Friday, November 07, 2014

Making of the GIANT horse.

Thought it was about time I write a little about shooting the giant horse image!

The rocking horse itself was one of the first ideas myself and my boyfriend, and carpenter, Will came up with. The plan was to get free wood! I didn't have money to put towards the materials really, and with the amount of wood needed would have cost a fortune so I put the feelers out for anyone that had a bunch of wood going spare. Luckily it wasn't long before a friend offered pallets they had spare, so they dropped of 10, and Will and I had the task of pulling the pallets apart and knocking all the nails out!

Luckily it was a beautiful day and I was with my favourite person.

Not the best photo, ha, but this is 10 pallets worth of wood all ready to make into a horse!

We lucked out on the day of building the horse, felt like the first proper day of spring, warm and sunny. The team included myself and Will, and Will's best friends Matt, John and Ed. Ed being an artist designed the horse, and quite frankly it was a beauty :)

All images shot on film by Mr John Clayton.

These men are wonderful. I really mean that and not just saying it cause of the way they have helped me in the GIANT photos so far. They are gentlemen, pure and simple, and working on projects with them, hell, just hanging out with them, has been the biggest highlight of my year. 

So after the horse was built, it sat at Will's house for...months. Seriously months and months went by, the horse was sitting there, it had even been gifted a feeding bag thanks to Will's mum. Planning the shoot was, to me, terrifying, The effort that had been involved in planning and making the horse, quite frankly, I didn't want to let everyone down. I knew I had the ability to take an ok photo, but I was scared that it wouldn't be great, and the point of this project was to create beautiful images, weird and wonderful and real images...and what if it didn't turn out that way?

The biggest area I had to tackle was the location, for me the horse had to fit into the surroundings, and man did I go back and forth. Inside, outside, mansion, orchard, I just couldn't see this 12 foot rocking horse making sense in any of it, and it all would have been a risk! But, risks are meant to be taken, and once I finally settle on shooting the horse in one of my favourite spots, Wandlebury Gardens.

So, I had the location, called up and they were incredibly helpful about the idea, and offered us to drive into the private parking which was closer to the shoot location. WONDERFUL PEOPLE! Next up was finding a model, and frankly, there was only one person I wanted...Skye...

I'd worked with Skye years before on an editorial and just never forgot her! We remained social network friends and I was jumping when I reached out to her and she climbed on board with the shoot, though she might not have known how much climbing would be involved on the day.

This lady had hair down to her bum, DOWN TO HER BUM! So I knew I had to get my dream team behind the project and thank goodness my girls Bekki Dureo-Mayo (Hair stylist extraordinaire) and Samantha Cooper (Make Up Artist to the stars) were up for helping!

We started at my house and the amazing girls took on Skye with hair and make up. Of course Molly (my cat) was insisting on sitting in the way and on top of Sam's make up.

We arrived on set late and met up with Will, John and Will's mumma Phil. 

Let me tell you about Will, not only is he the kind of person that stays up with you to paint a 12 foot rocking horse the night before and bring the damn thing all the way to the location, he also BUYS US PIZZA warm and ready for when we get there. Better stop writing now, might cry.

So also, ALSO a few days before I had posted about the upcoming shoot and this amazing lady Claire from Waterbaby Flowers contacted and told me she was gunna come along and give me all sort of flowers for the shoot!!! When she rocked up with her two seriously beautiful girls, man, it made the shoot.

So, here are some behind the scenes of the shoot, all captured by the brilliant John Clayton.

Of course my number one lady Anne Marie came along and massively helped me on the day as well as playing art director.

Skye is amazing, a serious professional but more than that, she is up for anything to help you get the shot. And in my experience few models are really on the same page and willing to get into precarious situations in order to really push the boundaries and make art! Now I wasn't asking her to fly, or sit for 3 hours on ice or anything, but this horse was damn high, and she climbed on without a care in the world and turned it on as soon as she had balance. LOVE HER!

Shooting was very quick, we needed the one shot, and after shooting 50 or so images I felt confident there would be a bunch in there to edit and choose from, also I had to get Skye back to get her train, ha, so once she was down, we were pretty much out of there. And once again Will was amazing, him and Phil and John packed up the horse alone...even when it started raining...

The guilt trip was deserved, these guys were amazing.

So, the final image!

The entire process was challenging and completely rewarding and I cannot thank everyone who contributed enough for their help.

This was the first of what hopefully will be a long and exciting project, and I hope you like it!


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