Saturday 19 October 2019

The Japes of Goth / Doom for manoeuvre / as you will

Most of the time on Specs, you'll find me writing about music and art ... but regular visitors will be familiar with another passion of mine, portrait photography. This is where I get to flex a few different creative muscles - so I feel it belongs on the blog along with everything else, the whole thing adding up to an online self-portrait of sorts.

One of the best things about focusing on portraiture is collaborating with friends who are willing to step in front of the lens. I've photographed Fliss and Tony, the subjects here, often: they're extraordinarily game, endlessly co-operative and - as experienced amateur actors - bring a whole host of ideas and, usefully, outfits to the enterprise.

This is the second shoot running (after my recent pictures of Suzanne here) where the day was far more loosely-planned and improvisational. I have in the past made meticulous location plans for sessions - and will no doubt do so again - but here we decided to wing it, relatively speaking, and aim for fast results in a small number of backgrounds. All I knew in advance was that they wanted to 'go goth' - which to me could embody a gloomy sincerity, or self-aware, slightly self-mocking melodrama... or all points in between. I'm pleased with these pictures: huge fun to do, and I like to think they convey the idea that 'dressing up and larking around' can be a serious business. I hope you enjoy them.

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