vrijdag 26 april 2013

Grazyna 112

This beautiful portrait of Grazyna in vintage Cobra glasses concludes her photo shoot which was the first in a series of four shoots done during my stay in the Dublin area. Grazyna is the 40th Lady behind Crystal Veil.

Viewers may wonder how long it takes to produce a series of portraits like this so here's a view behind the screens. I met Grazyna at Bray Station at 18.45 - always a happy moment seeing that a model really turns up, especially abroad - and we took the ten minute walk to my B&B where some sixty glasses were waiting for a quick selection. This took us about 25 minutes and then we walked to the beach of Bray which was only 150 yards away, carrying two chairs, my tripod and two boxes filled with glasses. The actual shoot at the beach took us exactly one hour which yielded 270 photos (mind you, Grazyna changed glasses some twenty times during that hour). At 20.30 we walked back to the B&B and took a break. Shortly after 21.00 we started shooting again and this lasted a little over 20 minutes, yielding another 115 photos. Then I brought  the equipment and the glasses back to my room and walked Grazyna back to the station where we arrived around 21.45, exactly three hours after we caught the first glimpse of each other. Less than half of the three hours was used for the actual photo shoot. This is more or less the normal procedure. It may be added that Grazyna was very cooperative and highly effective with her own time.

I wish to thank Grazyna for her dedication and good posing during what is not exactly the average photo shoot for a freelance model. Technically it seems fairly easy because a photo shoot in glasses is rather static portrait photography. However, there are difficulties as well, not encountered by the model in her "normal" photo shoots. These have to do with the fact that a "Lady behind crystal Veil" does not pose in empty frames or glasses with plano lenses but in prescription glasses. My photo shoots usually start with glasses near the model's own prescription. This is an easy way for the model to get used to the routine. The second part of my photo shoots is all about glasses with a prescription way beyond the model's own prescription so all the model sees through the glasses is a massive blur. Of course there are several tricks that help the model to feel at ease and help her to produce natural, credible portraits. When needed, I explain these tricks at the start of the second part of the photo shoot but many models simply rely on their own imagination and some models even said afterwards that the second part was easier than the first part.

Dear Grazyna, thank you so much for the pleasant hours in your company and for the fine results! My life partner Nel (the entire project started with her in 2009) saw the slide show of your photo shoot and she said, "this is a lovely girl who gradually transformed herself into a beautiful young woman during her photo shoot". What Nel meant is something I witnessed many times before, without finding the right words for the phenomenon. I suppose that it has to do with growing self confidence in a previously unknown setting. What I especially liked about your posing is the switch from beautiful introverted melancholy into bold posing and back. These are good qualities for a freelance model at the start of her career and they will come handy in the future. I wish you all the success you deserve. Thank you so much!

donderdag 25 april 2013

Grazyna 111

These Cobra glasses were bought at the "Waterlooplein" flea market in my native Amsterdam during the late 1980's. In 2011 I did two photo shoots with an extremely narrow faced lady and these glasses suited her exceptionally well. Always handy to know. In my opinion the blend with Grazyna's features is a perfect match but this may also have to do with the model's fine posing.

Grazyna 110

Glasses: Cobra, early 1980's
[L: -4.00 / R: -3.50]

Grazyna 109

Another fine portrait of Grazyna posing in modern cat eye glasses, Rx -8, over six diopters above the model's own mild prescription.

Grazyna 108

Grazyna showing another side of herself in tortoise cat eye glasses by Zenni. Looking at the ceiling is another trick that helps when posing in glasses that only produce a massive blur.

Grazyna 107

Beautiful posing by Grazyna in modern cat eye glasses by Zenni with a bit of extravaganza.

Grazyna 106

Glasses: Zenni 4839
[L=R: -8.00]

Grazyna 105

It's a pity that time did not permit us to produce more portraits in these glasses. They were first shown in my photo shoot with Marike (not to be sconfused with my climbing partner Marieke) in February this year.

Grazyna 104

Confident posing by Grazyna in tortoise glasses by Zenni with a touch of the cat eye look. The contrast with the previous portrait is striking. Both ways of posing are great and it speaks for the model's abilities that she is able to present two aspects within a matter of seconds. Well done, Grazyna!

Grazyna 103

Glasses: Zenni 6072
[L=R: -8.00]

A classic - one of my favorites from this entire photo shoot.

Grazyna 102

Another fine portrait of Grazyna posing in modern cat eye glasses by Zenni

Grazyna 101

Grazyna in soft focus, wearing one of her favorite glasses from my Zenni collection. Just as she was testing them on the beach (photos 076 and 077) we decided that the cold was too much so we headed for the shelter of the B&B. It's good that there was a second chance for these glasses. Again, excellent posing!

Grazyna 100

Glasses: Zenni 6206 (see also Grazyna 076 and 077)
[L=R: -8.00]

Grazyna 099

The decision to give some of Grazyna's favorite glasses another go was a wise one. It yielded this splendid portrait. Superb posing indeed. One of the highlights of this photo shoot!

Grazyna 098

Grazyna and I decided to give some of her favorite glasses from the beach another go, just to make sure that they would be well documented. These vintage cat eye glasses by SBF were among her favorites and here she gives them a heavenly look in appreciation.

Grazyna 097

Glasses: SBF, Germany, early 1960's (see also Grazyna 024-027)
[L: -0.50; c-1.00 h / R: -0.75; c-0.50 h]

Grazyna 096

Another fine portrait of Grazyna posing in extreme glsses from the mid 1970's called Saphira.

Grazyna 095

The thumb rue in the selection of glasses frames is: seek for compensation towards the average facial shape. This means that a lady with a narrow face should never wear an extremely high, narrow frame like these crazy vintage Saphira glasses. But photo shoots are there to toy with these thumb rules and see what comes out. Judge for yourself....

Grazyna 094

From one extreme - posing in tiny antique glasses - to the other: extreme glasses from the 1970's. The high, narrow shape of the frame is something I never saw before. The glasses were a find at the famous flea market "Waterlooplein" (Amsterdam) in the 1980's. Judging by the wear and tear of the glasses, their first owner must have used them full time for a good few years.

Grazyna 093

Glasses: Saphira, mid 1970's
[L=R: -3.50]

Grazyna 092

Grazyna adjusting the straight arms of these antique glasses in an attempt to bring the lenses in their natural position. The touch of irony in this portrait is great.

Grazyna 091

Glasses: antique, with straight arms, made circa 1900
[L=R: -3.25]

Grazyna 090

The first model who posed in these striking glasses was Lucy, on a dark November day in the streets of Amsterdam. After seeing her portraits we baptized these glasses "I won't get lost in the dark". Grazyna did not pose in these glasses on the beach so there was no chance to put her to the test :).

Grazyna 089

Here Grazyna is showing how good posing in strong glasses is done. Sliding the glasses down the nose, looking over it to get a good impression of the surroundings, then put the glasses back on and trying to concentrate on the clear image seen just a few seconds before. That's how it works!

Grazyna 088

Glasses: Zenni 6819
[L=R: -8.00]

Grazyna 087

The left lens in these drop temple glasses kept steaming up but Grazyna was not bothered by that. It was far too strong for her anyway. The right lens is only one diopter too strong so these are monovision portraits.

Grazyna 086

These beautiful drop temple glasses from the 1980's were sent to me a few years ago by Stephan from Bavaria, one of my favorite photographers.

Grazyna 085

Glasses: Gan Aimh, drop temple, 1980's
[L: -5.50 / R: -2.00; c-0.50 o]

Grazyna 084

Grazyna posed in these beautiful "Amanda" glasses on the beach (portraits 020 - 023) but we decided to give the glasses another try in the entrance hall of the B&B for comparison. It yielded this fine portrait.

Grazyna 083

Not entirely sharp but included for the beautiful "pensive mood" posing by Grazyna

Grazyna 082

Another fine portrait of Grazyna in black and white Zenni glasses, Rx around -12.

Grazyna 081

Grazyna posing in the favorite glasses of my life partner Nel who wears them often in daily life. These glasses are only for long distance. When Nel decided that she liked them I ordered progressive lenses for her at Ciliaryblue.

Grazyna 080

Glasses: Zenni 2823
[L: -11.00; c-1.25 v / R: -11.50; c-1.25 v]

Grazyna 079

Grazyna posing in the most extravagant cat eye glasses from my collection, made by Zenni a couple years ago.

Grazyna 078

Glasses: Zenni 4844
[L=R: -8.00]

Grazyna 077

"Enough is enough.... Let's continue in the B&B".

Grazyna 076

Glasses: Zenni 6206
[L=R: -8.00]

Grazyna 075

Another evening photo of lovely Grazyna posing in vintage glasses by Christian Dior on the cold beach at Bray. Ireland in April.... we decided to try one more pair of glasses and then continue the photo shoot in my comfortable B&B.

Grazyna 074

Another check by Grazyna - nobody on the beach anymore except ourselves. The Christian Dior glasses gave her almost perfect eyesight.

Grazyna 073

Christian Dior glasses first caught my attention when I was working in Switzerland in 1976. Their first frames were in basic colors: red or green or blue. The frames had a consistent design with a "signature stamp" all of its own. You could recognize a pair of Dior glasses even from the far side of the street. Dior was also the first who put his logo on the arms of the glasses. Compact discs had not been invented so the abbreviation "CD" stood for Christian Dior. Two years after their breakthrough, Dior changed the colors of the frames to suit brunettes even better. This narrow frame 1200 was made around 1978.

Grazyna 072

Fine posing by Grazyna in a classic pair of glasses made by the famous Christian Dior in the late 1970's. The narrow frame suits the model's face quite well.

Grazyna 071

Glasses: Christian Dior 1200, late 1970's
[L: -1.50 / R: -1.50; c-0.50 h]

Grazyna 070

Grazyna checking the beach of Bray through vintage Neostyle glasses that gave her perfect eyesight. The beach was very quiet when we started the photo shoot at 19.30. This portrait was made around 21.00 and we were the only people on the beach. Aside from the cold, conditions were perfect for the photo shoot. The same goes for the location which was only a stone throw away from my warm and comfortable B&B.

Grazyna 069

Orange frames first appeared in the shops around 1964 and the color remained quite popular until the early 1970's. Meanwhile, frames became bigger and these "Vela" glasses belong to the final years of the orange wave. in eyewear fashion. Here Grazyna shows that the old thumb rule was too strict. Orange frames do suit at least some brunettes. I really like the model's posing in these portraits.

Grazyna 068

Over forty years ago, opticians had rather strict thumb rules regarding frame choice. Orange frames were for blondes. Brown or black frames were for brunettes. Nowadays it's the client who makes the choice.

Grazyna 067

Glasses: Neostyle (Vela), early 1970's
[L: -1.75 / R: -2.00]

Grazyna 066

Another great picture of lovely Grazyna posing at night fall on the beach of Bray in glasses made by Francois Pintin.

Grazyna 065

These beautiful imitation tortoise shell glasses by Francois Pintin were acquired in Dublin a decade back. They were featured in my photo shoots with Irma, Nanda, Karen and Jolien in Holland and they can also be seen in the video documentary of the opening of my exhibition in Enschede (September 2010) where Mirjam was the catwalk model who posed in them. Here Grazyna joins their ranks in her own distinguished way. The glasses made their journey back to Holland with me but it was nice to give them an "almost at home" feeling during the week in the Dublin area. Once more, hat off for Grazyna!

Grazyna 064

Great posing by Grazyna at night fall on the beach of Bray. The glasses by Francois Pintin gave her good eyesight. Quite handy if one has to play "Baywatch"!

Grazyna 063

Glasses: Francois Pintin, possibly early 1990's
[L=R: -1.25]