miss Sir Fluffalot terribly while I’m away; I hope I survive without his enormous fluffy face looking alarmed at me. I know, I’m ridiculous, but LOOK AT HIS MAGNIFICENT FACE!!!)

OK, those mermaid scenes and so forth, forthwith (thank you so much again Jeremy!):

You can also read Jeremy’s version of events here. (I’m so glad he posts these threads, not least so I can remember where exactly I’ve been. He knows me well enough to know how terrible I am at knowing my way around places (and knowing whether to turn left or right out of a hotel, despite having been there for three days, for example), so it will come as no surprise that the place names became a slight blur after the early morning starts, even if the places themselves are spectactular; it really is a miracle that I can travel solo as well as I do. Nevermind. If I was the sort of person who would end a blog post with a hashtag, it would be #cantbegoodateverything (but I wouldn’t do that, because then where does the full stop at the end of the blog post go?) – I’ll put it here: .

A story full of sea

Having spent this morning unpacking from yesterday’s trip and re-packing for tomorrow’s, and while listening to Eska’s debut album (she fits somewhere between Joni Mitchell and Laura Mvula, I think; though those elements are disparate and she very much does her own, unique thing!), I thought I’d show some photos I’ve just received. In April, I was able to fit in a shoot with Perry (Imagesse), who I’ve worked with many, many times now, while in Cornwall primarily for another shoot for The Wool Company. We always end up in some very beautiful places (often beaches!) and I love his storytelling imagination which whirs while I pose. In fact, these images were delivered to my inbox yesterday with a long story written to accompany them! In between the images below, there are some snippets of his words and phrases…

‘…When I was walking a quiet section of the coast path on the rugged wreckers coast…Somehow I had stumbled on a secret cove…


‘I made my way down a set of steep steps I found myself absolutely alone in that pure new world...’



‘…The rhythmic mantra of the ocean…’



‘…I made my way, to the glowing brightness which led me out of the cave…’



‘…I discerned something else…’ 


‘…something smooth and curvaceous…’ 


‘…moving through the cove…’


‘…My mind started to work overtime…’ 


‘…if she had not come from the land…’ 


‘…she must have come from the sea…’



‘…she remained in my vision…’


‘…then she turned and walked purposely towards the sea…’

Pedal boats & Bikinis

Evening!

I’m back from a gorgeous ‘sunshine shoot’ in Portugal – lots of images to show soon, I hope, and in the meantime, the results of some more local (south coast of England) beach frolics, courtesy of a last minute road trip with the excellent Gary Sandy, and the fine Great British weather. Gary’s so much fun to work with – I’m sure I’ll be shooting with him a third time at some point.
These were great additions to my ‘Bright’ gallery on my new website.

I must be a mermaid

‘I must be a mermaid. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living’. 
– Anais Nin

I was so glad I’d decided to pack my raqs sharqi costume (which I generally call my ‘mermaid’ outfit) for my trip to Norway. I can’t imagine a better scene in which to show it off than at this rocky coast in moody weather; the colours worked so beautifully. I wrote a bit about Norway on my last blog post so I won’t repeat myself here – but here’s a little update on some edits I’ve kindly received!

By Hakon Gronning:

By John Erik Setsaas:

🙂

The Far Flinging Ocean

Zoe Wiseman still holds the award for the world’s most laid back, no pressure shoots.

We walk (a few metres) to the beach. We consider the wind. We sit down. We consider the waves. We stand up. We consider the rocks. We scramble gently over them, dodging the puddles of water growing fast from the flinging sea. I perch; she crouches, wedged between jagged rock. We shoot a few frames of film. We stand up and look around a bit more. We move a bit further…. The Australian waves were really crashing in – it wasn’t a long shoot.

Zoe’s such a pleasure to meet every year.

These few had the benefit of the amazingly-faced Sara Liz, a US playboy model who is really friendly and funny:

Amphitrite

want to say a huge enormous thank you to Australia for having me. Your sharks didn’t get me, your spiders didn’t crawl on me and your bears didn’t drop on me… And on my last day, I frolicked in the bush with kangaroos in the background. Happy! Big thanks especially to the friends, lift-givers, event-makers, airport picker-uppers and all staff at the various branches of the 5* Model Hotel chain: Cam AttreeMel BrackstoneZoe WisemanMalcolm GrantDzhaminat GrantMichael Marlborough, Jacy, Wick, Mo & Eggbert, Anne Duffy and Glen. You are all thoroughly excellent humans (etc) and made my trip a massive pleasure! Thank you!

I am so, so happy to be home now, even though I didn’t want to leave Australia. There are so many things here that I am looking forward to catching up with and getting stuck into. I woke up last night, having arrived in the UK early yesterday morning and (predictably) couldn’t sleep because I was so excited (and jet lagged, and bizarrely craving weetabix). It’s such a weird feeling, time travelling, and waking up in my own bed after two months away, feeling for a second or two that perhaps the whole trip was just a very good dream!

Anyway, as if I enjoy sitting endlessly on my bum in various guises of transport, this evening I’m getting a train to deepest darkest Somerset for a very exciting shoot for an extremely talented wedding dress designer. The new collection will be shot with such a beautiful theme, and although getting married is absolutely no way near my radar, I see nothing wrong with prancing around like a princess in various manifestations of lace, silk, beads and sparkles for the day.

Finally, I thought I’d show you some images by Peter Cassar, taken on a beach in Geelong, Australia. First, the set up (a shot on my phone; what a lovely, lonely, lost looking chair!):



Later, I’m really not sure what would have looked more strange to the woman strolling past along the beach, me sitting nude on a wooden chair on the sand, or Peter using a house-hold broom to meticulously smooth out the sand around me. He didn’t quite succeed in sweeping up the whole beach, but we did make these images, the first of which is called ‘Amphitrite’:



The chair angled itself so perfectly before crashing violently into the waves (I’m going to take credit for a good throw; no trickery required… :-))