Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

I'm trying to bring you all more and more behind the scenes details and snippets. I have a great team that's coming together gradually so we should be able to create more and more content like this very soon. One area I really want to grow is the video side of things but sadly on this particular photoshoot my iPhone died while filming the Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot. We think it was due to it being so cold my phone gave up! The next shoot we will make sure we get some footage! 

Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

My vision for this photoshoot was inspired by Robin Hood Prince Of Thieves and maid Marion's hair in the film. Becky my client has naturally long, straight and thick hair so it was a long process getting the fine curls to be as volumous as I desired. It took about an hour to see my vision unfold!

Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

For the makeup I wanted her to have a rustic, rosy and fresh face that looked ever so slightly gaunt. Like she was sad, alone but had little life left in her other than her pink cheeks. A little macabre, a little unhappy but at the same time utterly stunning and a creature from past times. 

Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot
Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

Working with so many amazing clients this month has really made me realise that all my skills are so valuable to my work. From makeup, nails, styling to the final edited images. It's a really wonderful process to see unfold. I have decided to blog as much about the details on photoshoots to inspire and help others in the same industry or to just let you see behind the scenes.

Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

The main factor about this photoshoot was the character. Becky is a local artist and I always take my clients personalities into consideration. The idea I had for this particular shoot was to take her back in time to a dreamy, dark and life transitioning place. The Lady Of Shallot is one of my favourite poems and it evokes such deep emotions it was perfect for a dress I picked up on eBay a few weeks ago. I'm constantly sourcing outfits for shoots, and the majority of times I don't ever really know who will be wearing the looks that I find. I create the looks and let the universe take care of the rest. I love my job so much it's something I'm doing all day, everyday. It's a special gift seeing how my work unfolds.

Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

The Makeup & Nails

For this shoot the makeup had to be rich, rustic and soft. Almost like she wasn't wearing anything. But at the same time she had to look slightly distressed and gaunt. Russet eyes, fresh cheeks with a hollow twist.

The Urban Decay Heat pallet was perfect for this look. Along with Kevyn Aucoin's sculpting powder for a very slim, hollowed heroin feel. A touch of Kevyn's cream blusher used on the cheeks to help the look feel cold but fresh. A touch of a nude Loubutin matt lipstick on the lips with the same blusher to time the look together. 

Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

The finishing touch was using Kevyn Aucoin's exotique diamond eye gloss on the cheeks and brow bone to add a dewy glow. Like her skin had a soft misty haze on the highest points of her face, drenching it in light.

The nails I kept looking natural but added a faded french look using a gel overlay. I wanted them to look as natural as possible. This look is all about natural beauty that's hidden by darkness and shadows. 

Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

The last thing that I added to the overall outfit and look was an item out of my own personal archive. The perfume pendant was a gift from my mother years ago. They are said to have been used as poison bottles in the past and I feel this finished the story so perfectly. If you have read my blogs before you will know I always add something meaningfull to my images. 

Behind The Scenes - The Lady Of Shallot Photoshoot

The final pictures that we shot really do tell a woeful story of a fair maiden on a personal journey 

Images taken on a Sony a7ii using a 55mm lens at mainly f1.8 to create a very soft hazy effect 


The Lady of Shalott 1832

Alfred Lord Tennyson 

Part I

On either side the river lie
Long fields of barley and of rye,
That clothe the wold and meet the sky;
And through the field the road runs by
	To many-towered Camelot;              
And up and down the people go,               
Gazing where the lilies blow               
Round an island there below,               
	The island of Shalott.               

Willows whiten, aspens quiver,               
Little breezes dusk and shiver               
Through the wave that runs for ever              
By the island in the river              
	Flowing down to Camelot.              
Four grey walls, and four grey towers,               
Overlook a space of flowers,              
And the silent isle imbowers               
	The Lady of Shalott.              

By the margin, willow-veiled,              
Slide the heavy barges trailed               
By slow horses; and unhailed              
The shallop flitteth silken-sailed               
	Skimming down to Camelot:               
But who hath seen her wave her hand?             
Or at the casement seen her stand?
Or is she known in all the land,               
	The Lady of Shalott?               

Only reapers, reaping early              
In among the bearded barley,              
Hear a song that echoes cheerly               
From the river winding clearly,               
	Down to towered Camelot:               
And by the moon the reaper weary,              
Piling sheaves in uplands airy,              
Listening, whispers "‘Tis the fairy               
	Lady of Shalott.”         

Part II               

There she weaves by night and day              
A magic web with colours gay.            
She has heard a whisper say,               
A curse is on her if she stay               
	To look down to Camelot.               
She knows not what the curse may be,               
And so she weaveth steadily,              
And little other care hath she,              
	The Lady of Shalott.              

And moving through a mirror clear               
That hangs before her all the year,               
Shadows of the world appear.             
There she sees the highway near               
	Winding down to Camelot:              
There the river eddy whirls,
And there the surly village-churls,               
And the red cloaks of market girls,              
	Pass onward from Shalott.                             

Sometimes a troop of damsels glad,              
An abbot on an ambling pad,               
Sometimes a curly shepherd-lad,               
Or long-haired page in crimson clad,               
	Goes by to towered Camelot;               
And sometimes through the mirror blue               
The knights come riding two and two:             
She hath no loyal knight and true,               
	The Lady of Shalott.              

But in her web she still delights               
To weave the mirror’s magic sights,              
For often through the silent nights               
A funeral, with plumes and lights             
	And music, went to Camelot:              
Or when the moon was overhead,               
Came two young lovers lately wed;              
“I am half sick of shadows," said              
	The Lady of Shalott.              

Part III
A bow-shot from her bower-eaves,               
He rode between the barley-sheaves,
The sun came dazzling through the leaves,              
And flamed upon the brazen greaves               
	Of bold Sir Lancelot.               
A red-cross knight for ever kneeled               
To a lady in his shield,             
That sparkled on the yellow field,              
	Beside remote Shalott.              
The gemmy bridle glittered free,             
Like to some branch of stars we see
Hung in the golden Galaxy.              
The bridle bells rang merrily               
	As he rode down to Camelot:               
And from his blazoned baldric slung               
A mighty silver bugle hung,               
And as he rode his armour rung,               
	Beside remote Shalott.              
All in the blue unclouded weather              
Thick-jewelled shone the saddle-leather,
The helmet and the helmet-feather              
Burned like one burning flame together,               
	As he rode down to Camelot.              
As often through the purple night,               
Below the starry clusters bright,               
Some bearded meteor, trailing light,               
	Moves over still Shalott.               
His broad clear brow in sunlight glowed;              
On burnished hooves his war-horse trode;
From underneath his helmet flowed              
His coal-black curls as on he rode,              
	As he rode down to Camelot.               
From the bank and from the river               
He flashed into the crystal mirror,              
“Tirra lirra," by the river               
	Sang Sir Lancelot.              
She left the web, she left the loom,              
She made three paces through the room,
She saw the water-lily bloom,               
She saw the helmet and the plume,               
	She looked down to Camelot.               
Out flew the web and floated wide;               
The mirror cracked from side to side;               
“The curse is come upon me," cried               
	The Lady of Shalott.              
Part IV              

In the stormy east-wind straining,
The pale yellow woods were waning,               
The broad stream in his banks complaining,
Heavily the low sky raining               
	Over towered Camelot;               
Down she came and found a boat               
Beneath a willow left afloat,               
And round about the prow she wrote               
	The Lady of Shalott.              
And down the river’s dim expanse,              
Like some bold seër in a trance               
Seeing all his own mischance--
With a glassy countenance              
	Did she look to Camelot.              
And at the closing of the day               
She loosed the chain, and down she lay;               
The broad stream bore her far away,               
	The Lady of Shalott.               
Lying, robed in snowy white               
That loosely flew to left and right--               
The leaves upon her falling light--
Through the noises of the night               
	She floated down to Camelot:                
And as the boat-head wound along                
The willowy hills and fields among,               
They heard her singing her last song,               
	The Lady of Shalott.               
Heard a carol, mournful, holy,              
Chanted loudly, chanted lowly,               
Till her blood was frozen slowly,
And her eyes were darkened wholly,               
	Turned to towered Camelot.               
For ere she reached upon the tide               
The first house by the water-side,               
Singing in her song she died,               
	The Lady of Shalott.              
Under tower and balcony,              
By garden-wall and gallery,              
A gleaming shape she floated by,
Dead-pale between the houses high,               
	Silent into Camelot.               
Out upon the wharfs they came,              
Knight and burgher, lord and dame,               
And round the prow they read her name,               
	The Lady of Shalott.               

Who is this? and what is here?               
And in the lighted palace near               
Died the sound of royal cheer;               
And they crossed themselves for fear,
	All the knights at Camelot:               
But Lancelot mused a little space;               
He said, “She has a lovely face;               
God in his mercy lend her grace,               
	The Lady of Shalott.”