The Whys and the Wherefores…
The background story:
I grew up attending dance classes religiously and loved performing on stage. During university, I posed exclusively for a renowned painter in afternoons for over a year (a huge honour). I now have 10 years of experience posing for artists, photographers, sculptors, corset designers, fashion brands, wedding gown designers, magazine publications, and all manner of creative people in between, for exhibitions, workshops, commercial publication or for-the-fun-of-it creative portfolio building.
I have circumnavigated the globe countless times doing this surreal and wonderful job and I have worked with incredibly talented, world-class, award-winning photographers, yet many of my favourite images were shot by (near-absolute) beginners with a drive to create something special. I’ve modelled in hot, cold, opulent, rugged and bleak places, acted on blockbuster/TV film sets (from Marvel to Downton Abbey) and posed in thrown-together makeshift photo-dens in spare rooms where photographers haphazardly mislay their cameras in the sink. I truly love the variety of the people I meet, from casual hobbiests to professional artists (it makes no difference to me whatsoever). I have a lot of creativity and enthusiasm to offer and am happily still learning.
My goal is to inspire, to bring into being something that will last and which I can be proud of, and to be the catalyst for expressive and eye catching artwork. When working with me you’ll find that I’m confident enough in my strengths to deliver, while collaborating and listening to you with the aim of bringing your ideas (however vague or particular) to life.
I meet an amazingly wide range of people under the umbrella of ‘artists’ (from the poetic eccentrics to the meticulous technicians), and am grateful for the moments and memories I’ve been a part of so far. I look forward to many more!
A popular blog post (opens in new window): 10 Things You Might Not Know about Nude Models
My appearance & skills:
~ I have what is repeatedly described as a very ‘classical’/’pure’/’feminine’ appearance. My hair is naturally curly, very long (down to the bottom of my rib-cage when stretched straight), undyed and straddles various colourific boundaries(!); it is dark blonde or light-to-mid-brown depending on how you squint, and often looks fiery red in certain lights. My eyes are greeny-blue.
~ I have a somewhat (increasingly?) unusual body shape; I have a small waist and large-ish hips, which gives dramatic curves. I’ve also got rather long legs (good for when you want to do full length shots and have your model look in proportion) and a toned torso… Basically an overall ‘soft’/’romantic’/’traditional’ appearance with some muscularity and strength mixed in.
~ I am very expressive, intuitive and natural, and personally find images the most appealing and interesting to look at when they show some character and feeling (authenticity, femininity, moods, intrigue and sensuality, etc.), and I hope/think this probably shows in my work.
~ My natural empathy and dance background (I’m trained in many styles, from ballet to salsa, tap to hip hop, ballroom to bellydance and have passed exams to high levels, though it’s now just a hobby) have instilled in me an intuitive understanding of body/facial language and movement, which is enormously important in modelling.
~ I play the piano (grade 8+) and ukulele (terribly), sing, paint, love learning languages, walking in nature and generally anything creative. I am also the creator of a natural, plant-based skincare range, Leafology.
Intentions & Styles of Work
I am frequently described as having a ‘pre-Raphaelite’, classical ‘English Rose’ look and love working in historical, artistic, experimental, ‘character’ or painterly styles. However, I also enjoy versatility, from classical, dreamy and sensual styles (showing emotion, innocence, truth and glamour), to theatrical, abstract or stark (plus a good dose of ‘the strange and the beautiful’). At the other end of the spectrum, I equally enjoy working in mainstream commercial genres and am available for fashion, beauty, portrait, lingerie, boudoir, wedding, theatrical and dance/movement projects.
Through my work I aim to help create images which are beautiful, interesting, or powerful; not shocking or distasteful (and my personal integrity is more important to me than money; I never undertake sexually explicit, ‘adult’ or styles of work or anything I would consider objectifying; this includes advertising products I would not like to be associated with, such as real fur/animal products or images depicting negativity or violence without artistic merit). I prefer to be involved with artful projects which celebrate the human form in its many contexts while inspiring in a positive way. I also want to inspire those looking at images of me to create something themselves, and to know or feel something new about humanity via what I am projecting. I believe that modelling can be a spiritual and truly creative endeavour; I love the fact that I get to play an array of different roles and explore aspects of myself, womanhood, character, narratives and stories.
What it’s like to work with me… Whispers in the wind (click to read 10 years of glowing testimonials)
~ The majority of people who book me choose to do so again and again. Please click here for more of an insight:
~ My personality is calm, gentle, relaxed, a bit silly and very friendly/welcoming.
~ I consider my role a very actively creative one. I genuinely care about expression, authenticity, womanhood, identity, performance, myth, story and all sorts of other things that feed into this interesting art. People often report that shooting with me feels like good teamwork and I will contribute as much as you like. I am not a photography expert but have a good eye for a shot and can be a perfectionist about tweaking/improving my own poses when allowed to see the shots on the back of the camera – this often enables images to be taken to a higher level and photographers are often glad they let me have a peek at what they’re capturing!
– I am addicted to tea (peppermint, chai, earl grey are personal faves… never with milk!). Crucial info (and one of my proudest moments is when I saw that a photographer in Australia had written ‘EARL GREY TEA’ across the top of his shoot plan. You know you’ve made it when that happens…!).
If you’re stuck for ideas, some things I love include: natural body/portraits, bohemian fashion, themes around myth, character, simplicity, pre-Raphaelite paintings, body studies, monochrome, film, colour, decadence, the natural world, fairy/nymph-esque tree-adoration, anything to do with water, commercial happy/smiling shots, wedding, animals, dance/movement, historical themes, music, literature, fantasy, vintage, renaissance, mermaids, stark/dark moods, flowers, and dressing up. I also love very simple, telling portraits, presence, authenticity; both romantic, soft, gentle, moods & powerful, strong, womanly ones… I’ve probably missed tons of things; I have very eclectic tastes and have enjoyed a huge range of ideas in the past, from posing nude in front of the Eiffel Tower (for some moody Helmut Newton-esque work) to standing on top of a clown (while wearing pointe shoes).
I also love working with other models and have done a lot of this (my record is 15 of us at once). I’d ask that you are conscious of keeping looks/builds/moods complementary (this doesn’t necessarily mean similar) where appropriate; I can recommend many models I love working alongside if easier for you.
Please enquire for rates, which are industry standard. My business is tax-registered and I can provide invoices/receipts if necessary. I accept cash, paypal, transferwise or payment by portable card machine (please let me know in advance if you’d like me to bring this to our shoot).
Quickfire miscellany round:
I love working to music (anything from Radiohead to Rachmaninov). I do not drink alcohol or eat meat/fish/eggs/dairy (I normally bring my own lunch/snacks where appropriate, but mentioning in case helpful!). I do yoga and running. I like positivity and to talk kindly of others. I have a degree in philosophy and English. I have a terrible sense of direction. I am a massive animal lover (and a total cat lady). I get excited by rainbows, olives, art galleries, good food, the ocean and spontaneity.
Some modelling-related articles I’ve written:
–‘Modelling, Vanity and Self Awareness’
– ‘The Muse’
– Click here. (Includes a 100% improvised and unplanned bellydance solo, filmed as a last-minute favour by Mark Bigelow)
LEAFOLOGY – My self-created, natural, plant-based skincare range (available to buy online and in Oxford boutiques, soon taking over a town near you…)
Please note that this list is not comprehensive and I no longer keep track so it’s very out of date…
- Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass (2016; James Bobin): supporting artist.
- Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015; Joss Whedon): Thor’s waitress in a Valhallan dream sequence.
- The Devil’s Harvest (2015; George Mendeluk): Ballroom dancer at Stalin’s private party.
- Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (2015; Burr Steers): Dancer at the ball (where Darcy rejects Elizabeth Bennett!).
- Suffragette (2015; Sarah Gavron): Race-goer witnessing Emily Davison step in front of King George V’s horse at the Epsom Derby.
- Downton Abbey (ITV. Season 5; 2014): villager at war memorial service.
- Knifeman (Pilot. Created by the writers of Mad Men and Breaking Bad.) Featured supporting artist in opening scene. 2014
- Lewis (ITV’s Inspector Morse spin-off drama). Parade crowd.
(A longterm passion; I have trained in many of the following since the age of 3)
- Latin & Ballroom
- Bellydance (Arabian, Turkish, Egyptian, Tribal & Fusion). Member of performance troupe in Oxford. There are informal videos on my blog.
- Hip-Hop, Street, Jazz, Tap and Character – exams taken to a high/professional standard. Many university performances
- Ballet & Contemporary – exams taken to high standard. I can pose en pointe. (No longer training regularly in ballet)
- Salsa (performed for demonstrations regularly whilst at university)
- Flamenco, Bollywood, Gypsy Dance
- Garifuna – Afro-Caribbean (taught by locals in Caribbean Central America)
- Sleeping Beauty. Eclipse of the Nightjar (immersive performance & dining experience), House of the Mercurial Moon
- Snow Queen. Beira’s Whispering Wood (immersive performance & dining experience), House of the Mercurial Moon
Fashion & Advertising
- The Wool Company (ongoing)
- Clessidra – Hourglass Couture
- Oxford Conference of Corsetry: one of four chosen models for this highly-acclaimed international event.
- Wyte Phantom Corsetry
- Tighter Corsets Corsetry
- Karolina Laskowska Corsetry & Lingerie
- Alyssa Couture Corsetry
- Morua Corsetry & Couture
- Chanticleer Brides ’25th Anniversary’ Designer Wedding Dress Collection
- Five Petal Jewellery
- Moonmomma accessories
- Lady Tori Handbags
- Argos Homeware, April 2011
- Gekko Technology Lighting Systems
- Chanticleer Brides ‘Back to Nature’ 2011 collection
- CD Cover ‘Schubert Schwanengesang: Beethoven An Die Ferne Geliebte’ (James Gilchrist & Anna Tilbrook) (also featured in Sunday Times)
Exhibitions & Shows
- Bronze sculpture created by Andrew Freidin, exhibited at ‘Art in Ardington’ in Oxfordshire, May 2014
- Internationally renowned painter Robbie Wraith – I modelled for his portraits and figure studies for a year. Many acclaimed exhibitions (London & international) and various media features (ongoing)
- Duncan Miller Gallery, Los Angeles. Photography by Zoe Wiseman.
- ‘Developed in Darkness’ – joint exhibition of Cameron Attree and Mel Brackstone’s photography, Brisbane – October 2013
- ‘Elements of Nature’ – exhibition of Eamonn Farrell’s photography, Dublin – October 2013
- Loreto Art Exhibition, Australia: painting exhibition by Kristian Mumford
… and many others!
Books & Covers
- The Pre-Raphaelite Image, by Jeff Wilson, 2014 (front cover and many images featured inside)
- ‘Faerie Garden‘ (self produced – see above!)
- The Box: A typology of poses in a confined space, by Eric Kellerman (+ ongoing international press/exposure)
- Beauty, Movement and Texture, by Rayment Kirby. 2013
- Rainforest Nudes, (handmade fine art book by Dave Aharonian, 2013
- Naked in… Baja Mexico, fine art book by Cam Attree, 2013
- Fantasy Nude Photography, photographic guide by Rayment Kirby. 2014
- A Stretch of Imagination, by Rayment Kirby. 2013
- Mystery and Contrasts, fine art book by Rayment Kirby, October 2012
- Novel cover: Eine Eigene Frau, by Leena Lander
- Practical Photoshop: Creative Projects (photography book)
- Novel cover: Les larmes des innocentes, by Joachim S Valdez, France; TBA 2012
- Novel cover: Gospa Od Sedam Brezuljaka, by Jean Plaidy, Croatia; Jan 2012
- Integration, by N. Sukumar (contemporary art photography book), December 2011
- Shadows and Shapes in the Imagination, by Rayment Kirby (Fine art and ‘fantasy nude’ photography book), August 2011
- AndelusiaNudes, by John Evans and Gregory Brown (Fine Art coffee table book), Spring 2011
- Instrumental Nudes, by Gregory Brown (Fine Art coffee table book), 2010
… And many others!
Magazines & Publications
- Perfect Wedding (Feb 2014), Attire Bridal (Jan 2014) and various other features in wedding magazines/trade shows (Chanticleer Brides)
- Nuart Revue Magazine – 70-page article featuring Barend Jan de Jong, with images of me taken in a metal factory in Rotterdam. Summer 2014
- Black and White Photography’ – featured in article by Clayton Bastiani on creative technique. May 2014
- Perfect Wedding. Feb 2014
- Attire Bridal. Jan 2014
- ‘Black and White Photography Made Easy’ 2013 – multiple-page magazine feature
- Feature in Photographie Artistique (interview with Eamonn Farrell)
- Front cover of Digital Camera Magazine, August 2012
- Practical Photoshop Magazine, Feb 2012
- Practical Photoshop Magazine, December 2011
- Practical Photoshop magazine, August 2011: portrait feature
- Practical Photoshop Magazine, June 2011: front cover and feature
- Daily Mail, March 2011: Editorial
- Digital Camera Magazine, April 2011: UK & US covers & 12-page exclusive feature on fine art nude photography
- H&E Magazine, March 2011
- Cotswold Life Christmas fashion feature in association with Cotswold Care Hospice.
… And many others!
Interviews & Features
- 8-page interview feature in PH Magazine, September 2011: link here
- ’10 Things You Might Not Know about Nude Models’: link here
- ‘The Muse’, article/interview about me written by David Bollt. Model Society: link here
- ‘Modelling, Vanity and Self Awareness’ an autobiographical article and feature, published Jan 2013 on Model Mayhem: link here
Tuition & Workshops
- Don McCrae photographic & residential workshop. Studio Lavalette, France
- Dobelmen Photography workshops (Eric Kellerman and Paul vd Looi). Nijmegen, Holland
- Ross McKelvey group workshop. Belfast
- Scott Morgan and Ellie Ellis’ ‘Creative Experience’ Day
- Faye and Trevor Yerbury’s masterclasses (Boudoir Academy, Nude and Portraiture). Various, including SWPP Convention, Jan 2013
- Kevin Wilson’s wedding masterclasses (nationwide tour of the GF Smith ‘Be Inspired’ seminars)
- Frequent BIPP and SWPP tuition workshops (fashion, portraiture and bridal)
- Multiple tattoos and body art pieces have been inspired by my image
- Hair modelling for Stephen Robinson
- Mention via Rebecca Parker in ‘100 awesome flickr streams’ (http://www.pixiq.com/article/100-awesome-flickr-streams)
- Catwalk for The Ballroom, Oxford
- Fine art calendars including those by photographers Jim Furness & Mel Brackstone.
Buy the ‘Faerie Garden’ book…
I am excited to announce the fruit of several months’ coordination and three years of my happy deviation into a life of art modelling – a print book is now available for purchase, thanks to the kindness and generosity of the artists involved!
The book focuses on just one theme, ‘Faerie’, and collects 29 natural, gentle, romantic and pure shots of me, the nude, female figure in an idyllic ‘garden’ setting; in tall grass, entwined in trees, in pools of water, surrounded by flowers, in faerie queen headdresses, in pre-Raphaelite forest guises, in the cool, shady dappled light of Mediterranean gardens and against huge, jurassic plants.
You can view/purchase it here.
Each purchase includes a donation to Amnesty. Thank you.