Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Weds 23rd Dec: Elisha Smith-Leverock Interview

Elisha hardly needs an introduction here as one of my most prolific co-conspirators and imagists. Elisha is responsible for both my moving and still work of which the latest has just been launched in the format of my look book. In just one day Elisha shot the whole of my collection into a set of prints that I couldn't be happier with. This is it. She has catalogued the whole thing in the most beautiful way that gave me goose pimples as they individually materialised before my very eyes. So without further a-do, I hand you over to an initial interview to find out a little bit about how her vision was accumulated and cemented:

*  For more exclusive images from the shoot go to a new article on the collection at Dazed

1) When did you first pick up a camera and how did it come about?
I decided one day out of the blue that photography was it for me without even ever having really picked up a camera. It seemed instantly accessible to me although getting to a point where I was happy with the outcome wasn’t easy or instant at all.

2) What model camera was your first love and what was the first image you took that you were most proud of............a turning point?
My first true love was my Haaselblad before that I was infatuated with my Olympus mju. I used to take her everywhere and I have extensively documented the nightlife of electro era Berlin. I’m planning to exhibit those pictures at some point.
But the turning point for me was my final project at schooI, a series of portraits of female guitarists. I finally found my style and it got published in full by Bon Magazine.

3) You now use a HassleBlad...........why is that your weapon of choice?
The Hassleblad I use is special to me not only because Hasselblad's are excellent cameras, it’s the camera I have been using since I was a student. It’s vintage from the 60's and my dad acquired it as a gift to me form a pawn shop in D.C.. It’s now like an old friend because I know it inside out. Unfortunately I am sometimes forced to use digital nowadays, shame.

4) You are also a keep Polaroid'er............. how do you decide what event/subject requires that medium..........how do you keep all these portraits.......any plans for an exhibition?
I love Polaroid I like to use it when I want to add some softness to a subject. I also like the fact that you get some thing special, unique and non-reproducible. Of course you can scan it but that’s not the same.
I chuck them all in a drawer -I’m not very neat. Sometimes my medium format ones will still be wet and the chemicals will cause them to stick together then I get really interesting results. I think they will all make for a great exhibition or a book one day.

5) Whats your favourite Polaroid you've taken and why?
My favorite Polaroid is a beautiful black and white double exposure of a girl in a garden with a horses tail. I love it because it’s very ghostly.
6) Your signature style is making magic using natural sunlight. Where would you most like to shoot in the world if Conde Nast gave you an unlimited expenses trip to a location of your choice to shoot?
Marfa Texas no doubt.

7) You have quite a feminine soft touch to your aesthetic which is very refreshing. Which other female photographer's work do you admire and why?
This is a tough question because all my favourite photographers are men and the type of photography I like to look at might not necessarily reflect in my style. I must say I do love Harley Weir her work is inspired.

8) You spent time in Berlin before settling in London. Can you tell us a pro and con for working/living in each city?
I’m afraid I’m not impartial on this one because I’m German and I really miss the food and being close to my family. My time in Berlin was really fun and as mentioned I documented a lot of it. I think things have changed there tough and it seems a lot more settled. London has always been exciting and exotic to me but I could do without the completely extortionate cost of living.

9) At that time you were also a musician?! A large portion of your film work is within music video. What would be your dream project past or present? (e.g Jimi Hendrix Foxy Lady...........)
I would like to go back in time and do a video for my band Disco Arms Disco Legs. We had a massive radio hit with a song called ‘David Has Chlamydia’

10) We have ventured into fashion film together had a great time in doing so! Recently Chris Cunningham has made a beautiful advertisement for Gucci perfume and Jean Pierre Jeunet for Chanel No.5..........what brand / product would you like to get your hands on?
As you yourself once suggested Fred, I really do think we should do something for Swarovski together. It would be so lush!

"Hibiscus Ridiculous" S/S 2010
Photographer: Elisha Smith - Leverock
Stylist: Kim Howells
Hair: Aimee Robinson using Phyto
Make Up: Yin Lee @ Premier using MAC pro
Stylist Assistant: Reuben Esser
Hair Assistant: Brady Lea
Models: Ashleigh @ Profile
Petter Anderson @ D1
Body Suits: Sarah Magnay

Tues 22st Dec: Happy Christmas/New Year/Birthday/Thankyou Susie Bubble

Here is what you get for being a staunch ambassador for fredbutlerstyle.............and a generally lush soul...........like Susie Bubble.   An elephant never forgets........and I will never forget the few people that helped discover me and helped to spread the word..........so I like to keep the karma flowing and those angels in good stead with some of my samples.  
Thank you to Jessica Meek for helping me with the accessories for SHOWstudio by making a) these necklaces b) the boxes c) sticking letters to my latest look-books d) hand delivering them...........which I will cover in an imminent post........watch this space........

Tues 22st Dec: Christmas Shopping Ideas...........

Here's Fred with a quick reminder.............you can purchase the special accessories that I made to decorate the tree over at SHOWstudio this year............read more via the Vogue.com or Disney Roller Girl......

Tues 22st Dec: Happy Christmas from........ Part 3

Annie Collinge

Monday, 21 December 2009

Mon 21st Dec: Happy Christmas from........ Part 2

Clare Shilland

Mon 21st Dec: Happy Christmas from........ Part 1

Peter Jensen
Chrissie Abbott

Mon 21st Dec: Bishi loves Rosy Part 2

Here are a few snippets from the whole process I captured on the livestream by pressing Apple+Shift+4 many, many times!  I was so proud and excited to watch Rosy meeting Nick, and Bishi twirling and twizzling for a spectacular shot.........that has made the SHOWstudio homepage today!  Its such an awesome way to end the decade by having the moment bottled into a definitive scent that will stick forever on the pages of i-D.  On a personal note its been an overwhelmingly magical experience to be amongst friends who have all been included and to have our moment of celebration cemented in this way.  So, so lucky!   Really can't wait to see the final images!

Mon 21st Dec: Bishi loves Rosy Part 1

Yesterday saw the final day of Nick Knight's 100 portraits project for the 30th anniversary of i-D magazine.  At last count, he had tallied up 200 takes, with the very last sitter being himself for a self portrait!  
Here are some beautiful backstage shots of Bishi at the studio in Somerset House by Rosy Nicholas who is evidently obscenely talented in both making nice things and taking nice pictures!  Bishi commissioned Rosy to make a necklace and earrings for her slot in the scheme and Rosy rustled up this bling to adorn Bishi's Boadicea type Bustier.