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Chicago (the Musical) Inspired Portraits

Every now and again I like to do some portraits for personal growth. I use this time to try new things and to just have fun in the studio. Ashleigh is one of my daughter's dance teachers and someone who helped me come up with posing ideas for Kenzie when she modeled for me on the Bowens stand at the Photography Show back in March. So I thought why not invite Ashleigh in to do some dance portraits for her. And this is what we came up with.

Ashleigh not only teaches but still performs regularly and is currently preparing for this season's Panto down south. So when it came to her portraits we wanted something that both suited her style and would lend itself well to something a little dramatic. The first thing that came to mind for Ashleigh was Chicago. So some searching online for inspiration and this is where it got us.


My vision involved black and white, high contrast, spot lights and smoke. Seeing as it was my first time using smoke pellets I have to say I am quite pleased with the results and I will definitely be using them again. It did however make the studio rather smoky and meant we needed to take a short break to let the smoke clear a little before carrying on. In fact it probably took several hours in order to clear completely. But what a difference the smoke made. I love it.



In the image above I'm reminded of a smoky jazz club and I must say it was exactly the look I was going for. We were initially unsure about adding the hat but again I feel it works so well. It really seemed to help Ashleigh get into character for her role in these portraits.


As usual, when I have someone in who says they play guitar I have to suggest they bring it in for some photos. I love the look a guitar of any sort adds to the images and this one was beautiful. Dark wood has such an appeal to me so this one was perfect. 


I choose to keep these portraits in colour, partly to due to my love of dark wood and partly to keep these separate from the Chicago style images. 


As I've said so many times before, variety really is the spice of life. This session gave me just what I needed and I hope to do many more that challenge me as this session has. If you've been after something a bit different please do get in touch. The possibilities are endless and who knows what wonderful work we can come up with. 

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