Tag Archives: urbex

What do models wear?

17 Feb

Also:
– Why we look like bag ladies on the tube in the morning
– How we get designers to lend us stuff
– Why we often look nothing like the way you imagined us!

Well, as you seemed to like my ‘what models eat‘ blog so much, I decided to address another few questions I get asked a lot! πŸ™‚

If you don’t care, scroll down for some insane outfits in incredible locations. πŸ˜‰
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Glamour models often arrive fully made-up because as the preferred ‘look’ can be very samey, she knows what the client wants and can arrive ready to shoot immediately. Otherwise, most models are told to arrive as blank canvasses, whether we’re agency-represented or freelance. This means that the sleepy make-up free, scraped-back hair-ed, baggy-trousered suitcase-dragging creature you see at 6am on the tube may well be a model in disguise!
No matter whether we’re fashionable, alternative, pretty and girly or any other style you can think of, the professionals (especially nude and lingerie models) will arrive in baggy outfits because they don’t leave marks on the body, saving the photographer time in photoshop.

Before and after… SIX YEARS AGO!!! I was modelling for the gone but much-missed HMSlatex.
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You know when you walk straight past somebody because they aren’t in the place you associate them with? (e.g. walking straight past your karate instructor because they aren’t in whites with a black belt?) I’ve found tying my hair up is the perfect disguise! I’ve lost count of the people who have mailed me saying “I thought I saw you but wasn’t sure…” Another model friend swears by the “Felicity effect”- wearing glasses = incognito! πŸ˜›
This is Felicity Smoak in Arrow. The glasses are to show you she’s a geek because all geeks on TV must wear glasses. πŸ˜› She takes them off and- boom- different person. Apparently.
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This is why we look different to the way you imagine us:
It’s funny how often I find that photographers know models from one particular style we shoot, with no idea about the others! (It seems the art-nude and fetish worlds rarely cross paths.) As my art-nude pictures are often ethereal, classically beautiful and pre-Raphaelite inspired, some people can expect a long-skirted romantic to come skipping along.
*sound of New Rocks stomping down the train platform*
The same happens with many of my model friends known for certain looks they do very well- it’s a facet of their personality that they love to express and they’re not only versatile on camera but choose another facet to show off in their everyday world.

Instagram models are a different story as they mostly make a living from their sponsors and advertising. (I wrote a whole blog about the way that works here) That means they have to keep things as consistent with their projected image as possible. It seems like a very easy lifestyle, getting paid simply to take a selfie, but in my opinion there’s far more pressure on Instagram models than freelance models, as even their personal lives have to remain ‘on brand’. Often, what they wear is what they’re paid to wear- and that’s why they’re usually more recognisable in the street than other models.

I’m currently sponsored by Yummy Gummy latex, Orchid Corsetry and Louise Ferdinand Lingerie. Pictures below are Yummy Gummy and Louise Ferdinand- you’ll see Orchid Corsetry later in this post. (Yes I’ve lost weight- the bottom picture was a few years ago, the top was a few months ago).
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Photo by Proteus Photography
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I once read a rant from a very famous and now retired fetish model, who was sick of new models contacting her asking which photographers pay and which designers lend clothes for free.
“You know what they’re saying to me? I don’t want to work for anything so just give me money and clothes!”
It’s hard as a new model to know where to start and I can understand the temptation to ask more experienced models for all the information but professional models build up working relationships over a long period of time. If you’d like to work with a designer and work towards sponsorship, this will give you a good chance:

1) Prepare your portfolio
Have a lot of good quality pictures that would persuade a designer you are worth working with. If your first shoots are all basic fashion from your own wardrobe, that is no problem at all as long as you look good in them, but think about who you approach. For example, a lingerie designer is unlikely to offer you work if you have no lingerie pictures.
Treat it like a job application. No “hey bayb, wanna shoot?”

2) Stick your neck out
Apply to casting calls for fashion shows and photoshoots. You’re more likely to have the trust of a designer if you’ve actually met them in person! If they have no castings, offer to pay a deposit (and pay it!) This shows you’re serious about taking care of the items. Though I have built a good reputation, I still offer to pay deposits.

3) Be reliable
Give designers your correct measurements. I’ve seen a true fashion show horror story or two! If they need the outfit back by a certain day, make sure it gets sent back in time. If the outfit is damaged, let them know straight away. Accidents happen, but pretending they didn’t and sending back a broken outfit is not cool.I’ve had mishaps myself and the designers appreciated honesty.

It’s always worth an ask- the least somebody can do is say no, and you could have a new and lovely working relationship! πŸ˜€

It takes a hell of a lot of trust to allow your model to not only borrow your outfit but take it out of the country and into a lot of grimy overgrown places covered in dust, so thankyou so much to Orchid Corsetry, Dead Lotus Couture and Cyberesque for letting me do just that last year.
I worked with photographers Magpie Tommy, James Kerwin and fellow model Jade Stacy Maria in Belgium on an urbex tour. You’ve already seen the nudes, so here are the rest of our shots! Photos are watermarked with the credits.

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I love the way different photographers can produce totally different images in the same location. Tom’s is above, James’s are below. Jade and I are wearing Dead Lotus Couture.
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We didn’t think we were going to manage this incredible castle location but after a couple of adventures and an uphill scramble, here we were! I’m wearing Orchid Corsetry with a veil made by me. I haven’t forgotten to tell you the thrilling tale but for now, here are some pictures… πŸ˜‰
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We were running out of light and I really wish we’d had more time at the location below as there were so many more things I wanted to do! Another time perhaps… πŸ˜‰ Outfit by Cyberesque.
Apparently this bit is called “the rhino” but I think the structures look more like catfish…
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And my favourite shooting location of all! I loved the different places for very different reasons but as you all know my love of nature, this was an amazing place to be and to shoot. While Tom and James were shooting Jade, I sat taking close-ups of my own and pretending I was in another strange world. πŸ™‚
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I’m on a few new adventures this year and can’t wait to see where life takes me next. As for today, it’s been a productive one!
– I painted my doors
– Made a lovely smoked mackerel and beetroot salad
– Blogged (yay!)
– Recorded a short story I’m working on
– Am trying my hand at making chia seed pudding for the first time. Wish me luck! πŸ˜›

More adventures coming your way…

ROSWELL xxx

Dangers Untold and Hardships Unnumbered

19 Jan

I’d planned to post this blog another time but then we lost David Bowie and the title couldn’t be changed- it was too perfect. This is probably the worst time to admit I hate the song Space Oddity, but I did love Labyrinth even though I didn’t actually see it until I was eighteen. I watched it in a friend’s paint-splattered mystical box-room in art school halls of residence, where I was sleeping to avoid hearing the Bedspring Symphony next to my own room.
Why didn’t Sarah just leave the wailing baby and stay in Faerieland with Bowie??Β  (And could we have him back please, Death? We’ll give you Donald Trump…)

Anyway… I was in London a few days ago and I saw this genius advert for the Tate Britain.
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What a way to advertise an art gallery- no actual art, but an intriguing backstory. So much for a picture being worth a thousand words! Then I realised I not only knew the picture but had posed for an interpretation of another of Bacon’s Triptychs! I just didn’t know what they were about.
Here’s the one in the advert:
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And here’s the one I posed for, with the result underneath. The painter is Nelson Aquini.
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I found the original pictures creepy (that’s not a bad thing) but didn’t like or dislike them. Looking again and knowing what inspired them… I wouldn’t hang any on the wall but can appreciate the achievement as art: Bacon managed to paint what being consumed by horror and screaming grief feels like. Now, if only I could do that with words! πŸ˜‰

Another piece of art I like because of its backstory is “Rock Drill”, by Jacob Epstein, and it used to look like the picture on the right. It had begun as a celebration of the industrial age… and then the First World War happened. Epstein ripped the sculpture apart and worked in a more classical way from then on!
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I started thinking about some of my favourite pictures and the effort, pain and strange stories behind some of them. There are some I’ve blogged about before (check out “Death Becomes Her“, “Welcome to Rivendell” and “Adventures After Dark“) but of those remaining, these are probably my top three:

1) Girl on the Moon (photos by Calvato)
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Calvato had warned me that this spectacular several-storey gutted warehouse was full of dust. Not a problem at all- I had fun pretending to be an astronaut stomping in slow-motion sending up clouds around me (nobody ever said I was cool, okay?)… BUT as I was coming down with the flu, I was feeling like the lovechild of Gollum and a wet blanket. Yes, I wanted the desolate hunched-over look here but I’m not usually a fan of method-acting! I absolutely love the pictures even though I was bedridden, shootless and delirious for the next three days. I then realised an hour before my coach left for Berlin that I couldn’t find my keys. Cue lurching to the train station with a bad drawing and a “have these been handed in?” sentence courtesy of google translate.
MIRACLE: They were in the station and I got my coach. πŸ˜›

2) Face-Off (photographer is Chicproduction)
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This photo is from one of my first ever photoshoots!! I was nervous and my face was a little sore from a make-up artist’s insistent scrubbing at me the day before. When the (different, nonviolent) make-up artist for this shoot touched my face with her brush, my cheeks swelled up like a hamster’s!! Being new to modelling, this was the most catastrophic thing that had ever happened to me at a shoot. After a pep-talk from the very understanding photographer, we carried on and got THIS! Looking again, there is some Bowie in there, I swear… πŸ˜€ (and I learned not to let people scrub at my face.)

3) Miranda. (Photographer is Magpie Tommy, designer is Orchid Corsetry)
I’ll blog the whole set soon…
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I’m going to tell you the whole story in another blog but it entailed a 5am start, an army-style crawl through the bushes, two ticks, some broken French and the threat of capture. πŸ˜‰

Other times of course, shoots go as smoothly as possible, even outdoors in the cold. I was amazed that photographer Digital Caress had not only a Plan A, but B and C too when I worked with him during a trip to Holland. Plan A (a wildlife sanctuary and ruin) worked just fine though!
As usual, a story came into my head (another to add to the archive of plots) as soon as I picked the final shots to post here: A story about a person who had hidden from the end of the world. On emerging from the space she’d lived in, she found everything was dead and at a loss what to do, turned her back on the cold deadness around her and made the ruins beautiful in her own way until she felt the sun on the stones. Turning around, she saw one tree still in green and made her way to it, farewelling the rest of the world. She’d stay there, unmoving until something grew again…

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As my ‘flash fiction’ blogs tend to be very popular with you all, I’m writing some more. Stay tuned for mini-tales to accompany some of my pictures… πŸ˜‰

For now though, it’s 1am here in England and my hot water bottle calls!

Goodnight!

ROSWELL xxx

Tales of a Naked Girl

19 Jan

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How can I explain the pride I feel in my work? Immersed as I am in my job and its accompanying social circle, I forget that some people see a bimbo or someone with very little self-respect when they learn I’m a nude model. My jokes about public nudity and nitpicky remarks about bondage in films (β€œseriously, anyone could get out of that!”) aren’t ‘got’, and there’s an assumption that seedier things go on than I let on. The idea of reference checking and talk of ‘levels’ provokes a knee-jerk horror that such talk is necessary. But don’t we all assess the possible dangers our lives bring us? It isn’t that we think trouble is imminent but that we want to be ready in case: to expect the best but prepare for the worst.
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I’m immensely proud of my work! Perhaps even more so because I know that it will not last forever. I have no intention of modelling for the rest of my life and have another career plan in mind, but I cherish the best parts and memories this crazy life is giving me.

My job puts me in touch with creative people on a daily basis. I’ve learned about things outside my circle of interests because almost everyone I work with has a story. My three best ‘industry’ friends are the most different women you could imagine but each of them has taught me a new perspective on life, shared my adventures and brought me on theirs- and I met all three through modelling.
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I see the world! I’ll be forever grateful for the experiences this is bringing me, the people I’m meeting and the independence I’ve found. I’m not afraid to travel alone or not speak the language. If I’m stranded I can always find a way home or at least to safety. I’m confident in strange situations and have a pretty good ‘weirdo-radar’! I love to share my life with friends and fellow travellers, but also enjoy the peace a simple walk in a new place brings me.
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Concerning the ‘naked’ bit, I’m proud to have a healthy attitude to nudity- my body does not bring me shame merely by being uncovered.
More than this, nude figures have been used in art for centuries! I walk through the London galleries and see women like me, who have been immortalised for the world to look at forever, as art. I feel a kind of connection to these women- a hint of the camaraderie I find among other nude models.
In this digital age when something placed on the internet is there forever, I hope that our work will continue to inspire people, and that maybe in the far future when people are creating interactive holograms (!) or whatever, that modern nude models may feel that connection to me and the other old-fashioned ‘photo girls’. πŸ˜‰
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I’m a huge sci-fi/action/fantasy fan but always meant to write a blog about films concerning nude modelling, so here you go- an extra bit!

Calendar Girls
It’s a comedy with Helen Mirren, Julie Walters and Penelope Wilton, and is based on true events. A middle-aged Women’s Institute group raises money for charity by making a nude calendar- and creates scandal, of course.
The idea that modelling teaches a very linear view of what is beautiful is an easy assumption to make and to an extent, it’s true (you’re either thin and striking or curvy and sexy) BUT visiting galleries and meeting older nude models has taught me to see beauty another way. I know I won’t be able to make a living from modelling forever, but if someone wants to photograph me nude at age sixty, bring it on!
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Mona Lisa Smile
I don’t like Julia Roberts, but I love Maggie Gyllenhaal and Julia Stiles. Kirsten Dunst is there too, with a teeny look at Tori Amos and Jane in Breaking Bad before she went all junkie. πŸ˜› It’s about an art teacher in the 50s who tries to teach her very traditional students that the ‘lifescript’ is an option and not a necessity.
There isn’t much nude modelling, but there is a scene in which the teacher takes her students to see an abstract painting and says β€œI want you to consider it. You don’t have to write about it, you don’t even have to like it. What you do have to do is consider it.”
There will always be people who step back from me and my work because it’s outside their experience (and therefore comfort zone). That is what I want to say to those people.
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I Capture the Castle
The book is better and not so bloody soppyΒ  (I’m re-reading it right now) though the writing and interaction between the characters still makes me laugh. Romola Garai, Bill Nighy, Rose Byrne and Tara Fitzgerald are a bohemian family of artists living in a crumbling old castle in the 1930s. Bill Nighy’s character has dreadful writers block, while Tara Fitzgerald’s character is a nude artists model who is the breadwinner for the family.
Gorgeous styling- and it makes me want my very own nude modelling castle.
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Sirens
Saw it by accident when I was about eleven. Whoops…
By most accounts it’s pretty dreadful as a film, but there can be a sexy side to nude modelling and the feeling of being in a completely different (and bonkers) world. Hugh Grant (ugh) and Tara Fitzgerald (you again!) visit Sam Neill, who plays an artist living in Australia with his family and personal collection of models (Elle MacPherson, Portia De Rossi and Kate Fischer).
I’m dying to go to Australia and recreate the scene in the last five seconds of the film: four of the models are standing on a high cliff being siren-like while Australia stretches into the background looking all idyllic. On a multi-model shoot, the joking and debates around the dinner table are pretty standard- you have to be comfortable not just with your own body but everyone else’s- though generally we don’t get all sexy to embarrass the new girl. πŸ˜›
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Mrs Henderson Presents
I love you, Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins (even if I did kill you by accident). It’s based on a true story about a rich widow who buys a theatre and opens a vaudeville production featuring nude women and Will Young (who’s actually pretty good!) Beautiful wartime/vintage styling and costume design!
I watched a mini-documentary about the film the other day- the producers invited the β€œMillerettes”- the original nude artists from the Windmill Theatre- to be consultants and to tell their stories. Glamourous eighty year old women proudly said that they could still do some of the dances and reminisced over their show days together.
When I’m old and wrinkly and my tits reach my ankles, I want to be able to look back at my nude modelling days and be just as proud, on my sofa surrounded by cats and chocolate and my just-as-wrinkly nude modelling friends. πŸ™‚
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Roswell xxx

p.s. sneak preview at my next blog, in which I go on an adventure in a crypt with one of the UK’s best known “Adventure Photographers” πŸ˜‰ I’m being sewn into my dress…
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p.p.s. Photography credits (in order):
Gareth Byrd
Rares Pulbere
Jonasbee
Sylvie Blum
John Duder
Artrotika
Gregory Brown (x2)
Max Operandi
Charles Van Trappen
Rebecca Bathory

Urban Decay

14 Aug

So, earlier this year, I had another shoot with Magpie Photography (formerly G Haskew, but he couldn’t get used to people calling him ‘Gee’) πŸ˜› who is most known for his urban exploring and expertise in fence climbing with a camera strapped to his back . If you love abandoned buildings, freaky old houses and military facilities straight out of the X-Files, you really really should check him out.
Anyway, what I’m trying to say is that I’m not photoshopped into the locations below.

I’m wearing an awesome dress by Pandora Deluxe (red is my favourite latex colour!), a hat by who-the-heck-knows-on-ebay but I love it, and my trusty New Rocks. πŸ˜€

Oh, and of course I got naked. I love my job.

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I’m off today to see one of my favourite ladies, Anita De Bauch for giggles and yummy food. Hopefully, this will help cure my writers block! I’ve been working on my steampunk story… in fact, as the above pictures look a little steampunk and I’m feeling confident today, want to read the blurb??

Here you go:

Ellison Clare is a private investigator with an unusual firm. While his colleagues are investigating rogue scientists and keeping nameless things on the lower floors of the headquarters, Ellison’s obsession is arresting the conman Marius. One evening, Ellison arrives at the unveiling of the Indigo Glass- a machine Marius claims to have invented; a machine which can show departed souls. Suspecting that it is a ploy to part grieving people from their money, Ellison’s theory is shattered when he sees something he does not expect in the machine. Before he can investigate further, a shot is fired which kills Marius and destroys the Indigo Glass.
Ellison’s search for the truth about the man and the machine leads him to the socialites of The Dinium- where appearances can mask many things and scientists are revered above all… and the circus freakshow- origin of Marius’s ‘Marvellous Collection of Oddities’ and home of a woman afraid for her soul- Seraph Murcia: ‘The Demon Of The West’. *

* worry not- I haven’t gone all Twilight- it’s just her stage name. πŸ˜‰

I also want to say thanks sooooo much to the lovely person who sent me a gift from my wishlist!
HOWEVER…
I don’t know who you are, Mr or Mrs X! Can you send me a message with your name and mailing address please, as well as telling me what the gift was- so I can send you a little present in return?

I think that’s all for today, as I’d like to get ten minutes of yoga in before I go. πŸ™‚

Speak to you soon!

ROSWELL xxx

The Covergirl and the Resistance

22 Jul

HOORAYYYYYYYY!!!!!
A happy Roswell is back in the UK (though flying out to Ireland again tomorrow.) I’m very excited to tell you I am on the current cover of Alternative Revolution magazine, with a two page spread and interview inside!
You can buy your very own copy by CLICKING THIS LINK.

Check it out!!

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It was one of my New Year’s Resolutions to have at least two covers and three features- I have the first cover, three features and as for the second cover… well, I don’t want to jinx it so I’m keeping quiet about that… πŸ˜‰

I had such a wonderful time in Europe this year- in fact, best Eurotour ever! I have so many pictures to show you, including the new bondage pictures that so many of you have mailed to ask me for… I’ll put my trip into a proper order when I return on Saturday and then normal blogging can commence, but as I couldn’t wait to show you these, here you are!
I think I look like I’m hiding from some kind of steampunk-y danger in this factory and trying to get the place working again, before being captured. Hence the second part of my title. πŸ˜€

Photographer: Calvato
Make-up/hair: Me, using products from Factory Floor. Shade: Dirt

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The factory I was in is probably one of the most awe-inspiring locations I have ever worked in. It is a rare occasion that a place makes my jaw literally drop (yes, I do mean ‘literally’ here, not ‘virtually’) but this place did it. It’s over five storeys high and towers over the little town next to it. There were hares running around the wood surrounding it and at one point, I could hear distant bells from somewhere nearby. Half of a wall was missing and through the giant gap, I could see forest, tall neon signs and factories blowing steam- I felt as though I had stepped into a videogame or sci-fi art book.

My cameraphone pictures will not do it justice, but I’m going to try anyway with a few ‘behind the scenes’.

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Quote of the day:
“Other photographers often contact me asking how I got the dirt effect on my models. Um… it’s DIRT!”

And yes, it certainly is. πŸ˜›

I’m putting together a selection of pictures that I will then sell as prints and I’m certainly planning on doing a pack of three of these ones so if there are any you would particularly like as prints, let me know and I’ll bear it in mind. πŸ˜€
I’m slacking on my German lesson at the moment so in between packing, I’m off to practise for my next trip to Berlin (and possibly a few other cities too) in November…

I hope you’re enjoying the sun here, or if you’re like me and hate the heat, I hope you’ve found a shady spot with the icy-cold snack of your choice.

Speak to you when I’m back!

ROSWELL xxx