Define work…

If you spend a day in a pool with 2 lovely models and a talented MUA Kim Gainer, can you call what you do work?  YES, it’s harder then you think.  Most are not experienced underwater models or free divers, some don’t even swim.

This was my third time working underwater with model Vettriano.  We shared a few laughs with “new to underwater” model Che about her first attempt.  The allure for these models is to add something unique to their portfolios.  So Che wanted to try.  Her 5’11” frame made working in the deeper end a cinch.  In the beginning, she had difficulty, puffing out her cheeks when holding her breathe.  She also forgot that she couldn’t wipe the water from her eyes because of the make-up.  Kim was on hand for touch ups.  She created tropical fish looks for the eyes.  The colors popped because of Che’s beautiful skin tone.

I used a royal-ish blue satin for the backdrop.

 

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Vettriano
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MUA Kim and model Che
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Che started to feel more comfortable towards the end of our session.  She even slipped in a smile.  And is up for another shoot.

Praying for sunny days so I can schedule more models…

Mary

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Filed under Life under water, fashion, photography, underwater photography

What makes a model great?

Is it her/his beauty, grace or willingness to give a 100+ percent to the project.  I’m sure many of you have watched “America’s Next Top Model”  Tyra and her team go to great lengths to not only bring out their beauty and poise but to push the envelope.  Many scenarios put them in precarious positions high above, dangling from wires to get that “money” shot.  It’s their determination and fierceness that sets them apart as they complete for a title and successful career.

Basically, its the reason I work with models who have never done underwater shoots before.  It’s a collaboration.  Our goal is the same – to create beautiful, memorable images together – a stepping stone to careers, but more importantly – to be creative.

Raiza doesn’t swim, but she knows what it takes to give me some really cool underwater visions.   It was her vivacious enthusiasm that caught my attention when she answered my casting call on Model Mayhem

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All images are the copyright property of the artist Mary Durante-Youtt

She previewed my underwater series and did some homework on her own via the internet to get a better understanding of poses.  (think ballet)  My only directions or instructions to Raiza was to relax her face, remember to keep her arm from blocking her face, take a breathe, exhale and let her body sink beneath the surface.  Later she confessed that she was surprised she was able to keep her eyes open without looking forced.

She makes it look easy.

Can’t wait to get back in the water again.

Mary

 

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Filed under photography, underwater fashion, underwater photography

Summer time…

My favorite season is when the pools open and the weather turns warm and sunny.  Yesterday was my first underwater shoot of the season.  YAY!!!

Another collaboration with a talented MUA, Gabby and a lovely young model, Raiza.  Unfortunately Gabby couldn’t join us at the pool because of prior commitments, another time perhaps.

Raiza, although not a swimmer, was up for the challenge and put aside her fears of being in the deep end because she thought the concept was wonderful and wanted to add to her portfolio.    IMG_9136 copy copy

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These are my favorites

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All images are the copyright property of the artist Mary Durante-Youtt

 

The weather was perfect, as was the temperature of the 80 degree water.

Thanks Arlene for the use of your home and pool.  Most of all, thank you for supporting my artistic endeavors.  I couldn’t do this without you.

 

And so it begins… another season of shooting underwater fashion.

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Filed under Fashion shoot, photography, underwater photography

Gleaning inspiration

Yesterday, my talented artist friend, Adrienne invited me to a preview of The Costume Institute’s spring 2017 –  Japanese fashion designer Rei Kawakubo’s exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through September 4th.  The two of us were reeling with excitement and ideas and decided to collaborate on some of my future photoshoots.

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I showed her images of some of the hats that two talented designers, Helen of Helena Rose  and Fatima Goldntima created for me and the ideas flowed.  I can’t wait to create some magic with her.

 

 

If you get a chance and you love fashion, you should get over to the museum.  There’s an Irving Penn exhibit through July 30th and Age of Empires – Chinese Art of the Qin & Han Dynasties (221 BC – AD 220) which runs through July 16.  And the admission fee is just a suggested donation, give what you please.

I can’t wait to continue shooting my underwater fashion project with some of the creative concepts that are swirling in my head.

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Filed under art, photography

Almost a total disastrous shoot…

I wanted to do some beauty shots to add to my portfolio so I called upon 2 of my favorite people. Model: Caitie and MUA: Ara. They’ve worked together a few times already so it should have been easy breezy. Their part of it was. Ara even helped with puffing Caitie’s hair. So while they were doing hair and make-up, I moved the strobes into position on the backdrop and plugged in the beauty dish. Basic, simple lighting. The beauty dish acted like a disco light flashing spastically and the strobes weren’t firing right. “F” me. Jene chimed in that I should have tested them last night. And he is right. But when I got there last night, he had just gotten up from a nap and was in a lot of pain (back issues). So I really didn’t want to bother him. We had limited time so while Jene tried to figure out what was going on with the remote triggers and beauty dish, I set the strobes to modeling  and used my off camera flash.

First image was blown out, a few camera adjustments and the second one was dark. I thought the flash didn’t work, so Ara checked as I clicked the shutter and yes the flash had recycled and worked. That kept happening throughout the shoot. I even stopped making adjustments to my shutter speed to see if that was the issue. But it didn’t matter, some came out over exposed, some underexposed and some just right.

I know in the past I sometimes get overly zealous and click the shutter before the flash had time to recycle. The batteries were strong, I checked. Anyway, I had a beautiful and patient model, a very talented MUA, thai curry veggies over rice for lunch and a few laughs.

 

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Next time I’ll be more prepared and check everything. Jene got everything working right by the  we finished.  Boy am I glad that wasn’t the first time we worked together, I would have been even more embarrassed.

 

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Filed under camera equipment, lights, photography

Vintage Hollywood Glam

Marielle has the soft, classic beauty of a starlet.  I decided to play around a little in photoshop to enhance the look that would recreate that sultry era of the silver screen.

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Photographer:  ©Mary Durante-Youtt,   Designer/Stylist: Helena Rose,
Make-up:  Arasy,   Hair:  Payton Holbrook,  Model:  Marielle Kehoe

 

I’m pleased with the way they turned out.

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Filed under Hats and headwear, designers, photography

Hats make a statement…

I remember going to millinery shops with my mother when I was a child.  I loved seeing the transformation as she placed different styles upon her head.  A hat sets a mood – flirty wide brims, feathers, flowers, ribbons and bows.  The right hat gives a woman (and a man) an extra dash of panache.

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© Bing.com images

As the models donned the hats, they seemed to lose themselves into a new roll.  Becoming what the hat portrayed.  Thanks to the creative geniuses, that took paper, netting, twigs etc to a new level.  I can’t wait to continue this project, even though Helen is back in Australia now.  I have the hats but it won’t be as much fun without her.

I played around a little more in photoshop with Anisa’s images.  Changed the bright painted white lips to silver.  It’s better.

 Photographer:   ©Mary Durante-Youtt,  Designer/Stylist: Helena Rose, Make-up:  Arasy   
Hair:  Payton Holbrook, Model:   Anisajl     
Marielle and Caitie wore swirled and twisted black netting, created by Helen, and I turned on the fog machine for a smokey effect.

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Photographer:   ©Mary Durante-Youtt,  Designer/Stylist: Helena Rose, Make-up:  Arasy   
Hair:  Payton Holbrook, Models:  Marielle Kehoe, Caitie McMillan
Finally, we got around to my other designer who waited patiently between wardrobe and model changes.  Fatima worked wonders with brown, sliced paper that she hand painted, folded, twisted and molded into shapes.  The result was regal.  The gold paint added the finishing touch.

 

Photographer:   ©Mary Durante-Youtt,  Designer/Stylist: Fatima Camara “Goldntima”,  
(earrings) Helena Rose, Make-up:  Arasy,  Model:  Janelle Clayton

Marielle wanted to vamp it up a little and changed gowns for a vintage Hollywood glam look.  Ara changed up her make-up, Payton gave her soft curls and Helen brought out her little fox.

Photographer:   ©Mary Durante-Youtt,  Designer/Stylist: Helena Rose, Make-up:  Arasy   
Hair:  Payton Holbrook, Model:  Marielle Kehoe
I absolutely loved working with this talented, creative team and could not have done this without them.  Click on their names and it will take you to their websites.
  

Models:                    Anisajl 
                                    Caitie McMillan
                                    Janelle Clayton
                                    Marielle Kehoe
Designer/Stylist: Helena Rose
Designer:               Fatima Camara “Goldntima”
Hair:                        Payton Holbrook
Make-up:              Arasy

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Filed under Fashion shoot, photography