Poolside

Hello lovely blog readers!

All has been a bit dramatic here over the last couple of days. Those of you who have ‘friended’ me on facebook will know by now that I had a bit of a strange episode in the early hours of yesterday morning, walking into the bathroom and collapsing to the floor. I have no idea why this happened, really; yes I’ve been  ‘under the weather’ for a while now, with what was flu turning into just the usual symptoms associated with a cold – feeling a bit lacking in energy and tired, with a cough that seemed like it would never go away (still hasn’t). To be honest I was ignoring it a bit, just taking it a bit easier than usual in terms of accepting bookings, but my body obviously decided to have a bit of a sulk about it and treat me to my first experience of fainting.

I now have a cut, swollen lip, bruises on my chin (I basically landed on my face, I assume; my front tooth hurt a lot yesterday, though thankfully it didn’t get chipped or anything) and a touch of concussion to top it all off. The doctor took my pulse and blood pressure about seven times, frowning worryingly each time – my heart was racing, and my head was kind of lolling about while I sat in the chair. I also mentioned to her that I’d been vaguely aware of bumping my head against something more than once, as though I had been moving about on the floor (and also we found blood in two different parts of the bathroom floor), but she assured me that moving around is still consistent with a faint and not something to worry about at all (and I’m not really sure what happened anyway). I’m still feeling quite dizzy, strange and sorry for myself, but hopefully the actual faint was just a one off – though apparently it isn’t uncommon early in the morning, especially in young women, so various factors probably just came together. Still feels very bizarre and ‘out of the blue’ though.

I think I’m going to just lie down and read The English Patient for the rest of the day.

Also, the swollen-on-one-side lip has given me the opportunity to be surprised by the fact that, actually, massive lips wouldn’t particularly suit me. I’ll stick with my own please.

On a much brighter note, I’ve recently updated my Model Mayhem page and my purpleport page including one of these images taken by Jim Baab.

(The set above, with the cactus in the foreground, came out really prettily in colour too.)

Curves & Refraction

Whooooosshh!!

That’s the sound of me zooming through my emails, obviously. I am really terrible at keeping on top of them and frequently tell myself off about it (though I have been told I’m not as bad as some!), but have made a good dent this evening (got some lovely ones, too, including being asked to be interviewed for an upcoming feature) and may even carry on for a while after a quick detour to blogsville. To anyone waiting for a reply, thank you (as always) for your patience.

Today I shall be showing you some images shot by Bob in California (www.robertccochran.com – and the website comes with some incredibly relaxing music), which I think are quite special. Enjoy!

I love the steps in that last one. Bob’s asked me to suggest a title for it; I’m thinking ‘Drift’ or ‘Launch’. It has elements of both.

And thanks for your comments, both on and off the blog – it always amazes me how many people I meet who tell me they read it.

Maya, and Stupidity

As everyone probably knows, via the deluge of related facebook updates online if not by simply looking out the window, it’s snowy here in the UK. I ended up having to cancel my weekend plans to visit Cambridge and lost out on quite a bit of earnings PLUS a cancelled hotel booking (and subsequently had to cancel my Plan B of having a girly lunch here in Oxford due to a second round of snowfall this morning). BUT, I have already managed to rearrange my Cambridge trip to 9th/10th March, and managed to bag myself a photoshoot outside in the snow while I was at it, courtesy of a photographer with a landrover! Hopefully more on that in a future post, but suffice it to say, we had fun out there in the winter wonderland near my house!

Today has involved such things as German lessons with the Vati, piano practise and other such Edwardian-style pursuits, plus a dash of catching up on Take Me Out, which I think is more of a comedy than a dating show, but brilliant nevertheless. (When asked to describe herself in astronomical terms, it emerged that one girl didn’t know what a constellation was…. AND THEN HE PICKED HER! Excellent. As a person who is academically quite intelligent but life-wise extremely ‘ditzy’ (not to mention impractical) myself, I can relate to her brain collapse, if I squint a lot, and will refrain from making the observation that there definitely exists a certain type of men who seem to pick stupid women simply to make themselves feel more clever. Fair play to them.)

Taking out my bitch teeth (arguably), I have been revisiting my (younger) youth recently via a stint of teenage-self albums, via the humble minidisc (which I am prone to defending on any invitation, so I won’t let myself start on about how ridiculous it is that they didn’t catch on, when CDs scratch so easily and fall over and die after three plays, whereas minidiscs keep their chip protected by tough plastic and last pretty much forever, or about how I worked for £3 p/hr at a bakery, aged 15, to buy my flashing-light CD/minidisc player which I still use and love). The problem is, I don’t have all my favourite albums from my (younger) youth* on actual CD and therefore digitally/on my phone/iPod if I ever buy one, which is a sad state of affairs. (I buy CDs most weeks now, and have done for years, but am ashamed to say that a lot of my early music collection came from ignorance/indifference regarding the illegal download phenomenon). Nevertheless, on my £3 p/hr CD/minidisc player, I’ve just been playing Destiny’s Child for half an hour and am now girl power in human form. 

OK, I’ll shut up now and show a recent favourite photo, taken by an Australian friend/model/photographer, Jayne Hartt, while cooling off between other shoots. I love it! 🙂
*Destiny’s Child, Nelly Furtado, Usher, Mariah Carey, Christina Aguilera, The Sugababes… etc…. 
Funny story about The Sugababes actually… Due to my past illegal downloading/’sharing’ of music (which I emphasise I truly am ashamed of and would NEVER do now) I have one Sugababes album, ‘Three’, which ends with the song ‘Maya’. This is an absolutely stunning, beautiful, soul-warming track which I used to re-wind and play over and over again. It’s sung by Heidi and, being the very last track, marks a change in direction for the group from RnB to something more timeless and universal… Or so I thought… It turns out (and I discovered this only yesterday!!!) that the ‘Maya’ I was listening to at the end of the Sugababes album was not in fact sung by the Sugababes (I now wonder why I so firmly believed it was a solo by Heidi – I think I thought I’d read it somewhere! I even remember thinking that she must have trained with some eastern/Asian singing tutors especially!) but in fact by Susheela Raman, a completely different singer of southern Indian (Tamil)/UK descent. When downloading the individual tracks by the Sugababes, I obviously mistook ‘Maya’ by the Sugababes (which is apparently a song dedicated to Mutya Buena’s younger sister, who sadly passed away), for a southern indian love song. True story. And to do Susheela Raman’s ‘Maya’ credit (it really is a stunning, captivating song; Heidi truly outdid herself…) here’s the song, below, and I’ll order the (physical) album on which the original (imposter) ‘Maya’ appears, Salt Rain –  because it’s nice to know that this song isn’t just a one off on the part of the Sugababes, and that there is more of this beautiful voice to listen to!

Underwater Fires

I have so many images queuing up to be shown here as always but am interrupting that flow with some excitement caused by this morning’s inbox arrival – some underwater adventuring shot in California by Zoe Wiseman.

I loooove these. Wow!!! Thanks Zoe!

I think I may have referred to this shoot already on here, mentioning that it was a fun challenge – my first underwater shoot. Meghan Claire (who features alongside me in most; we were also joined by Carlotta Champagne and Titania) was great at pulling me down, as I have the world’s most buoyant butt, I think. The flowy hair and dreaminess of these, with the bubbles everywhere and upward reflections, and the light daggering and darting down through the water in ripples just makes these so amazing. I think my favourites are the ones in colour, and I also love the chaotic group shots at the end, with limbs and torsos all entwined at different depths and distances from the camera, with magical creatures falling beautifully in the foreground and far away mermaids swimming past alongside…. 🙂 I so want to try some more!

I’d love to hear your favourites!

Solarised

Hoping the East Coasters are doing OK. Horrible time for all concerned. Wishing you light, heat and power!!

And here are some polaroids from the wonderful woman that is Zoe Wiseman. Zoe is so brilliant to work with – utterly laid back (we’d pause after every single shot to pull out the image, dip it in the bucket… and get excited each time, so it was a very leisurely pace… and cooling off in the swimming pool became the shoot itself!) but happy to direct too, and always has the models’ best interests at heart, which doesn’t go unnoticed. Half of the roll was of me and half of the very beautiful Meghan (in last shot), who will soon feature here more I’m sure as we also spent a whole load of time shooting together again, including UNDERWATER – that was a really fun challenge for me, and hopefully the images will be very special! We will have to see how the film comes out! Oh, the suspense!

Anyway, I love these! Some are (semi?) solarised, for an extra layer of coolness. Zoe was using a Holga with a Polaroid Back (polaroid Type 85 Pos/Neg film). She solarised the images by peeling the positive away from the negative before it was fully developed and held them to the Californian sun to create the funky stuff. Clever, eh?