I recently took some photos to model new apron designs for my Etsy shop. New designs mean new potential customers, and so fresh photos are integral to making sales and showing off product. Since I don’t have many people nearby who appeal to my target customer base to model for me, I must be my own model.
I don’t mind however, as I have recently learned that knowing how to operate your business from start to finish, and having experience with the day to day operation is often referred to as “full stack”. What that means for me is that I design the apron, draft the pattern, construct and finish each apron, model photos, complete photography and editing and also sell and ship to buyers. I suppose one day I will need to delegate some of these duties to other people that I will need to hire; but, a huge asset will be for me to know how the task is done myself.
I have a basic mannequin to showcase my designs, but I think that a human model is a better at showcasing the “fit” of garments for many reasons. One particular reason is, unlike a mannequin the human body has more curves and is less perfect than a factory made representation. I think that it is important to capture this imperfection when it comes to sexy designs such as the ones in the LillyBoChic line. We have all seen Victoria Secret ads, so I think I can be different from that fake and unattainable ideal.
Also, the head and arms are missing from my mannequin, so the ability for a potential buyer to imagine themselves in the item is diminished. I love the pose where a woman puts her hands on her hips and accentuates the hourglass shape we all know and love. My mannequin can’t do that.
Taking photos of myself in my designs pose significant challenges. One of which is that I do not have a tripod capable of holding my only functioning camera (which is my smartphone currently). After hair and makeup, I undergo a tricky exercise of balancing my camera at an angle that captures a particular area (usually in front of a nice background in my house), and using the self-capture setting I take burst photos of myself that often turn out quite well. For the photos that do not turn out well, I use Photoshop to enhance and crop as needed- but never to augment particulars like size or shapes a la Kardashian fame.
It is not ideal, but so far I believe it has improved my online presence to have candid photos of a model (me) wearing my apron designs. I have posted these photos on Tumblr with links to my Etsy listings, and save the best shots for the Etsy listings themselves. Some of the best responses to my photos have also been from pinning on Pinterest (a program that I absolutely adore).
One of my fixations of late, has been to capture my impressions of Earth from the viewpoint of someone looking down from space. Hours spent looking at Google Maps has helped with this (of course).
Pictured above is my latest piece: an abstract impression of islands floating in a clear and serene blue sea.
Although it is difficult to see in the photo- there is also some slight relief in this piece. You can see slightly raised lines in the shape of a circle. I enjoyed the use and mixture of colour to create this piece; however, if I could try this again, I would have started it on fresh canvas- sans relief lines.
I have been working with themes lately. I find that having a theme in mind keeps a person like me much more on track. As a creative-type, my process can be wandering due to my constant desire to explore, learn, and try new things.
This is my latest work, entitled: “Underwater Volcanic Pressure”
I wanted to capture an imagined view of magma trapped between two giant tectonic plates, by blending blues greens and bright orange with yellow.
The size is a bit small at 12 x 24 inches. If I could go back, I would had made this a bit larger, as I really like the way the orange magma turned out, and I would have liked to see it spread out on a wider canvas.
Right now I am enjoying using bright orange to contrast with dark blue in my work, so I am very excited to see how this will evolve in my next few pieces.
I have always been in awe of the sun. (Not unlike most other creatures on this earth of course.) One of my favourite comics features a short story about a personified celestial being (the sun) falling in love with a woman from the planet he orbited. You can read more about it here.
I created this acrylic on canvas piece in two parts (diptych). I wanted it to be a three part (triptych), but alas, when creativity strikes you must not wait too long to capture it.
In order to have a 3rd canvas ready at the time of production I would have needed to wait another day to have the frame dry enough to stretch the canvas and prep it with gesso. I was able to spend more time blending the colours with two pieces instead of three. I used a pearlescent powder with to give a shimmering effect for the cloud area around the bright orange sun. The idea here is that the sun is peeking over a deep blue ocean to move across the sky from East to West.
I have been practicing new techniques with my abstract art. Swirls, clouds, and other effects are what I have been trying to achieve, and as seen above, my pursuits have been pretty good.
This piece is different because not only have I tried to communicate familiar shapes, but I have experimented with the shape and dimensions of the canvas. (Notice that the top right corner is irregular, and creates an inclined shape.)
I still try to focus on effective colour composition- as this is the reason why I started painting in the first place. Grey, blue and gold are the colours I am loving right now; however, I am noticing that dark violet tones are creeping in to my work (seen here).
I created this piece this month- it took about 6 hours. I really enjoy the colour composition; the play between light and dark. It’s really easy to lose yourself in the arrangements demonstrated, and I’ve found guests who have seen it in person to stare at the intersecting lines in a Rothko-esque fashion. (Famed artist Mark Rothko (d. 1970) was said to believe that large art is best observed 18 inches away from the canvas surface.)
You can check out the listing for this piece here.