Saturday, 20 November 2010

Accessorize, Accessorize

I popped down to Reading last weekend, for a shoot with Lee Brown. I'd already seen and admired his work, and had some ideas to try out that I hoped would work with his style of photography. I took a large bag of accessories, and we gradually sifted our way through lots of the (somewhat eccentric) items I'd brought with me. I also experimented more with my make-up, and there are actually three different hairstyles and differences in make-up in these sets, if you look closely. I had a great time throwing on all my jewellery and (fake) fur for this shoot, I just love accessorizing! I often say 'I feel naked without my jewellery,' well in this case, I suppose I am technically naked with my jewellery!

All images by and copyright of Lee Brown.

Monday, 15 November 2010

Hallam Mill

Last week I was fortunate to pick up a last minute shoot with David Atkinson, at Hallam Mill Studios in Stockport. I'd communicated with David in the past, as I admire his work and hoped to shoot together, but he had already planned and booked shoots until the end of the year. When David had a cancellation at the last minute (literally), I was lucky to be sitting in front of my computer at the time and I read his casting for a replacement model. It worked out well in the end, as I was keen to shoot together, and had wanted to visit Hallam Mill Studios, which I had heard plenty about. (One of my favourite art nude photos was taken there).
The following morning I hopped on a train to Stockport and we had a really great day working together in this fantastic location. We alternated between natural light (whenever the sun was shining in through the windows) and studio light (when it wasn't), and shot lots of sets using various areas and props throughout the venue. Hallam Mill Studios will definitely be going on to my list of recommended studios, as I was very impressed by the amount of space and facilities there.
David was a real pleasure to work with, and I am very pleased with these photos from our day together. It saddens me that so many models cancel at the last minute (it gives us all a bad name), but on the other hand, since I am often available at short notice (I tend not to book my time too far in advance), their loss is often my gain!

Images by and copyright of David Atkinson.

A short note

This is just a short note to say that I set this blog up to find like-minded artists, who can appreciate the beauty of the human form. Please don't confuse the fact that I often express myself through the medium of art nude, with exhibitionism. There are plenty of websites on the internet for those who simply want to display their own genitals.

I have a stat-counter on this blog, so I know how my watchers find my work. It saddens me slightly to discover that I am linked via several websites that I would consider to be less than tasteful. I am aware that I can't dictate how and where my work is associated. I'm also aware that I can't influence how it is perceived in the mind of the viewer, and I can't define for you what is 'good taste.' However, I can assure you that my intention has always been to create art, not to provide sexual stimulation.

I have no wish to be associated with websites or material that is solely intended to titillate. Even my work that I myself have defined as 'erotic' is intended to stimulate the mind. There is a difference between 'intellectual erotica,' and pornography which leaves nothing to the imagination (this is intended to stimulate other parts of the anatomy).

Inevitably, there will always be those who associate nudity with sex. Partly this is because we live in a society that only ever depicts nudity in a sexual context. The internet is an open forum, and I can't decide who is worthy of viewing my work, and who isn't. I have no control over what you think when you look at images of me naked. I can tell you what my intention was when I created those images, but I can't force you to agree with me.

I can however control certain aspects of the appearance of this blog, and who is openly associated with it. I can and will block anyone who follows me and is clearly only seeking sexual gratification from these images. It's surprisingly easy to tell. If your avatar is nothing more than an image of your (or someone else's) genitals, don't expect to be featured in my list of followers for very long. Accumulating large numbers of followers does not motivate me. Creating tasteful artwork does.

There. Rant over.

Many thanks to those of you who follow me for the right reasons, and share my view on these points. Apologies to those who are reading this, to whom the rant does not apply. (The irony being, that those who should be reading it, have already scrolled past these words to the nude photos).


Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Water Baby

I was contacted by a photographer a while ago, who wanted to do some underwater photography in his pool. He wanted to create abstract shapes for potential use on fabrics. (Incidentally, this particular photographer found me via my blog, and more specifically, as a result of my feature with artnudes. It's lovely to know that my blog has the desired effect, and I'm very grateful to artnudes for the exposure).

I'd never done anything like this before, and although I'm quite comfortable in and under water, I had no idea if I would be able to look comfortable under water, or manage my facial expression so that I didn't look like I was dying! I've seen some really beautiful underwater photography, where the models all look like they're perfectly at home, sitting around having tea, and not struggling against the instinct to swim up to the surface and breathe. The beautiful Ivory Flame has some wonderful examples of this type of photography which I've always admired, but I had no idea if I would be able to manage it myself.

One of the most difficult challenges of this shoot (apart from fighting instinct) was that the pool we used wasn't very big. Normally, when swimming under water, I would propel myself under while holding my breath. But the pool wasn't really large enough to use force to get beneath the surface, and the only way to submerge without disturbing the surface too much, was to expel air from the lungs first, and then just sink to the bottom. I confess I did find this counter-intuitive, as I naturally wanted to take large gulps of air before going under. I don't really like the sensation of water up my nose either, and with no air left to expel from the lungs, there's really no way to avoid this. After several hours of water up the nose, it becomes a little disorientating, and I hardly knew whether I was upside down or the right way up!

However, all of those challenges aside, I did really enjoy this shoot. I got the hang of going under water without gulping air first, eventually. It was something completely out of the ordinary for me, and the company was very enjoyable (and so was the lunch). Swimming is one of few forms of exercise I actually enjoy, and it's always nice to have the opportunity to have a splash about (particularly without any clothes on!). I loved the idea of creating abstract images from the body under water, and although it's harder to maintain any sort of control over the final results under these conditions, I do love the outcome.

Many of these images remind me of artworks - abstract, otherworldly and ethereal. Some were taken under water using an underwater camera, and others were taken from above the surface with me submerged. The final results contain all sorts of surprising imagery, including Picasso-esque distortion of the features and limbs, crucifix-like symbols, and all sorts of mythical creatures which appear to lurk out of the depths of nowhere. I only look a little bit like I'm dying in some of them, so I think the objective was achieved and we created some fascinating images!

Images by and copyright of David Waldron

Monday, 8 November 2010

Woodland Wanderings

These photos are from my second shoot with Stuart Bentley in the woods near Watford, in Hertfordshire. I love being outdoors with all the sights, sounds and scents that nature provides, and I have to confess that the opportunity to prance about naked in nice weather outdoors appeals to the naturist in me!
This was such a lovely day, and despite the woods being quite busy, we managed to find a few glades and quiet spots that were not overlooked by passers by, and we had a productive shoot.

Photos by and copyright of Stuart Bentley

Local Locations - Catching Up

Well folks, it has been a while since I blogged. Apologies for the delay - I have all sorts of updates, but somehow I seem to have fallen behind on communications in general at the moment, and it takes a lot of effort to get my act in gear again.

I was also immensely proud of the last few updates on this blog, and I really liked the way the front page looked with those particular images on it. I got so attached to those blog entries, that it seemed a shame to mess with it, so I left it that way for a while. However, that really isn't a terribly productive way to keep folks updated with my latest work, so I will endeavour to catch up again over the next few days!

I have been very busy, working every weekend (either modelling or singing) and have done a lot of travelling over the last few weeks. I've mostly been working seven days a week, often away from home or without internet access, so my apologies to those who were/are expecting a reply from me. I am very good at keeping up with arrangements once a booking is made. I am less good at keeping up with email tennis. I have emails directly, and emails via several websites - many of which it is necessary to be signed in to read and reply to emails. For this reason, when I'm working away from home, I struggle to keep up with everything via my Android phone, with a screen of about 3 inches across. Typing on a phone keyboard is more time consuming, and you can't have more than one browser window open at a time for cross-referencing. My usual system of setting time aside each week to catch up hasn't been working lately (because I haven't got the time to set aside), so anyway. Blah. Excuses over. Sorry about that.

These photos are from a shoot I did on one of the few sunny days over the summer, in two superb locations about 5 miles away from my home. One is a stately home, and the other is an abandoned farm house, just around the corner. Both locations are stunning to shoot in, and were introduced to me by Mick (MGF Photographics), who is local to the area and a real pleasure to work with.

I am so privileged to have such wonderful locations so close to home, and I hope to shoot in them again in future (and if not shoot there, they would also make a wonderful place to have a picnic, or just a wander!).

Many thanks to Mick, who was kind enough to send me a CD with all the images from this shoot. Here are a few selected images, most of which I've converted to black and white/sepia, because the venue just seemed to lend itself to monochrome.

Images by and copyright of MGF Photographics