For this photo shoot I began, like everyone with the idea of Structure. Structure can mean so many things but after writing through a few ideas I stumbled upon the idea of Social Structure. We had discussed it briefly in our Theoretical and Social Fashion Studies class and it peaked my interest. The clothes we wear every day show more than just our personalities, they express our social class. This notion is becoming decreasingly obvious with the invention of Primark etc where everyone can have the latest trends and designer knockoffs. However, in the time of Marie Antoinette this notion was at its height. Not only in clothing but also in every aspect of life from what you ate to what bed you slept in. I decided to mix the idea of Marie Antoinette with the notion that wearing well kept vintage is a status symbol. Although the dresses I found were more vintage (one being a recent FCUK dress) I though the vintage aspect could come more into play in the editing phase. The Marie Antoinette influence played mostly into the makeup making the women in the photographs almost modern day French aristocrats. I also played around with her famous quote “let them eat cake” with the slightly cliché idea to incorporate cupcakes into the shoot. The food fight idea came after I decided that some playful interaction between the models would show that they are carefree and can afford to waste time and food. I would like to eventually expand this shoot to show other classes and play with other characters in history that represented different social classes.
I kept everything other than the clothing simple in the shoot to really improve upon my knowledge of studio shooting. I chose continuous back lighting to create a soft glow behind my models. I used to the white side of the foam reflectors to make sure that there was enough light on their faces. I also chose to use a grey backdrop because the white and the black were too harsh and I wanted to create a more romantic feel to the shoot to match the romanticized lives the rich led in the time of Marie Antoinette. The selection of the photos was time consuming as I had over 200 images to choose from. In the end to simplify things I decided to have two photos of each model individually and two of them together. I kept the editing simple choosing only to play with Brightness/Contrast, Vibrancy/Saturation and Colour Balances. I began with two images making sure I was happy with both of them on similar setting and then I used those as guidelines for the other four images to achieve a similar effect. The lighting gave the grey backdrop a cool glow so I pushed that a bit further while giving the makeup and cupcakes more vibrancy (and adjusting the saturation to make sure the models were not orange). In the end the images have the cool vintage effect I was aiming for.