2016 was a busy year for me with both commercial and model photoshoots. As well as working with new clients, I was also involved in a few exciting collaborations. There's a lot to show you in this blog, so without any further ado, here's 'A Decade in Review' where look back at my favourite photoshoots and images from 2016.
Let us kick things off with a fantasy photoshoot collaboration with Lomography on a freezing cold January with model Lexi Lane and Makeup Artist Rachael Henighan.
Lomography kindly sent me their Petzval 85mm Art Lens to test as they thought my style of fantasy photography would really work well using their art lens and the swirly bokeh effect it can create. Even with low light conditions and a freezing cold day, you can see what amazing bokeh effects you can create.
To read my interview with Lomography and to see other images I had created, visit Lomographys blog https://www.lomography.com/magazine/321465-phil-jones-fantasy-art-photography-with-the-petzval-85-art-lens
I also used my Canon 70-200mm f2.8 lens to compare the results and to be honest, I wanted to be on the safe side as I hadn't shot with the Petzval lens before and as focusing was manual mode only I didn't want to not have any useable shots. It's better to be safe than sorry!
It still felt just as cold in April for my next Lomography Petzval Lens Collaborative shoot with Amber Boyden-Wilson and Makeup Artist Clare Bradshaw but at least the sun made the occasional appearance and colours were returning with the start of Spring.
The above shot is a combination of two images merged together, taken using the Lomography Petzval 85mm Art Lens.
In May 2016 I was contacted by actor and model Andrea Vasiliou who was looking to create some commercial lifestyle images for her portfolio. We arranged to meet at Laindon, Essex and had two hours before Andrea had to head back to London. It was an awesome shoot and turned out to be my first shoot of many with Andrea.
Andrea had just finished filming Wonder Woman in which she was an Amazonian warrior and as you can see was proudly wearing the T-Shirt!
In between shooting, I pitched an idea about a female assassin to Andrea to see if she would be interested in working with me. I'm pleased to say she loved the idea and was very excited to play the role. More of this to follow in 2017!
Throughout the year model, Grace Gray and I had kept in contact and we were keen to shoot together again but I'm pleased to say our clients were keeping us busy with other work. Late one August afternoon, we met to discuss a project I was hoping to shoot in a months time and create a selection of fitness and wellbeing images which Grace could send to her agents and I could sell through Shutterstock as Royalty-Free images.
Fitness images available to purchase from Shutterstock
Once we finished shooting the fitness set, Grace and I were keen to test a few ideas for a couple of shoots which we had coming up soon, but as always on a great shoot, another idea presented itself which I couldn't resist shooting. I've made lots of fun memories shooting with Grace over the years and her hiding amongst the flowers in a park garden border and bumping into an old school friend is just one of them.
Grace, like me, is a big fan of ethereal and fantasy imagery and we were keen to see if we could take the images one step further. Thanks to Paula, one of my wife's work colleagues, we were able to shoot with Smudge the horse.
You never know what weather you're going to get in this country and the morning of our Fantasy Shoot the skies were grey and threatening rain. We were hoping for slightly sunnier conditions but in hindsight, the clouds added to the drama.
Grace used to ride when she was younger and it's fair to say she was pretty damn excited to work with Smudge as was I.
Above: Composite image of Grace Gray as a strong female warrior.
After spending an hour shooting with Smudge, Grace and I moved locations to one of my favourite spots and I'm pleased to say the sun popped out which made for some awesome light. You may have already noticed I'd also managed to borrow a sword to use on the shoot and Grace always has alternative goth clothing not too far away!
You've guessed it, the model is Grace Gray but I make no apologies! Sometimes this happens, all the projects we plan to shoot either come through all at once or you realise you're running out of summer so we better get on with it.
Ma-Ga London promotes its watch and accessory brand as the edgier and darker Daniel Wellington and Olivia Burton, reaching out to the inked culture. My thinking was to introduce the Hot Rod and Custom Culture, who have always been synonymous with tattoos, with Ma-Ga London watches and accessories, at the same time combining my interests. They say 'shoot what you love', so what could be better?
The concept of the shoot was to portray the Hot Rod culture with a lifestyle photoshoot. Yes, its important at some stage to show the detail of the watch but this campaign is about showing your personality. Creating and building a Hot Rod or Custom is about being an individual, adding style and detail which makes your build unique and reflects your personality. The same ethos applies to Ma-Ga London - Create your own identity.
I've got say that the above images are some of my all-time favourite shots. Yet again the sun didn't really make an appearance but Grace and I still managed to create a selection of shots we are both thrilled with. The original images have come out fine but as soon as you commission a professional Hi-End fashion retoucher, the images are taken to the next level.
Below. Thanks to Neil Tadman for the use of his 1934 Ford Sedan
Below: Thanks to Hot Rod Ron for all his help and use of his Ford Model A's
You can read about this shoot on one of my earlier blogs https://www.philjones-photography.co.uk/blog/2016/10/commercial-watch-photoshoot
In October 2016, I was contacted by actor and model Grace Parry who was looking to create some ethereal styled images for her modelling portfolio. It goes without saying we had to get Grace Gray involved but this time as a makeup artist. As you can see by the images, this time we had an absolutely incredible day which I remember very well. It was the 31st October, and the low golden light was amazing.
The problem with shooting in the afternoon in October is when the sun decides to set it's gone in no time but hey, as true professionals and armed with a Canon Speedlite flash and Grace's mobile phone torch we created the image below. I remember at this time I was thinking of investing in the Profoto B2 location kit and this shoot helped me make the decision to add it to my kit!
Above: That's a lake in the background in case you were wondering.
If you're a keen photographer you may be interested in taking a look at my blog on how using a reflector can improve your photographs, you can also see a few more images from this shoot with Grace Parry.
You can also check out my video on YouTube which includes footage from my Fantasy and Hot Rod and watch shoot with Grace Gray.
Thanks for taking the time to visit, you can find me on social media at all the usual places
Rachael Henigham Instagram
Clare Bradshaw Twitter
Amber Boyden-Wison Instagram
Andrea Vasiliou Instagram
Grace Gray Instagram
Grace Parry Instagram
MaGa London Watches Instagram
Neil Tadman and Hot Rod Ron Facebook
I don't want you to miss out on the full A Decade in Review blog:
Part One 2010 Click Here
Click HERE to continue reading.