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Guys With Cameras…

1 Jul

I’m back in action!πŸ˜‰
My first photoshoot is next Wednesday so I’ve been spending a lot of time being creative and updating my art portfolio as well as roadkilling leather jackets for some events I have coming up…

I’m almost fully booked until SEPTEMBER now, but have just three days available for bookings in the beautiful Lake District with one of my best friends and legendary art-nude model Madame Bink. This is the FIRST time we have offered a duo shoot so places are likely to go quickly.
Please follow this link for details and testimonies from other photographers, and here are some pictures of the two of us:
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Now, as I have been fighting my way through the ‘inbox rabbit hole’ and two weeks of unanswered emails, I have noticed an interesting pattern which has led to this blog post which has some advice and a spoonful of snark.πŸ˜›

Ignoring spam and anything unrelated to modelling, here is a rough percentage of my inbox:
Bookings, enquiries and updates: 70%
Photo comments and messages from fans: 20%
Booking requests from total newbies and non-photographers: 10%

Total newbies are not a bad thing at all- I actually like working with new photographers and enjoy helping begin a portfolio- it’s a challenge for me on every level (posing, styling a variety of looks, answering questions etc), and it’s one I enjoy! I often get messages from photographers telling me that they want to book me when they are better at photography but booking a professional model can help improve your work instantly.

These two shots are by C Young- she was just a student when I posed for her!
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It begins with peace of mind; we don’t need direction, will turn up on time and most of us are also good stylists with impressive shooting wardrobes. We know how to work with any angle and lighting and can help you get the very best out of your time. There are few better ways to kick-start a new photography hobby (or fledgling career) than by booking a professional.

BUT…

a common complaint I hear among new photographers is the catch-22 situation; they must get references from well-known models in order to prove themselves trustworthy, but no model will work with them unless they already have references (which is an understandable request)!

If you are a new photographer with very few (or no) references, this is how to go about working with a model:

1) Book a studio they know and trust. (Β£)
You get your one-to-one photoshoot in privacy, with a knowledgeable studio owner in case of any equipment malfunction, plenty of lights and backdrops and your model feels secure in her/his environment. (And yes some studios have fantastic outdoor areas for photographers more interested in location work.)

2) Book a duo shoot or work with a team. (£££)
Your model(s) have the benefits of a chaperone, while you will have a greater variety of images working with another model or styling team. At the end of the shoot, you will also have more than one reference.

3) Allow your model to bring a chaperone. (_)
I personally do not work with chaperones- I find them distracting and feel that if I am uncomfortable enough to need/want one, I shouldn’t be shooting with you BUT if your model is happy to shoot with a chaperone, it’s another way to keep him/her comfortable and feeling safe. Also, if you pick the right chaperone you also have a free lighting and wardrobe assistant.πŸ™‚ However, the wrong one can turn a promising shoot into a dire one. In general, a friend or relative of the model is best.

4) Book a place on a studio day or workshop. (Β£)
Studio days usually offer reduced rates with the benefits of extra equipment, wardrobe and backdrops, giving you excellent value for money and one-on-one time with your model.
Workshops are usually more expensive but also give you tuition, though it will be in a group. Either way, you get experience working with a model who will then be able to give you a reference, though I recommend a studio day as models work with so many groups at once it is often hard to build a rapport with every individual.

I understand that some of these options entail spending a little extra money but your reputation is worth investing in. If you build from a good foundation, it will pay off in the end.

I’ve worked with some wonderful people and I love seeing their work evolve over time. It can be daunting booking somebody who’s been a part of the industry for a long time (not just me- any professional model) but I promise, we are a friendly bunch and will not judge you if you forget to take the lens cap off.πŸ˜›

This photo is by Black Lotus and it was one of her first ever model shoots!
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Friendly advice over- the snark zone is below…

In this industry, the term GWC means a β€œGuy With a Camera” (as opposed to a photographer). You do NOT have to be an industry professional to be considered a photographer but you do have to do photography and this means having a portfolio. I don’t mind if it is full of pictures of your nan, your baby, your dog or the local landscape, but please prove to me that you have picked up a camera!

I am not going to sit on my naked backside for any random person willing to pay my rate and I have had too many messages recently from men asking me to help them “start a portfolio”. They never seem to have other models, photographers or studios in their contacts list, always want a full day shoot in a remote location and seem very anxious to discuss things on the phone. Funnily enough, I don’t give out my phone number to everybody that asks for it!
A high court judge will not come over to fix your minor marital dispute; s/he has actual cases to judge.
A firefighter will not pop round to get your stove working; s/he has actual fires to control.
I am not going to come and hang out with you, maybe posing for a snap or two, when I have web content to shoot, fashion shows to do and portfolio shoots to pose for.

There are easier ways to hang out with a hot naked chick than a fictitious interest in taking my picture: book an escort, say please and thankyou and treat her with respect.
And on that note, may I politely request you not make me part of your sexual fantasy? If you do, I’ll make fun of you on this blog and the next one gets their screenshot put here for all to see:

β€œHello. I’d like to book you for a photoshoot- my wife also models so could it be a duo shoot?”
β€œOf course! What would you like to shoot? Do you have a link to your work and your wifes portfolio? I’d love to say hello before we shoot.”
This is followed by a stash of terrifying photos resembling Ann Summers vomiting all over Scunthorpe Swingers Night.
No, mate. No.

The problem is, the GWCs give the newbies a bad name and that’s not fair.
I’m happy to work with new people so long as they are genuine (and most professional models can tell newbies from chancers a mile away)! I wouldn’t be here as a full time professional model if photographers hadn’t given my curvy brown-haired two-photoshoots newbie ass a chance even though I didn’t know what implied-nude meant. I’m grateful to the people who did give me a chance and I’m happy to pay that forward.

Look at my innocent little FACE!!! Photo by Darkest Angel, in 2006!!!
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Now, if you have managed to get through this entire blog, grouch, very old photo of me and all, have some more pictures!πŸ˜‰
There are from a long time ago but I just rediscovered them. Photographer Chris was also new to the hobby but he came with glowing references so of course I hopped on a plane and spent two days in Spain shooting latex! I do rather love my job…πŸ˜‰

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And as his lovely wife also modelled too (but not for Scunthorpe Swingers Night) she made a guest appearance in ‘the medical room’! HOW cool??!
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Next blog, I have some very special ‘off duty’ shots to show you. For now, it’s time to get the acrylic paints out again…

ROSWELL xxx

Staying flat

25 Jun

Well, I’m alive.πŸ˜‰
For various reasons I’ll go into as soon as bloggily possible, I’m currently stuck on my back like an accident-prone tortoise. I’m not yet ready to log into my modelling websites and return to booking work though I will be in the next few days. For now, I’m supposed to be resting, which does not come naturally to me! (For evidence, please see this typing window on my laptop, the paused film in the background, costume making stuff in the corner and two open books right next to me.)
I keep falling asleep with virtually no warning, which is a very strange experience. Last night I started making a lovely nutritious huevos rancheros but didn’t have the energy to continue it, so everything got turned off at 9pm and now I have a saucepan of redundant tomatoes and onions to rinse out.

And then I woke up to find that my travelling life may well be about to come to an abrupt halt thanks to Brexit! I started todays blog on a whim so won’t go too in-depth politically but needless to say, as a self-employed woman working throughout Europe, with many European friends, I was firmly on the ‘remain’ side. I can’t do much evaluating of my career- or indeed any of this right now- but it does scare me when I hear people interviewed (and on the street) saying “I just don’t understand what we’re actually voting for…”

Right now, the sun reflecting off the water is making patterns on my ceiling and a swan family with seven cygnets came to say hello… then flounced off when no ginger biscuits were forthcoming. I’d love to get up and make my room spotless, do a bit of mindful colouring, finish a painting, start another and draft my next three blogs while peacefully meditating… all in the next hour. But I doubt that’s happened for anyone!πŸ˜› The best compromise I can make is finishing my book and considering the merits of washing up.

Every day has been better than the last for me though, so I’ll be back properly, eloquent-ish and sleepless in no time.πŸ˜‰ If you are interested in my next tours, I’ll be in Cambridge/Norfolk at the end of July and the South Coast at the end of August. Mail me ASAP and I’ll respond when I’m up and about again.

ROSWELL xxx

p.s. have some pictures of me taken in Belgium, by Kinkystyle. I fel a bit like this now, lol!

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The night before.

16 Jun

I’m doing something scary tomorrow.
Now, I’m at The Mothership. It’s nearly nine p.m. and it isn’t even nearly dark yet. My cat’s getting braver by the day and has ventured outside even after the growling tree-crackling storm just an hour ago. I miss his silly, insistent affection even though he walks across the keyboard when I write.
I’m sore across my chest from yesterday’s workout and comfortably full of baked beans and bacon. Not the best thing for my diet exactly but damn it, I love bacon and tonight I needed some kind of treat. I’d have liked company, a film and a game but the diaries didn’t align this time. So I’m doing my last emails for the next few days. Seeing my last pieces of the internet. And Netflix- can’t forget Netflix… I’m strictly offline until next week.
The windows are narrow in this room so I’m looking at little slices of sky and tree, with glittering crystals from the reflection of a lampshade. Birds, too. Mog- stay off them, there will be tuna in your bowl when you come in…

Back on the boat, my windows are open to air the place. There are fresh vegetables in the fridge. The water tank is topped up. I changed the sheets on the bed. Things I won’t want to do when I arrive home tomorrow night. Over here, my yellow polka dot mug’s empty but I’m too cosy to go all the way downstairs for the kettle and anyway, stubbornness is keeping me at the emails. Admin first, then film and coffee. The glad, whimsical little thought occurs to me that I am grateful my only dilemma right now is “Natural Born Killers” or “Maleficent”.
Especially when this year has seen some of the nastiest, most shocking, desperately sad things I have ever seen crammed into six months. If anyone’s listening, please stop it. I started watching The Supervet to remember all of the good people still out there but then remembered I’m not great with scalpels and (real) gore… and had to laugh at myself for thinking that was a good idea.πŸ˜€ Considering the unrest, the emotional whirlwind the world seems to be in right now, outside is silent and as still as the storm earlier was violent. And that reminds, me- I’m doing something scary tomorrow…

Scary doesn’t mean bad, by the way. This is good, and exciting, and progressive, but until it’s over then everything else is holding its breath with me. There’s something new I’m doing- a project that I’m waiting to launch but that has to wait, for now.
I have about a million things to say and tell you. Adventures in the pipeline and pictures to show you, but those are stories for another time. Right now, some ‘old’ photos by Steve Prue that I never showed you. Sadly the only set I ever saw from this shoot…
Given my style these days, they could have been taken yesterday.

Wish me luck- all will be revealed…

ROSWELL xxx

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p.s. look at my leg

7 Jun

I’m ba-aaaaaack!πŸ˜›
I have so many things to tell you about and show you! Firstly though, my Scotland tour is almost completely booked up now but if you would like to see my remaining days, check here: http://purpleport.com/castings/175005/Available-in-Edinburgh–very-last-days—-/

OR… reserve a spot for my October tour! I’m a hardy model and not afraid to come back to Scotland in the Autumn. Though it’s still a long way away, this tour has already got a lot of interest and I am happy to book as far in advance as you would like. So far, I’m looking at the 7th-16th.

Last time I was in Scotland I helped make these awesome images with Martin Photo!
We were aiming for strange sculptural shapes rather than a pretty ethereal fairy look- which was a great challenge! I just love the sky in the first shot.
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I mentioned in my last blog that I was looking at ways to better manage my time and though I’m still pretty atrocious at it, I am getting better. I’ve even found time to work on this lovely owl! One more day of work and he’ll be done.
(If you want to see more of my art stuff or commission something, contact me here- and please like the page!)πŸ™‚
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I’ll write a blog all about wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff once I’ve finished a ‘perceptions of beauty’ article that I’ve been putting off.πŸ˜› And finished another chapter of my book (Robin Hobb’s Liveship Traders trilogy. Really really good!)

The weekend went in a fast-paced sequin-filled blur as I was a bridesmaid for the first time! I held a bouquet of cacti, ate a cake made of cheese and chilled with my fellow bridesmaids who all rocked in different ways. The bride was photographer Kitty Wood (Now Morris) and I’ll tell you about the wedding and everything in a later blog as I’m collecting pictures first, but as I’m able to shoot in my bridesmaids dress as of right now, I thought you’d like to see it! Look at this beauty…
(I’m happy here, honest- just concentrating on keeping the phone still!)
My hair and make-up was done by Liv Free, who I cannot recommend any more highly!
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Looking through my recent blogs, I love to see the differences I can create in look and styling, especially as I seem to be getting booked for fashion work a lot these days. I’m not sure if it’s something to do with the plus size model movement (I’m aware I am not fat but I am very curvy which is unusual for a fashion model) or if a particular shoot or two have inspired photographers. Either way, it’s been fun to shoot!

I worked with one of my absolute favourite photographers recently, in an atmospheric warehouse/studio in Birmingham. When John Duder and I work together, we always get something beautiful and unusual and this shoot was an especially productive one.
Look at these!
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The beaded dress was from a charity shop (!) and the neon bodysuit is by one of my sponsors, Yummy Gummy.

We shot some ghostlike art nudes- look behind me- my shadow’s alive! There’s a hilarious ‘surrealist’ shot I’ll post at the bottom that failed so hard it won.πŸ˜€
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Then I got to be a latex superhero! If this was a film, it would be a badass training montage.πŸ˜‰ The Mad Max style shoulderpiece and net leggings are by Yummy Gummy, the top is by Jane Doe.
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And then we turned on the colour! I love playing with make-up. This look is by Make-up Revolution, which is cruelty-free! I really like the angles and perspective the stairs give.
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I need to take a couple of weeks off this month so I’m sure you’ll get bombarded with my blabberings soon enough but for now, I have sewing and gluing to do.

Oh, by the way… if you’re sick of hearing me going on about Sons of Anarchy, good news… I’ve started watching Orphan Black.πŸ˜›

ROSWELL xxx

p.s. Look at my LEG!!! It’s taken itself for walkies!πŸ˜› HAHAHA!!!
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p.p.s. Tales from the Mogosphere…
There is a shed in the garden with a cat flap so I has shelter. I hate cat flaps so I sits out in a storm. I is soaking wet and mummy rubbed a towel on me and felt guilty. Thunder is scary and rain is horrid. But the cat flap is eeeeeevil…
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Magic and mystery tours!

19 May

My next steampunk mystery is set in Newgrange… so I’m going again next week! Before that, it’s a dinner with one of my best girls who happens to be in Belfast at the same time as me, followed by a day trip to the Giants Causeway! Excited doesn’t begin to cover it.πŸ˜›

As I’m going to be gone for a week, I wanted to squeeze a quick blog post in before I leave you. There is also some news I’m sitting on but I can’t tell you yet and it’s driving me bonkers. I’m sure you all hate it when people post cryptic statuses like this on facebook but it’s my blog and I’ll hint if I want to.πŸ˜‰

I’m almost completely booked up for the next few months but if you are based in SCOTLAND, I will be there mid-July and am available for bookings. So far, I can go anywhere so if you’d like to book me just get in touch here:

Photographer “Here’s Johnny” and I got this awesome location shot last time I visited!
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Last year, back in England, I rented a gorgeous little log cabin near the Lee Valley and shot in the nearby forest for a few days. It was a lovely experience and something I certainly intend to do again. (Possibly in Autumn when the leaves turn!) I promised myself I’d post these fairytale inspired images as soon as it was Spring again and as the hawthorn blossom is truly out again, here are some pictures by Power Imagery. The long rust-coloured dress is by Falcieri Designs.
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We were slightly nervous when about three troops of Brownies passed by but luckily my dress doesn’t look so sheer from a distance, lol!!

As a pagan, there are a good few kinds of tree that are sacred (including oak and hawthorn, which you can see in the pictures above!) In fact, there is a ‘birth tree’ for everyone depending on the time of year you were born. I’m a hazel, which is associated with wisdom, apparently.πŸ™‚ If you want to look it up, it is called the Ogham and there’s a little guide here.
We got the happy little outtake below as I realised yet another special tree was above my head. (holly!)
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It’s past my bedtime now as I have a flight to catch, so goodnight everyone!

Writing to you from The Mothership, where Mog snores lying inconveniently all over my stuff…

ROSWELL xx

P.S. I’m coming back to Scandinavia in August! If you’re based in Norway or Sweden and would like to be kept updated with my plans, let me know.πŸ™‚

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