After the long build up and stress of gaining access to land; making the costumes; organising my models, photographer, and assistants; and worrying about the weather, the day finally came. That day was Friday. The skies threatened to pour in the morning which had me worried about the safety of the expensive video camera I had rented from my university but it came to nothing more than a drizzle and the temperature wasn’t too cold for a December morning (although my poor models would disagree). I got started early so as not to take up too much of my helpers day meeting just after sunrise to gain the best light for this time of year.
The night before the shoot myself and my amazing Granddad went to the site of my fashion film, the Stack Leisure Park, to mark out the land. As mentioned in a previous post, my aim was to spray the footprint of the jute mill that once stood there and this would act as a stage/catwalk for my models. We used string and rocks to mark out the shape and then sprayed on the inside of the string with white chalk spray. Thankfully the rain stayed off during the night and the footprint was still in tact for filming the next day.
9am Friday morning finally came so I set off with my video camera, still camera, two tripods, ladders and my amazing crew. Modelling my costumes were fellow fine art students Kate Forbes, Shannon Murray and Rebecca Etchels. My photographer was textiles student Aimee Keatch and also on hand to assist was my Mum, Gran and Granddad. Once the cameras were set up and in position I got the models in their costumes and started filming straight away so they did not need to be out in the cold for too long. Firstly I had the girls walk around the white lines as if they were on a catwalk.
I brought ladders and a towel to get both low and high shots and put myself in the centre of the lined area to pan around the girls. I had the models dance and make big gestures to catch the attention of those walking past.
The lone standing gate was the backdrop that framed the busy retail environment surrounding the empty land on which my film was being shot. Shoppers in cars, buses and on foot looked on as the models strutted, posed and danced on the land. Some pedestrians even stopped to watch for a few minutes before carrying on with their day. My photographer Aimee took both behind the scenes photographs as well as stop motion images that will be used in my film. The girls posed in a dramatic, high-end fashion style again attracting attention to the themselves and the land.
I also brought a prop for the girls to use, shaving foam. This medium has been used in a lot of my work this semester and even on the costumes that the girls were wearing. I wanted to add a fun aspect to the shoot through the use of this prop. The girls ran around the marked lines spraying each other with foam and seemed to enjoy it a lot which came across in the film.
It was cold and stressful but it was fun. All of the planning for the shoot and it was over in less than 2 hours but I am very happy with the photographs and the videos and believe this to be a successful shoot. The main idea of the shoot was to fill the empty void of this land with my models and to get people who would normally walk past this land without a second glance to take notice of the strange emptiness in this urban environment. The stressful part is over but now the hard part begins, editing the film. I hope to make the film visually exciting while holding onto the theme of the void and highlighting the emptiness of this urban land.