A couple of months ago I ran a promotion on my Facebook page, to win a day in the studio with me and my A-team. After a few weeks of lots of interest, we eventually pulled one name from a hat at random (at our Raggedy Ann shoot), the winner was a lady by the name of Sharon. With only a month to prepare we quickly decided on a Halloween themed shoot as the shoot was so close to Halloween. A few ideas were thrown around and we decided on the inspiration coming from the Tim Burton movie “The Corpse Bride”.
So off we went on a scavenger hunt, I tried to find a ‘new’ old wedding dress cheap, but ended up using an old one I had, what a morning that was distressing the dress. So picture me one nice sunny Spring morning wedding dress hanging from the washing line, I had a spray bottle full of coffee and a pair of scissors. Cut and rip, repeatedly on the bottom of the dress, good old (young) Dexter the dog thought this was lots of fun and help rip too. Then I liberally sprayed coffee over the dress…not grungy enough so I threw a few cups of VERY strong coffee at it. Still not grungey enough. Gave it to the dogs and we played in the dirt, roughed it up and dragged it around. Mmmm still not grungey enough. I then cleaned off the outdoor table of months of dust! Getting there! I then had an almost empty spray can of black paint and we went to town with that too…now the dress was dirty and disgusting and looked more like she had just crawled out from a grave! That poor dress is never going to be a pretty dress again, but it has had a VERY busy second life and possibly much more fun was had in it than the first time around! It’s been a wedding dress on several occasions, also a fairy, Game of Thrones Kahelisi, a goddess and a few other things as well.
As it is nearly Halloween creepy fabric, cobwebs and pumpkins are in abundance. As were the cat and dog skeleton and skulls. I picked up a new candelabra at a thrift store for a few dollars and Sharon (our guest) had one hiding in a back shed. The hair and makeup artist Emma carved two amazing pumpkin Jake-o-lanterns and I drew a face on mine. The last ingredient was smoke, I ordered in some more smoke emitters (bombs), a small white one which we set of IN THE STUDIO! OMG so funny and so much smoke…but very cool.
We then went to the park (after warning the neighbours) and set off a much larger blue and red smoke emitters, one while our model Jess sat in a tree. I am sure my neighbours think I am totally crazy!
We also had the smoke machine going pretty much no stop the whole shoot as well.
We started the body painting and makeup at 10am and Sharon and I set up the studio and arranged the props, after about 2 hours we then began to shoot…as there were two shooters we shot for a bit longer than normal, perhaps 2-3 hours and we had two different backdrops as well as the park. Moth came up to grab some shots at the park as well. So it was a long day, but loads of fun.
It certainly has been quite a Halloween fest for photos this year, I normally do something, but this year has been very busy, with still two more Halloween shoots to cover.