My Calvin’s

So I did something a little different this week speaking in terms of content. Despite regularly modelling around the city- in the busy streets, at local cafes, and well-known parks, I’ve actually never spent that much time doing studio shoots. 

The first time I ever shot in a studio was my very first professional shoot I did in early 2018, with the head of photography at SFU. To my surprise, they found me through a geotag on Instagram linked to a photo of me taken outside of Strand Hall. It wasn’t long before they found my student number and shot me an email. 

I was so unbelievably new to modelling that I don’t really even count that as my first studio session. However, I would say that my first real go I had in a studio was last March. Although I was still new to the industry, I worked on the launch of the “Pretty Woman Collection” for Vitae Apparel. I was in a room with a bunch of beautiful models whom I had never met before and to be honest, I was nervous since I had never worked with that large group before. We all huddled together as the studio was extremely cold, but I soon made some friends as we shared our warmth. Out of the entire pool of girls, the photographer asked me to shoot first, and I was completely stiff. I’m used to shooting outside where I can manipulate my environment, so shooting in a studio where all eyes are on you was extremely daunting. As I was posing, the CEO and designer of the company, Selene came up to me and rubbed baby oil on my bum as she said, “Hi, I’m Selene. Don’t mind me.”  

Here I am nearly one year later, shooting in a studio with Nicolas Scott. Even with a year more experience under my belt, I still didn’t know exactly how to use my body and my face to sell the clothes I’m wearing. Studio work is very specific in the sense that you don’t get a background to play with, you are the one and only centre of attention and in order to do your job correctly, you need to sell what you’re wearing by using only your body and your face. I’ll be honest, it definitely wasn’t easy but I was excited to try something that was fairly new to me. Although I didn’t feel the pressure of being the main focal point in front of the lens, I felt less like myself. Although it was my entire physical being in those photos, I felt this mental pressure of trying to sell something, feeling the need to make it look good. In a way, I got into my head about what I was doing even though it was the exact same thing I do on a weekly basis. 

When I got the photos back later this week, I realized how far I’ve come in a year. Thinking back to my first product shoot in a studio, more awkward than I’ve ever felt in front of a camera, to now lounging in my CK underwear in a studio in North Vancouver overlooking the bridge… I would’ve never guessed that a year later I would still be creating, modelling and most importantly working with and meeting new creatives.

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