Carine & Sandrine Photoshoot – Women’s Expressions 2013 Calendar

Behind the Scene

Sunday, March 18th, 2011, turned out to be a beautiful day. There were sunny skies, and the temperature reached 25 degrees Celsius. We were experiencing a heat wave, with temperatures beating the previous record (set in 2010) by 14 degrees. We were about to begin Carine and Sandrine’s (twin sisters) photo shoot in a dark basement filled with thin light streams produced by red laser beams. This was our last photo shoot, and it would complete the 2013 calendar. In 8 months, we had completed a total of 12 photo shoots! We thought it was amazing that we had accomplished so much in such little time.

This photo shoot was going to require significant preparation. We had learned from the previous shoots that we needed to improve the technical groundwork. Also, it was imperative that the model’s costume, make-up, hairstyle and poses be very well prepared. These details were to be determined beforehand. In preparation for this shoot, we came up with some interesting themes. Initially, the twins were to be body-painted for the photo shoot. Amélie (our make-up artist) had purchased a spray-paint gun and compressor. She was taking a shot at it… It would be her first time applying makeup and paint to a whole body. This was unlike her usual tasks as a make-up artist and would be a challenge. With the help of Elyse, a tattoo artist, Amélie had come up with the perfect body paint design. They planned to spray the upper body in gold and hand-paint a snake along the side of the leg up to the shoulder, with the snake’s head reaching out to the shoulder blade. This design would be phenomenal and worth a full day’s work. However, after a long reflection, Carine and Sandrine were no longer convinced about the body painting. We needed a plan B.

Amélie proposed an Egyptian theme. The twins have natural black hair that would be appropriate for the theme. For the calendar photo, we envisioned the twins kneeling face to face with their hands touching. They would gaze intensely into each other’s eyes. The make-up artist would make the twins resemble Elizabeth Taylor in “Cleopatra,” with gold clothing and accessories.

After further thought, the twins dismissed the Egyptian theme idea as well. We now needed a plan C. After much brainstorming, the technical team developed a Cirque du Soleil theme. Carine and Sandrine would wear body suits decorated with jewelry and would be photographed in a way that would accentuate their feminine curves. The photoshoot would take place in a dark room filled with laser beams, much like the movie “Entrapment” starring Catherine Zeta-Jones. After searching the Internet, we had many poses in mind for the shoot, and we were ready to propose this idea to Carine and Sandrine.

The twins were thrilled and motivated when we suggested the Cirque du Soleil theme. To them, this theme fits their personality like a glove. A decision was then made: we would pursue this concept. The twins would wear a black body suit and golden accessories. The photographer immediately started planning the photoshoot setting. He purchased lasers from the Dollar Store and La Source. He captured the laser beams on film by producing smoke with the smoke machine. But there was a catch: we had to generate a lot of smoke to view the laser beams clearly, which would incidentally blur the models. It was not until the day of the photo shoot that we finally deduced that the lasers would have to be pointed toward the camera for a perfect view of the laser beam and the models, with minimal smoke. This concluded the technical preparation of the shoot.

Sandrine and Carine

After the twins’ arrival, Amélie began the make-up application, which took 3 hours. Meanwhile, the rest of the team enjoyed the nice weather out on the patio with a cappuccino and water. We took advantage of the sublime weather during our spare time.

Once the make-up was done, we all gathered around the twins. Amélie’s efforts had definitely paid off! The twins were astonishing: Sandrine portrayed a butterfly, and Carine’s make-up reflected a pearl’s eye (refer to the images). It was then time for their fitting, and Nadine brought some final touches to their attire. They wore high-heeled black boots but were presented with a lovely pair of shoes that both couldn’t resist. However, there was a little problem… there was only one pair! Who ended up wearing these irresistible shoes? You will find out on the calendar!

After the photo shoot, Carine and Sandrine could only express gratitude for the technical team’s hard work. They were particularly thankful for the photographer’s efforts in making them feel at ease, considering they had no experience in modelling or posing in front of a camera. Although the twins were nervous initially, this feeling quickly disappeared due to the caring and warmth provided to them by the team members.

We had now completed our 12th photo shoot. Through these photo shoots, we had learned many things and had formed a solid team. As we reflect on our experiences, we can synthesize and use our knowledge in the future. For one, we now know that it is important that only one person provide direction to the models, and that person should be the photographer. The remaining technical team members are to assist when required (e.g. holding the lasers in position). The preparation was very efficient during this last photo shoot; the shoot lasted 2 hours, as opposed to 4 hours for the previous photo shoots. Needless to say, it was our most successful shoot in every aspect; everything fell into place with no major stumbles. The lessons learned are the following:

  • To avoid confusion, only one person coaches the model with respect to positioning.
  • Preparation of the photo shoot set is crucial before the shoot to eliminate any technical problems.
  • The theme, poses, clothing, hairstyle and make-up should be determined in advance and discussed with the models to reduce anxiety.
  • Only one theme and outfit should be chosen to save time. We should avoid theme diversification.

Article by Joanne
Edited by Zoé G.

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