Swords & Stares

You might not want to mess with me after seeing my ‘Judith’ side… (It’s been put into commission a couple of times recently!) Yes, even someone as serene & pacifist as me can quite enjoy wielding a sword, now and then…

Thought I’d share a few photos from a shoot in June with Ross of Posbrook Pics. I really enjoyed working with him, and how he took his time to get the results he was after. He came with a theme in mind (Judith of biblical fame; as wiki tells us: ‘She uses her charm to become an intimate friend of Holofernes, but finally beheads him allowing Israel to counter-attack the Assyrians’) and then we did a bit of extra experimentation at the end for some classical nudes.

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Captain Cook & Cockatoo feathers: Botany Bay

A recent tag on instagram reminded me of this wonderful shoot I had with Geoffrey Cutts when I was in Australia (again!) at the end of last year.

This was such an enjoyable shoot for me – definitely one of my favourites of the trip – in part because it involved quite a bit of sightseeing along the way as well as great company in the sunshine. I’d worked with Geoff on a previous trip and knew how relaxed and friendly he was, and particularly remember really enjoying the leisurely pace and opportunity to explore the area around Botany Bay National Park… and marvel at stray cockatoo feathers.

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The Grapes of Wrap (dress)

To warm us all up (I am particularly addressing my fellow northern-hemisphereans, here, and if tomorrow’s snow forecast is anything to go by we need all the help we can get), here are some images taken in the balmier, English countryside with Stuart Johnson, who was a pleasure to model for in these beautiful locations. Some of these images have already seeped into my instagram account, but it’s lovely to show a fuller collection. I felt like I was in the south of France for some of this shoot – so good to look back on now!

By the way, many of the images in this post are unedited – in fact I believe most are straight from camera. I actually think this sort of suits the carefree vibes we ended up doing.

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Rainforest Treasures

Working with Zoe is always an adventure – ‘come on’, she says, as I try and find my flip-flops and follow her out through the grounds of the enormous rainforest estate. The other thing it always is is laid back. I love this about Zoe – the shoots just unfold and you see what turns up. In this case, what turned up was an urge in Zoe to find a massive rainforest leaf or two and relieve the trees of them especially for me to hold. It’s quite an honour to touch such big leaves – they’re truly Jurassic. Another thing was a desire to erect a black backdrop in the middle of the rainforest – it was one of the most surreal ‘studios’ I’ve posed in; snakes and spiders almost certainly all around us, hiding out and wondering what on earth we were doing, whispering to each other in Strayan.

I think Zoe’s photography is beautiful – it seems to focus on the strength and power of women and her subjects often look like superheros you wouldn’t want to mess with (not to say she doesn’t capture the softness too), and through her (mostly) yearly retreats which have been running since 2002 all over the globe, bringing wonderful people together, she’s created quite a phenomenon. I have loved attending the last several years and made some really good friends. Long live inter-border art-making in cool environments! 🙂

The first few are with Carlotta, Elilith, Anne, Brooke, Tara, Cheyanne, Titania and Jessamyn (who are all brilliant women, from various continents, who I love hanging out with).

In some of the below, my hair is wet from posing under the indoor waterfall, as one does.

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(that’s me with my leg in the air!)z-ella126

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My local studio…

I’ve had the pleasure of a few shoots recently with the wonderful Stuart Thomson in my local, Oxfordshire studio recently. I can’t recommend Stuart enough – he is such a laid back, easy going, friendly person and has been an enormous help to me in providing the product photos for my skincare range, Leafology, which launched in July. I suppose I pride myself on being a one-woman band as far as that goes, creating the recipes myself and making them personally, by hand, in small batches in my home studio, designing the labels myself – everything (it’s quite a bit to juggle along with everything else I do, but enormous fun!)… but when it came to the clean, white product photos I wanted on the main gallery pages of the range, it didn’t take long before I realised my shadowy, awful attempts weren’t going to cut it. Cue Stuart, who easily arranged a light set up so intricate I felt quite envious of the products – not sure I ever really have that many lights on me. Anyway, this is all a big pre-amble, but when I’m in the studio for that, Stuart and I have tiny mini-shoots now and then, and I’m delighted with some of the results. Here are my favourites:

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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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(Image by Steve Doman)

This feels a bit naughty somehow, but I’m just going to copy and paste a travel notice I’ve just published on a portfolio site. It’s all a bit exciting really – I haven’t posted any local availability for ages. Hope to hear from anyone interested! You can contact me directly via ellarosemuse@live.co.uk if any of the below info piques your interest… Continue reading