November 19, 2005

Brianna's Return

Brianna first worked with me in the late summer of 2004, driving up from the US to model for a couple of days, and helping me make some very striking images. Since then, we have kept in touch, and while she was unable to make a visit again during the summer, as the days grew shorter, her plans firmed up enough to permit us to pick a weekend to make more images upon.
Digital infrared original
As it was so late in the year, being a realist, I knew that at least some of our time together would be spent working in the studio; in anticipation of her arrival, I'd arranged for a space to work in (while I now own a set of studio lights, I don't have a permanent space in which to work with them), and on the night of her arrival, after a good meal we left to spend a couple of hours working in the studio.

While I didn't have any specific ideas in mind I opted to work with a dead black backdrop, as opposed to my white sheets, as a reaction to my recent work with Alexandra and Liam. In that session I worked predominantly with smooth, seamless backdrops, and the results were still in my mind. With Brianna, I didn't have a seamless white backdrop (usually made of paper) but it was quite easy to make a black backdrop seem totally flawless, so I took that approach.
Digital infrared original, 7 frame stitch
As usual, I began the session with a series of portraits, both to reintroduce Brianna to the whole "being Nude in front of the camera" experience, and to continue to build my body of Portrait Nudes, which have long fascinated me for their confidence and visual power.
Digital infrared original, 4 frame stitch
With these completed, we shifted to working with body scapes, and the most striking image of the session came about quite by accident. I had Brianna sit upon my white sheets (she was up on a table, permitting me to keep the background a solid black), and as she was arranging them under herself, she twisted around away from the camera, and the light flooded over her back. I caught a glimpse of this and called out for Brianna no to move; I quickly made a couple of lighting adjustments, and made the final image (actually, a series of images, as the final photograph is stitched together). From this image on, the rest of the session flowed wonderfully; we continued to work on the table, against the black backdrop, and made a couple of other very striking photos, but truth be told, having made the early image of Brianna's twisted back, everything else in the session paled in comparison.

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