Balancing Act

I’ve just finished packing for my third shoot with a photographer who’s working with me this time in my nearby ancient woodland tomorrow morning, just for an hour. Having amused myself with the curation of some very fanciful outfits (I love it when I’m given free rein with styling, even if there are only so many sets you can get through in such a quick session!), I thought I’d update with some images sent to me which were taken in Vienna.

(I need to get myself back to Vienna again soon – SO much to see and do there!)

As you can imagine, some of these were a bit challenging, but challenges are fun, are they not? ūüôā

(Organisation and set design by Roland Pum)

By Peter Eibler:

By Manfred Klejna:

More by Peter Eibler:

Hope you are all having wonderfully balanced weeks.

Fruit, Fog & Romantic Pleasure…

Until quite recently I’d never posed alongside a male model except for during fully-clothed commercial/wedding work. The idea of doing nudes had vaguely interested me on and off, but I was intrigued by the possibility of doing so without creating a body of work which is overly sexual or, well, porny. Having looked around for inspiration in the world of photography I found surprisingly little that inspired me – there’s a lot of modern erotica, some of which is beautifully done, but very little which is more classical, like the kind of thing you’d see in the work of certain painters or sculptors (obviously there is also plenty of explicit erotica in any medium, old or new, but I was looking for something else). I began to see it as a challenge…

I wanted to see if I could create something sensual, loving and intimate without being too erotic; depicting pure love and romantic pleasure, desire and playfulness… all while still keeping a mood of innocence. And yes, the line is so fine in part because it is so vague and perhaps dissolves completely on too much consideration.

Having been in touch for a while with¬†Joel Hicks¬†(who currently stars in the brilliant¬†Harpic ad¬†on TV, amongst many other things), we decided to see if we could find a photographer who might be interested in shooting us together. I asked¬†ManCave, who I’d shot with twice before, if he was interested; and he was, so we made a plan. I waffled looong involved theories (about love versus lust, etc. etc.) at them both, and I couldn’t be happier with the results! ManCave planned these classical sets and arranged everything beautifully, and Joel was absolutely perfect in both looks and professionalism. His facebook page is¬†here, and is well worth a ‘like’ in my humble opinion; he’s inspiring both within and without his modelling work, and competent male models are massively under-hired in the freelance world.

Anyway, to the images….

Quick plug: We think we worked quite well together and make quite a good combination, so just in case anyone is interested in booking us as a duo this summer, possibly in a beautiful outdoor location (Joel happens to live on a 13 acre plot in the Midlands, which incorporates a fully-equipped studio as well as the lake, ponds, stables and wood), please let me know. I’ll be available to model there alone or along with Joel, for commercial/wedding images, classical or a mix. The opportunities there mean some really amazing images could be made, and as a photographer himself, Joel is also able to mentor any beginners.

Thanks for looking!

Electric blue, rain, shapes; workshop & London exhibition

In stark contrast to the blog post below, I will leave it completely to you to imagine how this image was created. It’s a weird, freaky one – I love it!

(Taken by the ever-eccentric-in-a-good-way Eric Kellerman at a Dobbelmen workshop he and his colleague hosted, during my visit to the Netherlands last month. It was really fun to see what weird and wonderful shapes and patterns we could create!)
I had a really blissful time shooting in France recently (images on their way..!) and was picked up by a taxi, once back in London, to rush to the evening private view for a painter’s exhibition I am currently featured in. I felt very jet set and glam (in my rain-sodden hippie dress and wet feet…. Upon arriving in London, a man even took it upon himself to mention to me that my long dress was going to get wet at the bottom(!). Ha.) Anyway, it was fun to spot 4 new drawings of myself I’d never seen before (I’m rarely allowed to view the results in situ…) and I was struck, as always, by the immense talent and vision of the artist across the whole exhibition. It’s lovely (and unsurprising) to see that at least one piece I modelled for had sold already.
Right, over and out – just a quick update. Gallons and gallons of images to come very soon; I’m herding them up gratefully to show on here from the incredibly generous and creative types who have pointed their lenses at me in recent weeks…
Actually, in other, tentative, should-I-mention-this news, I’m working towards a poetry collection on the subject of appearance/reality/identity/performance. Same old preoccupation… But I’m gathering a significant section of thought on the concept of ‘muse-dom’. It’s a lot of fun. I would publish things here but then that would mess up copyright/permissions, etc etc. (That’s the annoying part.)

Birthdays: Soft Dances in a Room of Grey

Here are some images taken recently by the wonderful Mark Bigelow in an Oxford studio of me modelling alongside mature model (a ridiculous term, but there we have it) Alex B. Alex and I had mutually admired each other’s blogs (hers is here) and outlook for a while. I find her very inspiring. It’s nice to model alongside someone with such character. She is incredibly elegant, with trademark long, silver hair, yet absolutely down to earth and sweet, and I really hope I will be as creative, open-minded, pioneering and graceful at her age and beyond.

There will be more images emerging in the future, probably. The first is one we did quickly before Alex arrived, and Mark has called it ‘Soft Dances in a Room of Grey’:

Norwegian Black – On an Island

Memories of this trip include lighthouses, rocks, funny Norwegian pancakes, beaches, sculptures, sub-sea tunnels and outdoor cats. We had a very productive four days, and so I will endeavour to divide the results into more than one blog post. I love so many. This selection, the ‘indoor’ side of things, was mostly taken while listening to Alicia Keys and Mark Knopfler’s brilliant Privateering.

A huge thank you to the multi-talented Sjur Roald, whose hospitality, too, was fantastic.

Elephants

It was a pleasure to model again recently for Rayment Kirby, photography-improviser-extraordinaire (I was particularly impressed by the papier mache light, this time – Rayment is incredibly ingenious when it comes to creating equipment with which to work and produce various effects). We were working towards his latest book and created a good range of images, as shown below, with the aid of bohemian cushions, black fabric, jewellery, plastic sheeting, red rugs and rainy windows…

Life has been busy and hectic as always for me recently, with a bizarre emphasis on turning nocturnal over this last week or so, and some fun shoots in the early mornings, parties and exciting emails I don’t want to ‘jinx’ by mentioning. I’ve managed to be productive too, booking flights, visas, travel insurance, updating my website, repairing my car (well, not me personally; that would be disastrous) and generally catching up on all those mundane things which keep a world spinning. Off to Norway very soon! Will update again soon after that…