Creating intense colour in a photograph
I was working on a project for a German magazine, Stern, and I ended up in Ouarzazate in Morocco, south of the Atlas. I was working with a well know model at the time, Waris, she's from I think, Somalia. She's a beauty, wonderful, good personality, strong model that you can really do something with. I'd had this idea in New York, that kind of, I actually kind of stole a little bit of the idea from a German illustration from the 1920's. I kind of prepared the shot in this way. I was going to do it in color, so I prepared what I was going to do in color. I arrived there with a nice piece of red fabric and I put back lights on my red fabric, with red lights, red filters on the lights. So not only was the fabric red but the light hitting was red. When you do this, you get a rather wonderful neon effect, so the color looks neon, not just red, but neon red. (energetic music) So, then with her skin, we used a very light, kind of matte moisturizer on her skin. So I wanted a...
certain amount of shine but not too much. I also brought from New York, a food dye, and the food dye was in red and I wanted to dye her tongue red for the shot. So I brought it with me from New York. The other thing I brought from New York, was a gold tooth that I found in a souvenir shop in Times Square. So I bought it and you just clip it on. So it's a gold tooth. The other thing that I had brought is some gold paper, which I rolled into horns. So, it was always about the gold tooth, the tongue and the horns and her attitude, of course. The red was just what I chose, I mean it could have been a different color, it could have been gold, pink, something else, but I chose red. I always preferred it when the skin was a little bit desaturated later. It was a strong looking shot and was shot on a Hasselblad, with a 150 millimeter lens. Fairly straightforwardly shot, you know? The front light was actually natural sun light. So I protected the background a little bit, for the strobes, and then went ahead and used the natural sunlight in the front. So that's how that shot was done. (energetic music)