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Self Portrait Project: #10

We have this crazy “Buttercup” colour backdrop roll in our studio which I was dying to use. I combined it with my soap suds inspiration (combination of the idea of shooting with foam and those punk-bath-time-kiddie-hair-styles one gets photographed with when still little) to create portrait #10.

Using three lights to get this 1950’s pinup kitschnesss1o match the foam and sitting in a giant tub in my studio with shampoo and a glass of wine on a Friday afternoon, I posed for this pic. I suppose the variety of colours and tones in all 10 images so far is also what appeals to me about this image.

 

Self Portrait Project 010 Leah Hawker 2014

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Self Portrait Project: #9

There are elements about this portrait which are masculine, also, to me, this is the “photographic professional” look I kind of have in my head. It was the evening, appropriately, where I invited 20 friends to join me in the project. The friends could bring whatever they wanted to use in their own portrait (which I would shoot in the same lighting set-up I planned to use on the day) and drinks.

I made the shoot area partially private from the social space where people gathered waiting and chatting.

After the one and a half hours I spent shooting my guests (some images to come in a later post), I dressed and had many of them stand behind my camera and shoot me.

I like the quietness and composure of the image, it’s very simple.

Self Portrait Project 009 Leah Hawker 2014

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Self Portrait Project: #8

This is a pretty portrait. It’s me, in my all-time favourite dress. The balloons were in the studio for another shoot on that day and I grabbed them since they matched the vibe of the idea I had.

The image is girlie and sweet and cheesy (and I suppose those are some of the reasons this dress makes me so happy), I wanted the variety in the self portraits to show different facets of both my own character and those related to femininity.

Self Portrait Project 008 Leah Hawker 2014

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Self Portrait Project: #7

I had researched Shibari (the oriental art of rope tying) when I was writing my graduate dissertation and I produced an image using it during that time. I was also commissioned a while back by a Cape Town architect to shoot a group of girls tied up for his annual New Years card to his clients (but more on that later).  I’ve therefore got a heck of a lot of this really pretty textured white rope in my collection of “stuff”.

It is a beautiful and rather intersting prop to work with in images because of the contrast in tone to skin, its implications of control and restriction and the aesthetic value added by whatever form one choose to create with it within the picture space.

The idea to shoot this self portrait came from no where in particular that I can pin point. I had wanted to shoot an image with very classical B&W dramatic lighting which is one of the things I achieved with this image. I love the shapes, lines and tensions of this image and creating it was an experience in itself…

So on Tuesday I asked friends Barbara and Cara to help make me into a kind of rope sausage. I have tied ropes for several images in the past as mentioned above, the techniques, after doing a bit of research, were pretty logical (to me), and the logistics of working with such a medium and a model also equally need to be prepared for.

With wine, gossip to catch up on and possibly not the right amount of explanation of my idea we began. It was a lesson in patience and friend-appreciation as my hands slowly went totally numb while they drank wine and chatted distractedly while a tried to be bossy unsuccessfully from the inside of my constrains.

Still, it was a great and funny shoot with a strong outcome. One would never imagine the kinds of things that go on behind-the-scenes of image making and what is put into creating such a simple image.

Self Portrait Project 007 Leah Hawker 2014

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