The ins and outs of planning my first photoshoot as a professional artist.
I always put a lot of pressure on myself to get the perfect images of my work, but I was especially precious with my first photoshoot. I knew social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook, were going to act as my shop window, and I wanted my images to represent what I imagine that shop would look like.
Through visual representation, I want my audience to gain an understanding of my vision. I want my images to spark people's imagination, and enable them to peep through a window into the world of 'Lily Adele Art'. And so I decided to feature in my shots as I wanted my brand to have a human face. I found it foreign and scary as hell being in front of the lens, but being able to incorporate my love for fashion and textiles, made stepping out of my comfort zone worth it!
My artwork suspends intricate fabric representations of birds within glass, and I imagine their rich colours and contemporary frames to be seen in the most majestic of settings. Feathers, patterns and textures were all things I considered when planning for this shoot. I wanted the organic lines of nature to be celebrated in an interior setting. So, I went overboard on the floral patterns, bouquets, animal prints and more. With style icon Iris Apfel's words ringing in my ears: 'More is more, because less is a bore.', I kept dreaming what else I could add to my shots.
I thought: "What if I get actual birds in my photos?!"
I started googling animal hire companies, with wildly ambitious ideas for my shoot. I wanted to incorporate, live Flamingos, Peacocks and Macaws... until some rather snooty people on the other end of the line dismissively told me it would cost £50,000 to hire a Hyacinthe Macaw. Feeling a tad deflated I went back to the drawing board. Refusing to be defeated however, my mind wondered to Taxidermy*.
I thought "If I can show how stunningly beautiful real birds look in an interior setting, as well as where I get my inspiration from, people will start to envisage my birds adorning their own walls." After no more than a week's research, we found a taxidermist* living practically next door to my aunt's house, who was willing to lend me the birds for the day for FREE! Everything after that just sort of fell into place, and thanks to photographer Zoë Lower, who understood exactly what I was trying to achieve, we created a shoot I felt confident enough to launch with.
*All registered taxidermists in the UK have to be able to provide documents proving all animals they use have died of natural causes.