If someone had said to me 12 months ago that I would be out shooting a Vampire in a disused building, in the cold wind and rain, for free – I would have laughed at them. And why not, there I was sat in my nice warm comfortable studio, plenty of coffee, nice sofas and a steady stream of customers walking through the door wanting beautiful studio portraits – it was all too easy.
How could I have foreseen the circumstances that would mean I had to give up my studio. How could I have predicted the fact that people had no money to spend on “beautiful studio portraits” any longer.
Life can change, in an instant.
But that was twelve months ago.
So there I was, doing my “Social Media” rounds, I do these once or twice a day as time permits, and I saw a Facebook post from a model asking for a Halloween shoot on Sunday as the shoot she had planned fell through. This was Friday.
Well, I knew I was busy Saturday, but had Sunday free, so I thought, how difficult can a Halloween shoot be, and quickly offered my services.
Then it started to sink in. It was Friday, the shoot was on Sunday, I was out with the family on Saturday. I had no specifics to go with the theme, no location, no idea what I wanted the model to wear – and I also had the equivalent of “writers block”, my mind went totally blank.
On Friday night I was frantically searching Google for ideas along the Halloween theme and decided upon a “Vampire” themed shoot. After speaking with the model, we decided on going with the “Sophisticated Sexy” Vampire look that is shown in many TV shows rather than the more traditional blood & gore look.
But as always, things don’t go quite as planned.
The light in the room was wrong, the light outside was wrong, the cape we bought for some sophistication was wrong, in fact, twenty minutes into the shoot we very nearly gave up and went home, wet cold tired and thoroughly fed up.
Sometimes being a photographer you have to just “step back” and have a look around, it’s ok to change the theme, it’s ok to change your ideas, if something is not working, why persevere.
So we changed it around, we went for the more “traditional Vampire” with a bit of blood & gore, we moved location, I rummaged in my bag and found a small tube of fake blood and it all started to come together.
We started out with a wailing Vampire.
Moved onto a “coming out of a crypt” look, with the model crawling through a hole in the wall which was pretty tricky but we managed it quite well.
And we finished up by utilising a kitchen knife that we had bought along “just in case”. This shot has a very “dark” feel to it and is not to everyones’s taste. But I liked it, quite gritty.
Fangs were added in Photoshop – nice & easy with the warp tool.
So all in all, aside from the cold and the wet apart from a few hiccups it went ok.
Best – Colin