Categories
Women I've Shot

“The Housewives”, Private Commissions:
This is Caylin

(Note: “The Housewives” was a term I fondly coined in 2006 after I started getting shoot requests from private, individual women who became my clients. Many of the women who contacted me were married and in their mid 30’s and were doing the shoots as gifts to their husbands. The folder in my archives is still called this and so I’ve stuck to it, in part just for the irony: most of these women are not “housewives” at all, but strong independent and forward thinking women who I have had the honour of documenting.

All are private commissions and the demographic has changed substantially over the years. Some I’m still in contact with, others I’ve totally lost contact with, some have become friends, some may wish not to have their real names used, others don’t mind, some may have their faces obscured for privacy reasons, others have generously shared their experiences of being photographed.)

I often can’t believe I get to shoot such fun work as my “job”, how lucky right?

This is Caylin. I photographed her in 2018 in the beautiful home of a friend who kindly let me use the space as a location.

The series of images where intended as a gift for her fiancé and were given to him the night before their wedding day, so romantic!

Caylin was so wonderful to work with, she’s strong, confident and beautiful and had great reference images for me to work from for the shoot.

We shot about 5 different looks of which Ive included a few here. We used a mix of lingerie from my ‘prop collection’ and garments/items Caylin brought with her.

Her hubby loved the images. It was just all round such an awesome experience with laughter thrown in and I loved how the images came out.

 

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Categories
Women I've Shot

“The Housewives”, Private Commissions:
This is Kim

(Note: “The Housewives” was a term I fondly coined in 2006 after I started getting shoot requests from private, individual women who became my clients. Many of the women who contacted me were married and in their mid 30’s and were doing the shoots as gifts to their husbands. The folder in my archives is still called this and so I’ve stuck to it, in part just for the irony: most of these women are not “housewives” at all, but strong independent and forward thinking women who I have had the honour of documenting.

All are private commissions and the demographic has changed substantially over the years. Some I’m still in contact with, others I’ve totally lost contact with, some have become friends, some may wish not to have their real names used, others don’t mind, some may have their faces obscured for privacy reasons, others have generously shared their experiences of being photographed.)

I loved shooting this really diverse series of images with Kim in 2014. Our shoot ranged from a neutral soft boudoir look, to a strong, high contrast B&W look with musical instruments (such as amplifiers, guitars, snare drums) and then lastly an “Oktoberfest” themed series of her in her classic German dirndl.

We brought in loads of props for the shoot and just had an easy-going and fun time working through the various options and drinking wine while we were at it.

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Categories
Women I've Shot

“The Housewives”, Private Commissions:
This is Jane

(Note: “The Housewives” was a term I fondly coined in 2006 after I started getting shoot requests from private, individual women who became my clients. Many of the women who contacted me were married and in their mid 30’s and were doing the shoots as gifts to their husbands. The folder in my archives is still called this and so I’ve stuck to it, in part just for the irony: most of these women are not “housewives” at all, but strong independent and forward thinking women who I have had the honour of documenting.

All are private commissions and the demographic has changed substantially over the years. Some I’m still in contact with, others I’ve totally lost contact with, some have become friends, some may wish not to have their real names used, others don’t mind, some may have their faces obscured for privacy reasons, others have generously shared their experiences of being photographed.)

I think Jane may have been the very first privately commissioned client I ever had. This image comes from that shoot in 2006, the year after I graduate photography school with “Erotic Female Stereotypes”. The body of work got quite some attention and started to get me the beginnings of jobs like these.

I shot Jane on my old medium format, twin lense Mamaya C33. It was a first and the shoot did not come out the way we had both imagine. There were some nice images and then there was this one, inspired by the famous Playboy cover image of Marilyn Monroe, which came out so beautifully and I still love it.

A quick Google search of Marilyn on red velvet comes up like this…

Ive added an image of the camera to give this some perspective… I shot, hanging awkwardly (and dangerously) from a ladder holding my bulky old camera with two hands and trying to focus and simultaneously hold the sync cable away from the two lenses.

A year later and armed with much more experience I re-contacted Jane. I had always felt I had not done her justice and I offered her another shoot. We set it up and it came out wonderfully, this time shot on my first digital Canon camera.

The images went on to be published alongside a story in the Sunday Times, but more about that in Janes second post…

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Categories
Interviews & Conversations Projects

Self Portrait Project: #5

The question of publishing a nude image of the self made me reflect on what I am asking many of my clients to do when I’m publishing their images on this platform. It would be a double standard, I thought if I couldn’t do the same and at the same time there is a certain sense of separateness one feels towards an image like this, it is an image and no longer “you”, it’s a body, it could be any body and its just one moment.

After working with women for so long I think I’m reasonably desensitized to nudity or the body in many respects but at the same time I think I have a heightened understanding of what exposing the body means to many normal women as well, in terms of how we curate how we are seen by others.

From this shoot there were generally many more provocative images than the one I chose in the end and the selection process surprised me.

The final image below was an accident, it was taken after we stopped shooting and I was dancing and jumping around jokingly. I decided on using this image as apposed to the more provocative ones I shot because I think that the expression of joy, movement and freedom, which are expressed in this image, are powerful statements about accepting and understanding our sensuality, the beauty in freedom and confidence as apposed to a contrived notion of it.

I shot this image using two very old movie lights which live in our studio. I covered myself in oil and donned thigh-highs for the shoot. There is still a stain on our grey studio wall which we can’t seem to get off….

Self Portrait Project 005 Leah Hawker 2014

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