||Rolling with the BIG Dog
by Damian McGillicuddy
I guess I must be asked almost everyday by somebody, be it in person, letter
or email, 'Can I carry your bag and observe a shoot?' Sadly, nine times out
of ten, for one reason or another, the answer has to be no!
Whilst discussing the core training needs of the Societies with our shrewd
CEO, Mr Philip 'The real big dog' Jones, it was suggested by writing a
'photo essay' from one of my shoots for the magazine, then by default if
you’re brave enough to read my waffle, you’re brave enough to 'Roll with the
BIG Dog' and at least be there in spirit, and hopefully get an insight into
how I shoot and hopefully learn a bit. So, welcome aboard the first ride!
My brief for this commission was to shoot some high-quality, bespoke
corsetry in a beautiful yet aspirational manner that would stimulate the
viewer of the 'Ad' and echo the advertising strap line, 'What more do you
need'. I’m very fortunate to be given creative free rein on most of my
I was very fortunate indeed to be working on this project with one of my
favorite models, Laura Oldfield. As well as being beautiful and ever the
consummate professional, Lozie, comes with some attractive benefits! Firstly
as a young 'mover and shaker' she has an intimate knowledge of the
Manchester club scene, so that’s the location scouted. Secondly, if asked
nicely, she comes with her fantastic partner Steve. I’ve got to say he is an
absolute asset to have on a shoot, given my own way I’d have him on EVERY
shoot! Thirdly...she usually brings sandwiches...sorted!
As usual my 'glamourous professional life' comes with some heavy downsides.
We could have the venue (thanks Pure) but we were on a tight, time-limited
schedule. Everything had to be shot and completed, in the can and out the
door in three hours... smashing!
So onward and upward. As I’d not scouted the location for myself, the first
thing I did was wander round the venue, looking for those 'certain areas'
that inspire me to shoot. I knew I had three corsets to shoot so, in
essence, I needed three locations!
When I look for a location I’m invariably looking for an area with
interesting lines in and out, or depth. I try to select areas that have a
definite foreground, mid-ground and background, I tend to view the scene a
little like a movie director, with depth being of great importance. I always
try to remember the aim in what we do is to give the illusion of a 3D world
captured in a 2D image.
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