Category Archives: Fashion shoots

Ian Trayner, fashion shoot, release the Kraken

Fashion photo shoot “release the Kraken”

I want to share some images I captured at a recent fashion photo shoot. The shoot was organised by PortraitX, and it involved something like 4 make up artists, 12 models and 16 photographers!

Fashion photo shoot on the south coast

As you can see in my photos, we were blessed with good weather. It was a beautiful warm day, and the sky was a superb deep blue with variable cloud cover. Sometimes there were “very expressive” whispy clouds, which added to the images. A healthy wind was blowing, which was very pleasant because it was a hot day. However the wind played merry jingo with the models’ hair!

It was a superb day for me, and I came away with a healthy set of images. I will probably share more of them in future blog posts.

Selected photographs

One of my main aims was to capture an image of a mermaid being dragged from the sea in a net. The lovely Caitlin Barnes-Davis was the mermaid, and she was caught by “The God of the Sea”, played by Marcus Godfrey.

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Photography methods:

Fashion photo shoots organised by PortraitX are always an opportunity, and a challenge. A huge amount of organisation goes into these shoots, but once on location, it is up to the photographers to think on their feet. We may have some ideas up our sleeves, but we have to adapt to local conditions to put them into practice.

Using only natural light:

My photos of Marcus and Akasha (the Kraken) were taken using only natural light, and you can see how I used the sunlight to my advantage. Even in a beautiful setting like this, I believe the direction and quality of the light is the most important factor to consider. I used a polarising filter to increase colour saturation in general, and of the sky in particular. I also added a bit of “clarity” in post production to make the clouds stand out more.

Supplementing natural light with flash:

I added a touch of flash to the portraits of Caitlin and Isabella sitting on the rocks.  The sun is coming at them from behind, over their left shoulders, and I wanted to bring more light into their faces. But I also wanted to retain a fairly natural look, so I used a soft box, and I adjusted the brightness to give a gentle and natural effect.

I used a much “harder” flash, with a small reflector dish, to throw extra light on Caitlin when she was struggling in the fishing net. This is because she is the main feature in those photos, and I wanted to draw the eyes to Caitlin. As always, the direction of the light is critical. I also used Marcus’s arm and the line of the net to help draw the eye to the stricken mermaid. The sea and the distant rocks provide lines that draw the eye towards Caitlin, but I did have to be careful that the horizon didn’t go through her face any higher than it is.

In the close up photo of Caitlin struggling in the fishing net, I lengthened her canine teeth in post production. I also overlaid scales from a rainbow trout on her skin. It seems a shame to transform this beauty into a scaly demon-like creature, but “so it goes”!

Acknowledgements:

People who contributed to this set of images from this fashion photo shoot are;

Caitlin Barnes-Davis is our beautiful mermaid. Her make up was done by Samantha Beck. And the mermaid costume was made and supplied by Lunas Creations.

I have included a “behind the scenes” photo of Caitlin with Isabella Aurora Branco, who was cast as a baby mermaid. Isabella’s make up was done by Bryanna Angel Allen.

Akasha Asylum is the Kraken. The Kraken costume designed and made by Lunas Creations.

Marcus Godfrey is the “God of the Sea”.
His extremely impressive make up (or should that be “special effects”) were done by Katie Johnson.

Rihanna, photo shoot, Yollanda Musa, Viya La Belle, Ian Trayner, fashion shoot

“Rihanna-inspired photo shoot”

Rihanna-inspired photo shoot

Recently I had the pleasure of working on two fashion photo shoots with Yollanda Musa. This was really good luck for me, because not only is Yollanda an excellent model, but she was perfect for a “Rihanna-inspired photo shoot” that I have been planning.

The aim was to shoot a petite, pretty, and very feminine young lady, totally “holding her own” in a macho environment. The location we used for the shoot was a factory/warehouse. Although the factory is very busy during the week, parts of it are very dirty and have a semi-derelict appearance. This made it a perfect location for our photo shoot.

Yollanda’s character was inpired by a role that Rihanna plays in a film called “Battleship“, in which the US Navy defeats alien invaders. Rihanna plays a weapons expert who is… petite, pretty, and very feminine. But she totally holds her own with the “big boys” in an extremely macho environment. Later in the shoot we have smoke and action!

Make up by Viya La Belle

Yollanda asked an excellent make up artist, Viya La Belle, if she wanted to work with us on our Rihanna-inspired photo shoot. And she did an excellent job. In due course I will upload more posts from this photo shoot, but In this first post I have included a “behind the scenes” photo of Viya La Belle making some adjustments to the make up. Please note that Yollanda is standing on a wooden palette in this photo, and that makes Viya look shorter than she is! In all fairness I should make it clear that Viya span most of her make up magic in a much nicer, cleaner, and more comfortable place!

I have also posted two close ups that show the quality of Viya’s make up.

Photography methods

In due course I will be uploading more posts about this photo shoot, which went extremely well. Later we used smoke and action! But in the meantime please enjoy these images.

I was using a mix of Nikon speedlights, and portable battery powered studio flash (made by Ilux). I triggered the flash heads using wireless radio transmitters. Lighting modifiers were mainly softboxes and small reflector dishes (approx 21cm diameter). The cool blue backgrounds were acheived by setting the camera to “tungsten white balance” and putting coloured gels over the flash heads, to make the light they emitted appear “white” to the camera.

Rihanna-inspired photo shoot, Yollanda Musa, Ian Trayner

Rihanna-inspired photo shoot, Yollanda Musa, Ian Trayner

Viya La Belle fine tuning her make up

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Acknowledgements

Model: Yollanda Musa (she is wearing her own clothes)
Make up: Viya La Belle
Assistants: Martin Brown and Steve Brown

Behind the scenes

These “behind the scenes” photos were taken by Martin Brown, and I am very grateful to him for allowing me to share them with you.

Martin Brown, Yollanda Musa, Ian Trayner, Viya La Belle, fashion photo shoot, RihannaMartin Brown, Yollanda Musa, Ian Trayner, Viya La Belle, fashion photo shoot, Rihanna Martin Brown, Yollanda Musa, Ian Trayner, Viya La Belle, fashion photo shoot, Rihanna Martin Brown, Yollanda Musa, Ian Trayner, Viya La Belle, fashion photo shoot, Rihanna