Archives for category: Studio

To this day I am not quite sure what happened during my pubescent years, but I was captivated by such iconic beauties as Marilyn Monroe and Brigitte Bardot and that kind of iconic beauty has been a restless beast inside me ever since. To nicely complicate my life, I also became a transvestite, which was entirely a driven, obsessive, thing. I built my studio to pursue my great love of iconic beauty and have spent many years perfecting my own editing style. Regardless of the modern obsession with de-sexualising Monroe, what Monroe and Bardot did was ooze sensuality and I see no reason to embark on some kind of apologist campaign to suggest otherwise or to rationalise it through notions of exploitation and corporate manipulation. What was also apparent was that these were women of character, unlike the modern homogenised character-less  look and the pursuit of talentless fame that I find repulsive.

Have I got close to satisfying the beast? At every step of the way, I’ve felt a little closer, when I’ve made some editing breakthrough or whatever, but in reality I haven’t even got close yet, partly because I just haven’t done enough studio work to develop it.

I was once asked by a University Media Lecturer if I felt that in editing as I do I was bringing out what I felt were some essential qualities in the models. Then and now I do not think that is the case, I impose my own vision in the editing process, that the models like what I do is really merely fortuitous.

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Until I persuaded myself to become the subject of my work I hadn’t really appreciated fully that the studio is just a performance space like any theatre stage. Once I had embraced that idea I was able to forget about being self conscious or awkward and to centre myself either to project myself to the camera and engage it with my eyes or to pose in a way that looked and felt being comfortable in my body. I’ve thought about it a lot and it seems a tragedy to me that so many people hate having their photograph taken. We only get one body and to not be comfortable with it is awful.

Featuring Shaggy and Leah, Shaggy is soon to publish his poetry and asked me to do some promo shots with the idea of using Leah as a display board for a statement about their growing relationship as the theme of the shoot.  Cybotica Systems is, at this stage, a fictitious company, part piss take, part serious, dreamt up by Shaggy.

By way of introduction and because I am usually to be found on the other end of the camera I decided it would be a good exercise to get in front of the camera and to experience the studio space for myself and to see if I couldn’t get comfortable and just use it as a performance space.  It took a while to settle down and learn to relate to the camera but it’s been a valuable experience and has enabled me generally to feel more comfortable in my bones.

The Pirates Lament – Prelude

"The Pirates Lament - Prelude"

The Pirates Lament

"The Pirates Lament"

The Pirates Lament – Finale

"The Pirates Lament - Finale"