I usually begin a shoot with a pen and paper. My sketching style is rather rough, but it helps to get concepts through and solve problems visually. I began with two images in mind: 1) a bird nest lined with hair with blue eggs, and 2) Rebecca releasing her hair into the wind.
Surprisingly, the photos were nearly identical to my sketches (something that *very* rarely happens).
Before making the photos I needed to put together the “look” of the scene and find/create props. Rebecca had saved her hair in a bag for me after my brother Zachariah shaved her head, the nest was sitting in a bush all winter (I retrieved it while it was full of snow, long before any birds were even thinking about coming back to Buffalo), and the feathers were purchased from Michael’s.
I already had the blue dress in my costume closet but the other details needed to be fabricated. I began with the “wings,” using sheer fabric cut and gathered in a diamond shape, a yard of lace, and feathers! Next I began working on the rope necklace (this part was waaaay more complicated than I anticipated, and it got tangled in everything!!!).
Then all that was left was the shoot itself! The best time to do something like this happens to fall on the few days right before a new round of chemo (which is on a 21 day cycle). Unfortunately, it was a rather chilly day (which seems to be common whenever she models for me).
Anyways, here are a few outtakes !