Shoot Story: Kayleigh’s First Shoot

Kayleigh's first photoshoot, wandering around Exeter hunting for inspiration.

Still with us? Good – from page 1, we’re on Exeter High Street, so let’s continue…

Also on the High Street is a shiny metal sculpture that’s starting to become a bit of a personal cliche for me. It’s good for reflection shots, which is what I usually go for, but Kayleigh was convinced that climbing onto it and sitting on the shiny metal balls was a good idea. I think she was right.

The old ruins in Princesshay were good for a few more shots – nice crumbling old walls are always good. No, we weren’t quite walking in circles, this is the other end of Princesshay.

We grabbed a couple more shots on the steps outside a cafe between Princesshay and Cathedral Green.

That brought us neatly to Cathedral Green itself. Kayleigh sat on the wall for some portraits with the cathedral behind, which is a more general Exeter Photographer Cliche, but it’s got to be done. Somehow we actually resisted using the medieval door that’s just near there, but maybe we’ll get it another time.

I suggested Kayleigh lying on the wall. She asked which way round – feet or head towards me. Given the shortness of that dress, I suggested head towards me – the other way would have been some quite different photos.

She suggested turning onto her front, which I wasn’t sure about. She was obviously thinking about what we actually got – propped up on her arms, which looks great. In my mind, though, I just had her flat out face down, which sounded like a very odd idea.

The reality was far more elegant, though I have to admit, the actual act of trying to roll over while balancing on a wall was, well, undignified.

If you’re thinking Kayleigh would be glad I wasn’t photographing that bit, well, you probably don’t know me very well. Or Kayleigh for that matter. She’s still the only model I’ve worked with who’s specifically asked for the worst photos to share with friends. But those are the outtakes, not for sharing.

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Anyway, back to the photos, because whatever image is in your mind now, Kayleigh lying face-down on a wall looks way better than that.

We tried getting Kayleigh on the floor, next to the word “Love”. It didn’t work quite as well as I’d hoped, but it’s a nice enough shot.

We finished off with a few photos at Guildhall, which I’ve used a few times now.

I think we got some pretty great photos in this shoot – I love them, and I really hope I get to work with Kayleigh again soon. I haven’t known anyone take to modelling quite so quickly and easily. She’s done shoots with some other photographers since, with great results – proving perhaps that these photos are more her skill than mine!

The outtakes? Oh, no, I couldn’t share those. Never embarrass a model. First rule of modelling shoots. Well, the first one we can talk about, anyway.

Oh, go on then, rules are made to be broken.

Maybe more to come someday, if Kayleigh forgives me for sharing those.

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