Question of the week – “How do you get your models looking so serene and calm?”

So on monday I opened up the subject of my blog to Facebook. What were people interesting in knowing more about?

“How do you get your models looking so serene and calm?”

The question above was put to me.

I find in all shoots there comes a moment that the model (of any age) has complete trust in you, and you work symbiotically. How does this come about though?

I work with my models/subjects, I direct but not overly – They forget themselves, by this I mean, the self-conciousness ebbs away. We laugh, we experiment, I usually fall over, or drop something. My natural clutz like abilities and readiness to laugh about it, usually disarms , as we work at different speeds.

The direction is very particular, a head tilt, eyes looking over there, chin down, fingers showing. I am always aware of the shape and form, the line of the person, the gaze and it’s impact, but there is also a certain organic feel to the shoot.

There are always planned and specific shots I go for, followed by ones where I will experiment, and go with what is happening. I am aware of the drama behind a picture, so here the picture above, I had Lexi run towards me, then stop suddenly a little in front of me. I press the shutter a moment after she stops. For me the dynamic is still there. Something has happened. There is a certain tension – created by the previous action.

So back to the question – ‘Serene and Calm’
It comes with trust, and the naturalness that comes with almost but not quite forgetting a camera is there. A strange kind of hypnosis if you like. I love these moments of calm, and some of my favourite pieces happen during these moments. There is a silence and stillness there, that is so revealing.

I strive for these, there is such powerful beauty contained with in them.