Shoot: Glam the Dress, Creme (Alex)
So today I've got Alex. Alex has come all the way from Montreal?
New Finland, where is that?
Right on the very east coast.
Is it by Montreal? No, are you--
It's an island. We're in Canada. Oh you're in Canada, okay, wow. So from the other side, yeah, to here. And she's my glam the dress today. So Tiffany can you just bring that skirt up here? I just want to show what Alex is wearing. This stiff tulle cost me about... I think $7, maybe $7 to $14. I try and buy around 10 meters of it. This is stiff tulle, it's not fairy tulle, it's not bridal tulle, this is stiff rigid tulle, okay? And what I like about it is it does this thing where you can go like this and you can screw it up, and it catches against itself so it looks very portrait couture. Now these dresses cost me around $40 to $60 to make and I've got about five different colors in the studio. What I love about them is it's kind of going past the portrait shoot into the fairytale fantasy. Now I think I'm gonna...
teach you about how to sell it and educate it later, so today we're just gonna learn how to design and shoot it, right? So we can take questions about it later, 'cause I need to create a portrait couture folio for you that is really rocking so that you can have lots of options on how to do this. This is what makes my clients go crazy. And the slip I bought was really cheap, it's actually a bend on brassier, so it's a bra and it's just a very simple hip line, and I put it over the top of the skirt because this skirt has no belt on it, it is just tulle gathered together and hand stitched at the top. It takes about an hour to hand stitch because I don't have a sewing machine. So I hand stitch them while I'm watching movies, DVDs. I sit on the couch, I'm surrounded by tulle, and I hand stitch them. Every now and then I either stitch my own skirt into it, or 'cause I watch TV, or I stich the bottom of the dress and I'm like, ugh, I have to cut it. But I have lots of fun doing that. So I'm not a dress designer but I love this look. This here I found at a... What do you call them here?
A thrift shopping?
Vintage, no, no... Just a second-hand--
A thrift store?
Oh, I go thrift store shopping but this was--
Yeah, I went to a thrift store and this was on the thrift store shelf for $20, it still had its original tag on it from the sixties and it had never been worn. It is just a corset piece that goes up under the breast line like this, so all of these, this whole outfit is under $100. It's been worn in my studio, it's stretchy so it fits, you know, lots of different sizes. I've also got variations right up to a size 20 in this corset because the skirt will fit everybody. And what I've done it I've sold this outfit shoot multiple times because people actually request that outfit. Now I'm not saying that that's a great thing to do to create your own outfits, so I'm gonna show you how to get your clients to create these outfits. Because they love them so much they want to. Also if you're entrepreneurial or a smart photographer, you would design these outfits to sell to your client. Because ultimately these women want to take this home. I've never had a girl put this on and go, "I want to keep all of this." And yet it's something I could style for them. So if I said to Alex, "You want to do a portrait couture shoot?" I'm gonna talk about that later because I'm gonna get so lost in talking about selling it. Okay, this here is a piece of ribbon and this here is a piece of organza. It's around maybe $10, $10 or $12 to buy a piece of organza. This is my bad hand stitching, if you've got a good camera lying there you'll crack up laughing when you see that. I bought a piece of ribbon, and the idea with this piece here is the tulle is for volume, but it's this one here that layers. And I realized that I needed to create these extra layers. One to create this look, because again not a fashion designer but I am a photographer and I realized two things. As soon as a I put a layer like this onto my client I could get this. And as soon as I got any type of movement in my dress I was creating glam the dress, rock the frocks. So to me I started to create these, and now I have a whole lot of these. And they hang in my studio and make my studio look pretty, and they are beautiful. So I'm gonna teach you how to play with that. Then Tiffany, when she changes out her outfit, because I then am putting her in a black outfit. So I'm taking here from fantasy cream into a fantasy black, which is, you know this is very pretty and very princess-like and then we're gonna take her into a black look and while she changes over, Tiffany and I are gonna show you how we made all the pieces for that. So absolutely awesome, what I'm gonna do now is I'm gonna shoot for a solid half an hour. I'm gonna try and create as many shots as I can. Shoes off here up, for a portrait couture manual for you so that you can keep this and go home and rock it. Is there a hair tie there?
Sue I just want to say, the internet is so excited and if I didn't already think you were brilliant, which I do, like you are brilliant! This is incredible. Okay go, sorry.
I just had to say that.
This is just girl fun, I mean are you kidding me? I get paid to dress people and play dress up. I've been playing dress up my whole life, and it actually was born from one thing, this is how it happened. About three years ago I had a client ring me up and she said, "I'm coming for a shoot tomorrow "and my luggage hasn't arrived and I've got nothing." And I didn't actually have much of a shooting wardrobe, and I knew she wanted something quite glamorous, so I went down to the local material store, and I thought, "Well I'll just try to make some dresses "out of fabric," 'cause I knew she was little as well and she wouldn't have fitted any of my outfits. And I got black tulle, and I made the very first black tulle skirt and I got a vintage corset that I, it's vintage 'cause I bought it when I was 18. (laughter) So technically it's vintage now, and she could fit it because it's small but it's a stretchy corset, and she wore a black bra, almost identical to this. And I took 25 shots of her in this black outfit, 25 shots in the same outfit and she bought them all. So I remembered thinking it wasn't the fact that it was one outfit, it was the fact that is was 25 different poses and it was the fact that it was such a rocking outfit. And yeah, so let's go and shoot it. Is there a hair tie? (murmuring)
You want to go this way?
Yeah. I just can't get serious about the shooting business with my hair down. What we've done today is we've created a different type of background. It's something that you have probably seen on my blog, if you have seen my blog recently, you'll notice that... I actually think maybe we should take the V flat down and bring in the two halves. And just so the students can see. Otherwise you're not getting to see where we want to go. I need a box. What you're gonna see now... Will amaze you. (laughter) No. (chuckling) I'm just being silly.
It's true though. It already is.
What I'm gonna show you right now, I'm being silly. What I'm gonna show you right now is... It's every pose you saw yesterday, okay? It's just in a big frock, that's the difference. Okay we need the two halves, you need the reflectors, yeah, both of you on either side. (murmuring) No. (chuckling) I'm gonna get her to sit on that. But... Can we get the ottoman in? We're gonna bring the ottoman in because I feel like the box is too hard to kneel on, okay?
I just feel like she's gonna hurt her knees and I would rather her sit to start. So I never start people off moving, I never start people off moving because I want them to just get comfortable with being in front of the camera first. So the first thing I would do is I would put her on here and I would get her up here onto her knees.
Just on here?
Yep, so right up, and... Pull it all up and just jump up here onto your knees and sit down on your feet, that's it. So I kind of look at it like that princess shot straight away, and I'm gonna get here into the tulle and get everything going. I just need that V flat to be towards me just a little wee bit more, towards Alex, that's it, stop. And we've put paper on the backdrop today because we wanted to show you a variation of just a backdrop that we made with tissue paper. And what we're gonna do is take it off afterwards, because I painted that backdrop that light gold beige color, and then I'm gonna show you how we did that in the halftime break because Tiffany actually made it for me. Okay, from here, I'm gonna start off quite... Static. So girls come around to me, yep, and bounce it to her. That's the one, okay, there you are there, perfect. Alex what I want you to do is to sit up really tall though your neck and shoulders, good girl, and I want you to push your chin towards me and down, stay right there, don't move. (camera beeping) Okay Alex, relax your mouth, chin down a touch, and lots a little tickle of a smile in your eyes, good girl here it is. Okay, I don't like that backdrop because it's too dark on the left hand side, so it just needs to come this way a little bit more, just to make sure we've got it right before we-- Stop, stop, that's it. We're gonna just turn that into the light. Bring your chin forward and down to me, that's it. And do you have a hair dryer Simona?
And we've got too much light, so I just want to bring that down. I want a V flat maybe. (speaking indistinctly) Go back a bit, no, no, too much. As we turn these lights off now I've lost this light, so... Okay, we manipulate light first and then we go for it. I just need to know what I'm gonna get as soon as I put this light up here.
Pick your color.
No it's white, it's a diffuser. And it's in the black bag, it's actually a--
I got it.
I'm gonna show you something I keep in my camera bag and I travel, wherever I go in the world I travel with this. And it's something that I wanna show you that is really really really important. Okay, this is what I use as a light diffuser. And it's a chiffon organza, chiffon polyester actually. And what I do is if you walk there, if you watch Alex's face on the side, this is equivalent to a curtain. I take this with me whenever I shoot because if I have to, if I'm in a situation where I have to diffuse the amount of light that's going to my client, you know, I carry this with me. This is something that I keep, I keep it with hair pins so I can just pin it up against the wall. Put it down, and it just softens the amount of light. I can hold it up to any window, I can pin it onto any window. You know this is something I pull out of my camera bag all the time and when I've got too much light. So obviously somebody's gonna have to bring me a pin while I'm standing here because otherwise I'm gonna be standing here for a while. Yeah, like this. (speaking indistinctly) Yep, as high as you can. Do I have a tall person? Gabe, quick. High as you can, high, high. Go, go, go. That's it, perfect. Anything I can diffuse I'll take it. Do we have a camera behind me? I just want to show Alex's face and just show you how much I can bring this light now up into here just by putting that reflector there. So I've just diffused that light coming in there, and then I've put this up, this bounce up. And then we're good to go. Open that out a little bit more Tiff, this one Tiff, this one.
Yep, just so it catches that light. Stop, perfect. Yep. You can just stay up because it's Tiff that has to drop so everyone can see the change, yeah. Alright, and... Okay, what I want you to do is put your hands out like that and then pull your elbows behind your body. That's it, push them back. Drop your shoulders down, that's a girl. Okay, so the hands are out like a princess frock, feels weird, beautiful. What that does is tapers the waist. Bring your chin around to me this way and lift up nice and tall, and then just bring your chin forward and down. There it is right there. And push me forward Simi. Yep, okay, don't push your chin too far forward. You've come too far forward, go back Alex, go back. Okay, and I just want you to go chin down a little wee bit more, stop. Okay. What I'm gonna do, stop everything. Stop everything. Is, I don't like the background, we tried it, it didn't work. What I'm gonna do is I'm gonna flip straight to the next Keynote and I want you to tear that off. Just because I've got lots to show you, so you can just take that off. I'll get Simona to help you. I'll have the Keynote remote, so I'm just gonna cross over. And I'm not gonna create you a manual if I don't like it. Because if you have to keep it then I want it to be amazing. So what I'm gonna show you is this. I created the tissue wall in the beige because I wanted, because I did this shoot in Sydney and I really really loved the shoot. I designed the shoot 'cause Kristof is the hair stylist, and her was shooting it, and I loved the idea that she looked very Victorian and I wanted to go to the blood reds. I found that it was impossible to get a blood red backdrop, and so what I did was I created this backdrop with tissue paper and I just wrinkled it up and pinned it onto the polystyrene board. It cost around $48 dollars to buy the tissue paper, and so it was a cheap backdrop and it was very very effective. I wanted to try and create the same thing with the beige, and we did, we created the same thing with the beige, it doesn't take very long to put it on, but I just didn't like it. If I don't like it I'm not gonna shoot on it. I'm actually somebody who suffers from not liking patent backdrops. I get sick of them really really quickly, and as soon as I start shooting them I just hate them. So I always find, like that red backdrop will probably never be used again, that's why tissue paper was really good, because obviously I'll never use it again, I could throw the tissue paper away or use it for arts and crafts or whatever. And yeah, so I thought to myself, "Well let's create this sort of backdrop from the gold." But yeah, I'm just not really happy with it so I'm gonna change it out before I start shooting.
If you use fabric, are there fabrics you want to stay away from?
You know what, these here in the backdrops... Try and get those pins out. These here that you can see in the Keynote are all fabric backdrops that we bought, we went out and bought a whole lot of fabric backdrops to try a whole lot of different kinds. And what I found was, they're so strong and dominating in the image unless you're shooting down the wall and you have that depth of field. So when you have that sort of depth of field and the backdrop's dropping away, there's lots of light on the front wall it kind of works. But when you're shooting dead on, and I really hate it when there's a two tone backdrop. So when you have a backdrop that has a black and a glitter pattern on it, I think is so busy you might as well photograph, you know... It just to me looks all about the backdrop and less about the model. Is... Can you run around, McKenzie run around and help them? They're nearly done. I've got lots to show anyway. What we're gonna do is when they get dressed, when Alex gets dressed into her next outfit we're gonna introduce a few shoulder pieces that I started to create. So all of the sudden I started to add flowers to images to make them look more pretty, because I kind of thought if people didn't bring in very fancy dresses, people would bring in very plain outfits, so I have all these beautiful big flowers in my studio, as in a bouquet about this big of real touch flowers that I bought, and it's a huge bouquet and it's really beautiful. And so what I did was I started to pull heads off the big flowers and stick them in my clients' hair, and I realized then that I was creating these kinds of flowery looks that were really beautiful. And so I went out and I started to look for more decorative necklines. So I thought to myself as a designer, what if I could design necklines and shoulder pieces that I could just have in the studio, and you could just have a black dress but a black shoulder piece that just wrapped around your shoulder with flowers and tulle on it and just make it look like a fashion shoot? And so I got all this tulle and I just screwed it up, and I would twist it like a rose and then put a pin and needle through it and just pull it tight. And then I would twist the next bit and pull it tight, and I started to gather these shoulder pieces together and then stick flowers into them, and then I went... Is it Michaels here? I went to Michaels and I bought all of these white feathers, and I went home with a box of teabags and I stained all the feathers and all the roses with tea. Because if you stain them with tea you actually make them look vintage, it looks older. And then what I did was I stained all of the tulle with tea as well, because white tulle looks very bridal, and pink tulle is very pink. But I wanted that dusky, dirty tulle color that looked more win-tage than bri-den. So I started to find these things, now these little things at Michaels are about $3. I threw them in the sink and then threw about 50 tea bags in with them. And I prefer PG Tips as a tea drinker, they also blend very well, taste very nice, and they bleed very well for when you're staining outfits. A few of the vintage bras that I bought in LA five months ago I also stained with tea. Then what I found was I would just pin them on and I would create these shoulder pieces and hair pieces that were more couture, and they were so cheap and easy to make and really fun to make and they just added and added to my clients, to my shoots. Also people started to call me for shoots, and they would say things like, "What do I bring?" And I would go through the whole list of make the effort, buy the dress, hire the outfit. But they would say, "You know that shot of that girl "with that floral shoulder piece?" And I would say, "Yes," and then "Was that hers?" and I'd say, "Actually it's mine." "Could I have that?" And I said, "So you want the same shoulder piece?" And they're like, "Yes." So I realized it wasn't deterring people by having a little bit of accoutrement in the shooting wardrobe, what it was was making people more excited about coming in and doing a look like that. And it started to get quite exciting 'cause people were getting really into it. Okay, so we're back to our gold backdrop, I've got... To get going, alright.
Where do you want it to be?
Yeah, I want it back. Because it's really gold, and it's really not very nice. Okay.
Was there something specific you didn't like about that color doing the texture? Or you just--
When I took the photograph I felt like the paper was dominating her, and I would rather it be about her and yeah, I just felt like... Can we put a blocker on the backdrop? So just like anything there, like that, up there. You know that-- No, no, the skinny one. Okay. So, I feel like it's always about my client and it's never about the backdrop. That for me is what I do, and so when I start introducing... When I start introducing backdrops I feel like sometimes it dominates too much... Oh it's here, sorry. And I don't like anything that dominates my client. So what I'm doing now is I feel like it was too much light going to my backdrop, did you see the change in the backdrop now? Okay, I don't want that light to be hitting that backdrop and bouncing off, I want it to be about her in the front. Okay, so here we go. Stay exactly as you are. What I do is when I'm setting up my clients I often talk to them, chat away to them, and clients do the most amazing thing. They sit in the most perfect poses, and they always do it naturally, and whenever I'm talking to them, and no matter what I'm talking about, it always intrigues me that they stay, they get into these positions, and then I tell them to stay still. So right here I want you to stay exactly as you are. I want you to put your hand onto your thigh, I want you to slide your elbow back this way, I want you to bring your chin around, lift up nice and tall, good girl, stay there. (camera beeping) I keep forgetting I'm on the 25. Bring your chin all the way around to meet your shoulder Alex, all the way around, all the way around. Relax your mouth, good girl, there you go, right there. Stay there. Okay, so what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna drop a little bit of a hair dryer in here. Tiff bring that back up. Can you just stay here Tiff? Yeah. (murmuring) Yeah. (hair dryer blowing loudly) Okay, I want you to sit up nice and tall, so that was one, and now turn around and I'm just gonna go horizontal. Now chin forward and down. (hair dryer blowing) Alex relax your eyes and look at me. Relax your eyes down to there, that's a girl. Lift your glance. (hair dryer blowing) So the first thing I do, I have portrait two straight away. Okay, while I keep shooting can I just have somebody, one of the boys come help me out, I need you to get that diffuser as high as you can, so get a box, jump up, I'll just keep shooting and you just block some of that light for me. We've got too much contrasting light. And if not I'm gonna move her backwards, because we want to make it perfect. You stop looking at that and you look at me. (laughter) Okay, open her up the chest Simona, you keep putting hair across her... That's it. Okay, now, can you bring that up? I want you to open our body up to me this way, that's a girl, stay there. Now lift up nice and tall through your neck and shoulders, bring the elbow in, elbow in, that's the one. And this hand slides behind, there. Nice and tall, stay there. Push your chin towards me Alex, chin towards me and down. Not yet. Very slowly what I start to do is turn her into the shot. So she started off shot down right down the shoulder, in fact go all the way, even more. That's it, stay there. Bring your hand halfway back, that's the one. Put it down. That's it, so go forward with your hand, now work that shoulder forward, good girl. Bring your chin all the way around to me Alex and then eyes down. That's the one, perfect. Okay, from there what I want you to do is I want you to sit up onto your knees.
You want it higher?
High, yeah, as high as you can. More than that, yeah, right up as high as you can. Okay, now I want you to sit up onto your knees and do that princess shot you did before. So gather some skirt around you, nice and scrunched up, that's it, I want you to put your hands onto your skirt like this, and then I want you to bring your elbows back. That's it, now don't pin your shoulders back, you just bring your elbows back. That's the one, so it's like this out here. So put your hands out here and just bring your elbows to there, good girl. Sit nice and tall, bring your chin around to me this way, don't move. (camera beeping) And bring your chin down a little wee bit. Engage those eyes for me Alex, I need that expression back. So I need it when you give me that little wee tiny smile in your eyes, that's the one. Can you give me a bit of fan here, yep. (hair dryer blowing loudly) Okay, relax your mouth Alex, relax your mouth. Smile through those eyes for me. Good girl, beautiful. Okay, from here what I want you do is bring this hand up to here, push into your breast line, that's it, stay there, don't move, and just relax your fingers out. Okay, lift up your chin just a tiny tickle, that's it, you're not doing anything there that has to be up, and you've gotta bounce in, not onto the side, bounce it in. That's it, perfect. Okay your thumb goes down, your fingertips go out, that's it, and then sit into your hand, that's the one, good girl, stay there. (camera clicking) Sorry, blink. Okay, now bring your chin down, engage down this way, that's the one. Elbow in, all the way in, all the way in. That way, good girl. Stay there, perfect. Lift your chin up, put your fingers out Alex so that they're not curling like a claw, they're cupping like this. Go out into your, up here a little bit, stop. Don't move your face, so bring your chin back down, and I want you-- Oh, stay there, stay there, that's beautiful. Don't move, relax your eyes to me, good girl. Okay, let's move on. So from there I want you to stand up. And I want you to go... I need the other skirt that she can throw. Actually no, no, lie down, lie down. I want you to go around there and I want you to lie on your tummy. Yeah, mm-hmm. I always take this shot in a tulle skirt 'cause I think it's so cute. What I like about is, we've just gotta get it all up around here. So flat down and... (murmuring) No too high, but just see if you can grip it. Always grip the tulle against each other, bunch it up. Now because Alex is young and she's got that young, sort of fun dressed up look I want to do something where I would kick her feet up. So you need to sit up nice and tall, that's a girl. I want this hand to go here and I want this one to go across. That's a girl, stop. I want you to bring your chin around this way, okay. And I want you to... Okay that's not helping me, stop. There that's gotta come up, that's the one. If anything can you just put it up as a block, yeah, because I'm just getting so much contrast, yeah. That's right, that's perfect Simona, thank you. Okay, from there I'm going to get you to bring your chin all the way around, that's the one, stay there, bring your chin around to your shoulder and stretch your arms out a little wee bit more. That's it. So, I want you to bring your chin around now, stop, don't move. Not too much smile on your mouth, just relax your eyes. Get in around me Tiff, that's good, perfect. Perfect, don't move anything, that's so gorgeous. Good girl, good girl. Okay, what I want you to do now is I want you to walk your elbows over here. Yep, keep going, keep going, keep going. THat's the one, and now turn your hands away from the camera. Stop here, that's the one. Now what I'm gonna do is use her tulle to the right side to fill this frame. Okay, so lift up tall Alex, that's it. And bring your chin to the reflector, stop, okay lift up nice and tall and bring your chin this way. Stop, this way, that's it, don't move, good girl. And I want you to bring this elbow onto here, No, yep, elbow across. Keep going, keep going, keep going. And I want you to put your hands into your hair on the outside. So up in there, that's it, pull your hair out. So pull out, yeah, that's it. Now bring your chin back to me. So it's quite natural for everybody to do what Alex just did, she went into her hair and turned her head away. So bring this hand out and just put it in the front, okay, and now slide that across 'cause we always want our elbows on the inside of our shoulder line. Now lift up, now pull your hand away from your hair without turning your face away. That's a girl, so put that up. And what I want you to do is I want you to fall this way a little bit more. That's it, and now bring your chin back to me, always chin back. Lift up nice and tall. That's the one. Relax this hand like ballet hands in the front, falling down. Over here, that's it, perfect. And lift up, beautiful, fall into that pose a little bit more and give me a big gorgeous big smile. That's the one. So I'm gonna use more like a sort of candid position when I start to roll people around. What I can do is I can try and light this up a little bit more, bring your elbows around. Away that way, that's it. And push back with your body, so keep your elbows there but scooch back a little wee bit more. Cross your feet and bring them up, that's it. And just stretch out your arms a little bit more. Bring your elbow towards me, that's a girl. And bring your chin around this way. And just make it more fun for everyone, so it's right there. Get closer Tiff, to her not me. That's it, chin around to me Alex, and I want a beautiful big smile, point your toes. Good girl, that's gorgeous. Okay, let's stand you up. And let's put, not yet, let's push that ottoman back to that side. No, against that wall. She's gonna sit back against it, that's it. You could bring in any beautiful chair you've got, but remember if it's an ornate chair it's going to, you know, be in all of your shots and you're gonna get sick of it really quickly. Sit down. Straight down, straight down, no down on the ground. That's a girl, perfect. So from here I need her more in the center of the backdrop, so I'm gonna pull this out a bit, and I'm gonna bring this around Tiff. I wanna separate the backdrop real quick, yep. And now I need you over here. And what I'm gonna do, exactly the same thing, I'm gonna use the couch, sit up tall Alex onto your feet like this. Screw up that dress, get lots of movement like this, separate it. That's a girl, you look at me, don't worry about her. And I want you to recline forward to me, that's it, a little bit more, little bit more. Now this hand goes onto your thigh and your elbow goes down, that's it. And I want you to push your chin towards me, stay there. (camera beeping) I want you to sit away from the chair so that there's a gap between your back and the chair, so push your bum forward, that's it, put your elbow on the edge of the, little bit more, stop. Okay, as soon as a put a shape into here, as soon as I put some space into there, don't move. Push forward like you just did then and look down with your eyes, that's it, stay there. Okay from there, what I want you to do is bring your shoulder forward, bring our chin around, are you guys counting?
They are counting, we'll get the count for you.
Okay, I want you to work that shoulder forward a little bit more and bring your chin down, and a beautiful big smile there. Gotcha. Okay, from there I want you to stand up.
Yes. Make sure your furniture is on wheels, it makes your life so much easier when your furniture is on wheels. I'm gonna do some simple movements with her as if I don't have an assistant, so if you're ever caught in a situation where you're doing sort of a glam the dress shot and you don't have a makeup artist to hel&p you, you're not gonna be without some tools to make it look good, and then I'm gonna bring the girls in. So come into the center. Come into the center. Yep, that's it, I just kind of leave this with a bit of volume, and I want to do two things first. Hold this, and hold this. So I just want to gather it up against itself, give it lots of bunch like that, that's it, and this is what I call the shake. So what it is is you go back against there, yep, sort of come in. Let's see if I can't fix--
Sue we're at 12 poses.
Do you want this to come forward?
Yeah, I've lost the gaff tape on the back of there, yeah, that's it, perfect. Okay, and what I'm gonna do Alex is I just want you to move the dress like this. That's it, perfect, good girl. Okay, so I want you to roll it, that's it, and when you roll it you use your shoulders to roll. Okay, what you're not gonna do is roll with your elbows out like this, 'cause we don't Farmer Joe, we keep our elbows in, okay, so elbows always stay into our waist. So we always try and create a dance-like movement whether people can dance or not. And when you dance you use this movement here, okay? So it's a quick change, and it's elbows in, and it's just a roll forward at the same time, and then you can introduce the shoulders. So you can't expect people to do that all at one time, so you just do it slowly. So first off I go, I want you to just do that roll. No don't do the shoulders, just do that. That's it, okay. Now, you keep your elbows in, that's it, good girl. That's perfect, and now you bring your shoulder this way, that's it, okay so you flick, that's it. And now what you do, slow down, slow down, you just go this way, that's it, this way. And as you can see her moving-- Slowly, slow down, slow down, it's not a dance, it's just a movement. I can see her starting to look into positions where I think, "Oh, that looks really good, that looks really good, "that looks really good." So I start doing this. Okay, so really slow movement for me Alex, real slow. Keep going, keep going, keep going, and keep bringing your chin to your shoulder. So no matter what you do, you bring your chin to your shoulder. Now look at me, now look at me and do a big smile. Now look down, now look down and do a huge laugh smile. Good girl, now turn all the way around and look at me again. All the way, look back, work your shoulder, look back at me, at me over here. (laughter) Keep coming around, turn around. Like this, I want you to turn and look back, keep going, turn and look back, and as you do it I want you to keep the rolling movement going the whole time, don't stop working, don't stop working it, keep going. Look back, look back, look back! Look at me, look at me. Look at me! (laughter) Look at me, it's all about me. That's it, that's it, okay go. Eyes down, eyes down. And turn back now, go, go, go! Now when you turn back, Alex go like this. Turn back and look straight at me over your shoulder like that. So as you turn flick that skirt up, that's it, and really work your shoulder back to me. Okay go, look back, look at me, look at me. Here, here, here. Keep going, keep going, keep moving and keep turning. Do it again, do it again, do it again, stop. Okay, now, I can out of those images find the ones that I like. I can go through and correct basic movements like the back of the arm, if it's too flat against the breast line and it looks big I can go and create an arch in her back to make it look like she was working it more, but what I'm looking for is connection to the shoulder and real, real expression. Now this is just an exercise in showing you something really incredible. Now instead of actually expecting her to dance, I'll show you something even better. Stay exactly as you are and kick your booty back this way. That's it, so kick it right back, so I want your bum out that way, that way, good girl. Then I want you to bring your elbow to here, so hold the dress, don't let go of the dress. I want you to bring your elbow to here, that's it. So your shoulder's working it, right? Now, I want Simona, you're gonna stay there, Simona's gonna come into here, and Simona's gonna do this. Okay? You're gonna work it, I want you to stay still. I want you to lean forward, I want you to kick your bum back, I want your elbows in perfect position, I want you to turn and look at me like this, chin up just a little wee bit. I want you to relax your mouth, chin around to me. Chin around to me, work that shoulder Alex, chin around to me. Keep coming around, keep going, keep going, keep going. Relax your mouth, chin up half an inch, go. Alright, now what I want you to do is I want you to turn this way, beautiful. Okay, what I want you to turn now is do this. So push this one out, that's it, look at me. Okay, turn your face to me, no, no, no, just your face. That's the one. Go back, go back, go back, that's it. Up here like this, like you're holding the skirt, chin up this way. That's it, little bit more, that's it. Okay, this one here I want you to let go of that and put your hand out to here, elbow down. Elbow down, now wrist down. Elbow down, wrist down. Okay, this make all the difference. You're like this, okay, that's the craw. I want you to be like ballet hands, so your wrist comes down, that's it. And I want you to work the shoulder, stop, I want you to bring the chin down, stop. Don't move, work your body Alex, I want to believe it, so I want you to relax your mouth. So don't do a little smile, just chin up to me now. That's it, and go Simona. Such a simple movement. So now what I want you to do is I want you to turn this way, and Tiffany, I need you Rachel. I need you to throw on the other side. Okay, so for now I've got two bits of fabric up, so now what I'm gonna do is I'm going to get you to do this. I'm gonna get you to put your hand here, that's it, and it's not damsel in distress, okay, it's dancing, so up here. Wrist forward. That's it, and I want to get you to do this here. Okay, so I want this wrist up, that's the one, now I want you to work your body for me, work it, stretch it out in the back. No, that way, that's the one. I want you to put this hand higher, okay, now I want you to just look down. Okay that's it, so I'm gonna give the illusion that she's moving, and let's see, anything you can throw here as well, just anything. And don't throw it too high. Okay work it for me Alex, I need you to work it like your moving your body. Okay, and go. (camera clicking) Okay, from here as I'm starting to move her a little bit more it starts off with a bit of fabric movement. Okay so from here I want you to cross your elbow like this and I want you to kick your shoulders down this way. That's it, don't move. Okay, relax your mouth Alex, stay there. Tiffany just throw your side, go. Too high, do it again. (camera clicking) Okay from there I want you to throw both sides. Don't lean down, I'm gonna change you first. What I want you to do is I want you to put your hands here, that's it, straight down the back, and I want you to lean back, that's the one. Stay there, don't move. And bring your chin all the way around. Throw both, not too high, go. Okay I want your eyes looking down, down. And huge, big laughing smile, good girl, that's awesome. Stay there. Okay, too high girls, don't throw it at her. Okay, what I want you to do now is I want you to put this fabric up and around your shoulders and I want you to hold it. No, not for this yet. So I want you to hold it and wrap it around you, but not like that. Okay, around you there. Okay, that's it, so nice and low, that's there. And I just want to use the fabric that she's wearing, but I want to tuck it away. Perfect. Alright, so from here I want your hands under your boobs. So this way Alex, that's it, stay there, tighten it up Simi quick. Alright, bring the shoulder around Alex, you worry about me, not her. Stop, don't move. Okay, so as soon as you see that, that's working for me. Just tuck it into the belt, or under her hand. See I just use it, tuck it under the hand, but the the trick is speed. Okay, from here... Give me a reflector, Rachel. And shoulder forward, turn around. And relax your eyes Alex, nice and low. Relax them down, thank you very much, and throw her dress on this side, anything you've got Tiff. Okay, turn around, beautiful big smile, go. Any movement I can get in there I'll take it. Okay, drop that top layer, alright, and give me a shoulder piece.
Do you want that-- Actually before you put the shoulder piece on, I will do one thing. I want you just to try something for me, I want you to try holding this out like this as something you can almost dance with. Just try it, we'll see. You don't always photograph dancers, in fact it's really rare to get dancers into your studio, so it's always good to watch how everyday people move. And it's sort of something... So what I want you to do is I want you to float it like this with long arms, that's it. Not so around, I want it more like here. Not so low, so I don't want you to go scooping down, I just want you to bring it around like this, that's it. And I want you to see if you can get some air in there, that's a girl. And when you go around I want you to look at me like that. So I want you to go around, okay, now work that fabric. I want you to really push it around a little bit more, yes, go. Okay, bring that shoulder all the way like that's it, do that again. (camera clicking) Okay Tiff, come over here and grab that fabric, and when she spins, you throw. Yeah. You gotta connect that shoulder, you've gotta look at me Alex. Set, go. You've got it on that side, just up Tiff. Look at me Alex, not them. Okay, Alex, do this. Like work it to me, that's it, that's it, do it again. That's the one, we got it, and this time look down over your shoulder and do a beautiful big smile, go. Good girl. Alright, more. I want more trailing behind. So instead of bringing your shoulder around like this, I want you to trail it behind you, that's it. But let Tiffany throw it. So you just look over your shoulder and you give me that gorgeous big connection and smile. Go, look at me, look at me, no. Look at me earlier, go. There you go. Okay, and again. I'm just worried about your back hand, because your back hand's flipping in there, so I just want you to bring this trail around, so just relax this back hand, don't put your elbow out. Okay, go back to Tiffany, okay, now look at me from the moment you start turning and just focus on bringing that fabric around and looking at me, that's a girl. There you go, perfect. Okay, now what I want you to do is I want you to do a full spin, so I want you to spin, look at me, and then I want you to spin back and look at me, I just want you to keep doing this. Side to side, and I want you to look down, I want you to look up, I want you to look down at the floor, I want you to look up at me, but every time you spin, I want you to do that okay? Just cross over, I'm gonna do a quick series and see what I get from it. That's just letting you move, just keep connecting to me, keep looking at me, slow down, spin that dress. Spin that dress. Spin it, spin it, keep looking at me. (camera clicking) Slow down Alex, slow down, slow down, go. Big smiles. Keep going, keep going. Look at me Alex, don't look away from me, other side, nice big spin. That's a girl! Beautiful. Alright, I always try, when I do anything dancing I always try and take about 30 images in a sequence, even if I only get three or four really amazing shots out of it. I am not above head swapping out the perfect dress throw with the perfect looking over your shoulder. So I will composite that shot to get a killer shot of her dancing if it looks like she's moving and it looks really fluid. It does look amazing and it's really really important. The next thing I would do, was I created some stuff like this, Tiffany and I made this, and the idea was that it would just go more around the arms than anything else, so it kind of came up under here, up Linda, yeah. And I could tie it here, don't hold it, it's just meant to be for your arms to move through. I could do two things, I just could tuck it up under here 'cause I can't see it, but what it does was it just put more decoration on the arms. I actually just folded a whole lot of tulle up. Do we have pins? So I folded a whole lot of tulle up and just... Hand stitched it together. Just relax your arms so I know where it's gonna fall.
So you're at 30 poses.
It's about 10:15.
Cool, I'm gonna swap it out. Alright so here, just go into cover girl now. Okay, so don't worry about where the pins are, you just put your hands here, that's a girl. And just don't stick yourself with a pin. And go back a little wee bit, give me a reflector, Rachel. And long chin forward and down. Chin around to me, that's it, lift up nice and tall Alex. And give me a long chin. Rachel you need to come up in here. Up and in here, that's it. And there you go, stay there. And give me, yes. Long chin, lift up Alex. Okay, straighten up, relax your mouth. Chin this way, straighten your head up, stop. Bring your chin forward and down, relax your mouth so you're like this. That's it, that's it stay there. (hair dryer blowing) Chin forward and down a touch now, stop. Chin down a bit more. Lips together, tiny little smirk. Just work that hip out a little bit more Alex, that's a girl. And very very gently start to turn your body now, that's it, more, more, more, stop. That's a girl, stay there. And work that shoulder forward, Alex. Good girl, there you go. Don't move. That's it, just tip this way, that's the one. Stay there, all I can see is this hand, so I just want you to bring it through, your hand, more ballet hands Alex, relax them down. Good girl, and bring your chin around to me now. Love that, good girl. Okay, from there take that one out, and just bring in that simple shoulder piece so we can do a side shot. I might use that actually. So... This one here is just again about creating something here, here to one side Simi actually would be really cool. I really just wanted to be able to, all on the other side. Just be able to pin something on. Don't move Alex, you just stay normal, 'cause otherwise we put it on and then you move and it falls off, so you just relax and stay there. (murmuring) Let's just... Maybe one. This is a shoulder piece that I've shot by myself, so I didn't need to have the girls helping me but we'll do it for speed. So it's not something that you have to have a team for. If you have it ready to go, it shouldn't be a problem at all. I just need another pin, okay, over here. Pin?
Here I've got one.
What I don't want to do is make it too big for her. If it becomes too big for her it's gonna just look ridiculous. More pins, need more pins. That's it, cool. Perfect. Alright. There you go. Alright, anything like this that I can make look beautiful, I'm there. So simple. What I want you to do now is just go hands onto your waist like you were before, bring your hands in a little wee bit more, Rachel come up. Nope, and go nice and tall, it's fine. Bring your chin down, chin down, eyes closed. Okay, that's the one. I'll start off in Cover Girl and start moving her around. Okay, lift up nice and tall, so what I don't want to do is cover too much of her, that's the one. Just turn very gently towards me this way. Nope, towards, stop. Don't move. Good. Perfect, okay, chin forward and down. Rachel, forward and down. Oh, I'm calling you Rachel now, I'm posing you. Alex, chin forward and down. Okay, your hands into Cover Girl come up and in. That's it, and you lift up really tall, that's a girl. Chin down, forward and down, stop. Relax your eyes, relax your mouth. That's the one, don't move. From there I want you to turn very slowly this way, and slide this hand to the back. Your other hand goes away from me too, your elbow goes away and your chin comes back. So chin comes back and I want this to tuck in and down, stop. Don't move, okay. I don't want it on the hair, so Simi I need another pin in here, it's too big. Hold that, and... You know at the end of the day, something like this is maybe a one or two shot sale, so you're gonna have to get it, nail it, and then get out. Okay, I want your hands to go around the back of your back and I want you to bring your chin around now, stop. Don't move. And chin around to me, Alex, and down. Around, chin around to me and down, down, stop. Don't move. I want you to drop this hand behind you like this, stay there. Nice and tall up through your neck and shoulders, give me a slight tip this way. There you go, stay put, beautiful. Can you just come towards me in this light? Keep coming, come here, come here, quick. And just turn straight into this light, take a down step. Take it down. Okay, turn around, turn around to me. And bring it around the front Simona. Come into here, I just want to see if I can bounce into this light. Turn to me Alex, turn to me. That's it, stay there. Okay. I want your hands out and lift up nice and tall, good girl. Anything, but to her, not me. That's it, perfect. Alright, don't move. And I'm just gonna drop that down, relax your mouth Alex, that's beautiful. Gotcha. Okay, from here, I want you to... Bring your chin this way a little wee bit more, I want you to bring your whole body this way. Stop, now bring your chin around, don't move, gorgeous. (camera beeping) I think if I fit-- Chin this way, I want you to turn away from me even more. Beauty shots come really simply down to a rotation, you just keep rotating them around, I think it, I you can get into any light flare whatsoever, or into any backlight, you're just gonna have to use it, because it's so beautiful. I just have to shoot every shot-- bring that hand back at the right, back hand Alex, this needs to go away for me, bring your chin around to me more, stop. Chin down, little smile. Beautiful, that's it. Love that. Okay, from here go back into that light a little bit more. I'm just gonna finish on this outfit Celeste and then change for the next one, 'cause I want to keep going. Can I have a throw dress or anything you can let them watch? Or put it this way, let them watch and then left it out, that's it. No, no, no, back to her gold, yep. Okay, so let's see if I can't get any movement through here.
You want her to hold it?
Yes. Well tie it on.
Tie it on?
Yeah. She's gonna hold it but tie it on lower, lower. That's it. Alex, pick it up at the back, that's it, and I want you to see if you can do a movement this way for me, so... Stop, go back again. Go back again, stop. See that there, as soon as I see that tulle come in, don't move. Lights up girls. Don't, okay perfect, wow. If you relax your mouth Alex and turn back to me now. Okay, bring your chin around to me now, and actually what I want you to do is I want you to hold your body across here. Let go and just hold here. Stop, don't move. Chin around to me now. (camera clicking) Okay, from there turn back to me in the front. Stay put, don't move. Okay, no, no, no, come back. That's it, stay there, don't move. Perfect. Can you see what's going on in terms of, all I'm doing is every time I turn her around, so go this way, I just see something different in there like that that I think just really, really works, and then I go back this way and I see it again, and everything I turn her, and then turn all the way around. So there, obviously I'm too big here so it doesn't work. But every time I keep turning her into the light there it's just something gorgeous. So come back, okay, don't move. Okay, give me some lights on. Lights on. (camera clicking) Okay, let's do hands. So what I want you to do is I want you to bring this hand up into your hair, sort of, yeah. Good girl, that's exactly right. Now all you have to do is cross your elbow into the center of your body. So the elbow goes always pointing in. Now you're not talking on the phone, okay, it's very important you don't talk on the phone when you do this pose. This pose is about being in the hair, not the ear. And then this, yep, you had it right, you had it right. And then I want you to cross over your body line with this hand, that's it, stay there. Nice long chin lifting up and bringing it back in this way. Thank you, perfect, chin forward and down. Bring that hand away from your hair, Alex, and bring your chin with it this way. Okay, put your hand back halfway. Stop, there it is, good girl. That's beautiful. Okay, I need you to go, relax those eyes to me, give me a little tickle of a smile, that's the one. Perfect, perfect, oops sorry, blink. Okay, from here I just want you to pick up that dress, and let's see if I can get a little bit of movement. So Tiff you can give her a throw, okay, and so I want that sort of roll in your shoulders. Stop, slow down, work that shoulder for me. And as you do that, Tiff's gonna throw the dress, so go nice and slow, there you go. Nice and slow... There you go, beautiful, and again. And, sorry, and again. Slow down, stay there, stay there. And again, go. And again. Okay this time all the way to the shoulder and down, stay there, don't move, don't move. Give me a flower, don't move. Give me a flower, this one, this one. This one. (chuckling) yeah, give me that, don't move, don't move. Okay, hand goes back, elbow goes back, there, that's it. It's not the flower, there's a flower right there. The beautiful big antique flower. Yep, that's the one. There, look at this. Just bring one flower into there. There you go, don't move, don't move, don't move anything. Tiff. Okay, stop, okay. You are away from me, I want you to curve in, I want you to drop down, stop. Lights on girls. Okay, you've gotta relax that back hand, Alex, so I can't see it. You've gotta bring that chin around to me now, you've gotta drop that bottom lip, and you've gotta soften your eyes for me. Good girl, stay there. (camera beeping) Chin around a little wee bit more, work that shoulder up and forward, chin down. Gotcha. (speaking indistinctly) Sure, you want to break now? So, I just, I guess, I keep moving them, I keep the flow going. Any quick questions?
Well just so you know, we're at 48 poses.
And there are a couple quick questions.
There's one that has been coming up over and over in the chat rooms over the last couple of days, wondering what you do about the seam in your backdrop, if you take care of that in Photoshop?
Okay. Thank you.
And then another question was, how do you, you were saying that the light and the reflection is too much, so from Flee, how do you know when it's too much or not enough?
You can see it, because there's a difference, see I don't want any hotspots on her face, and as soon as you see hotspots on the face you need to neutralize that light and bring it back down again. So it's all about just, looking for hotspots. Okay, I want a flat, flat overall light to the face, no hotspots.
I've been wondering from the backdrop when you did it there, like the color of it is fabulous. Is it giving it the illusion that it's in the room or is that crease in it almost distracting? Or would you Photoshop the crease out?
I Photoshop the crease out, that's what they just asked me.
Okay. Oh, I'm sorry. (laughter)
No, I Photoshop the crease out, yeah I don't leave a crease in. It's very hard to create a corner without a crease, and I want a corner, not a flat backdrop.
Do you Photoshop it completely or leave it kind of...
No, I leave the contrast of the wall but I just take the crease out.
Do you want to keep going with questions or you want to keep--
Okay. bb868 from Germany, "Do you also do these shots outside "or do you rather keep inside so you can control--"
I don't do them outside, but you can.
Yeah, in fact after my last few shoots outside into the sun flare I couldn't get enough of it, yeah. Absolutely.
This is a question from me, why did you say that you think this is only a two shot sale?
No, I said this pose here with this big piece here, was a two shot sale.
Oh, okay thank you--
So I'm not gonna just whack out that, overdo one thing. Like it's just too big--
One that shot, okay.
So I've got one gorgeous shot with it, and I have to change it. If I don't change it it's not gonna sell more--
Thank you for clarifying.
Especially since it was so large that I wasn't gonna be able to turn her on lots of different angles, so I really just needed to get one really good line of it, and one really good close up of it, and those were my two shot sales. I just believe once you've nailed the sale shot you should move on so that you can just keep selling and creating more images. How can you not look at eight different images or 20 different images that are so different and say, "I want every one of those." You know, you've just got to change it up so fast, or quickly enough that you can sell 10 shots in half an hour or more.