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Home » Shooting Days » List of events » September 2007

Lot of models registered for the Shooting days of september 2007. Wut the week before the event they didn't remember anything. And then it was too late to look for other models...

Fake models

Fake models do a disservice to the people who are genuinely interested in becoming a professional model: they take up one of the available places (we only work with a limited number of models). We've decided that from now on, the models need to do a testshooting before the international shooting days, so we can be sure that the models are mature enough.

We rent a house nearby the waterfront (we will rent the same house nearly ech year when we go to the North of France). Even after three years of shooting in the North region, they are still enough interesting places nearby. All places are well within reach (maximum one hour drive).

The house is big enough for a photoshoot at home, in the garden or in one of the barns (the house is a former farm with different outbuildings: it's easier to make a living working with tourists than with cattle).

There is a big bunker on the opposite side of the road, that's ideal for a military photoshoot by sunrise or sunset, but this sort of shootings were not proposed when the german photographer (quite old and now deceased) was present.

We had bad weather the first day, and we spend our time going the the mall. It's a big shopping mall, and you can stay there all day and night if you like. In the evening, we visited the town of Boulogne-sur-Mer.

Each photographer has his own model for the whole day. Normally we plan two models for each photographer, but this year all the sessions were one-to-one photoshoots. My model for the day is Sandy. He's very earger to learn the job and tries different poses.

We didn't do much group sessions (they are always difficult to handle), but we came together after one or two hours of shooting to go to a different location.

The picture on the left (two above) was taken in a bunker at the Mont d'Hubert (Cap Blanc-Nez). The bunker is ideally suited and there is ample lighting coming through the holes. When i came back some years later, there was no bunker anymore.

The first hours of a shooting session are just to get in touch. The best pictures are taken at the end of the shooting, when the model and the photographer are used to each other. And when we organise a Shooting Day event, with the models staying on location, there is much more time to make good pictures.

But of course it's not just about photoshoots. The models learn to work together to archieve their goal. There is time left for information sessions about modelling agencies and mister competitions.

The next day, we went to Belgium to pick up some belgian models at the railroad station. We took the time to organise a shoot at the Mercantile Belliard Polyship shipyards. It was a very busy site in the seventies (together with the shipyards at Hoboken), but they closed some twenty years ago. At this moment, the site is being sanitised to build yet another set of office buildings. There is no real industrial activity in Ostend anymore, and that's also visible in the harbour: nearly no fishing boats and fish processing industry anymore, no Belgian Navy shipyards anymore, no ferries to Great Brittain... Oostend is dying, but is not aware of it.

We went to the Belliard Polyship at noon, when the sun was too strong to make good pictures. Later in the afternoon, we went to the harbour, but each time i go there there are less and less usefull pages. At this moment, the bunker site (Halve Maan and Hindius) are not available. When the city will have some money to spend, they will make some sort of museum, like in raverside. This mean that again a beautiful location is lost forever.

The sun is just right at 6 in the afternoon (Golden hour). We bring the belgian models back to the railroad station and drive back to France late in the evening.

One of the models needed a standard portfolio photoshoot and Denis, the other photographer took the task upon himself. I was left with Sandy in the house. What about some sort of strip show? Sandy has an eastern european look (he's from one of the former sovietic satellite states), and most actors who work in the porn business do have that look (Bel Ami...).

As time passes by, you see the change in brands: at that time it was Volcom (anybody heard of this brand lately?). At this moment it's G Star, Chasin',... but the trends can change very quickly.

And then it was time to go shopping (yes, again. Models are very hungry and need to be fed every three hours).

We didn't go to the pointe de la Crèche yet, so we went there in the evening. We see the city lights of Boulogne-sur-Mer in the background. There is always an strong wind on the hillside: just make one panorama photo and go down.

The closure of blast furnace "Comilog" some years ago was the death knell of the port industry. There are still some fisheries, but that's all. Even the space that was formely used by the steel industry is not fully reclaimed yet.

Comilog was always some sort of odd installation, producing ferromanganese steel instead of pig iron. The production site was too smal, with only one furnace in working condition, and the plant could not grow for lack of space.

One of the models lost his wallet in the evening. I went back in the early morning, but didn't find anything. We went to the nearest police station (some 15 km further, in Marquise). We had to wait for 30 minutes, then another 30 minutes because the only officier who could help us was not yet there. They didn't found the right papers (we're foreigners in France, and the normal papers are not valid: there is no space to fill in: Country:. After some extensive scratching of his head, we were send back. "Go to Belgium and fill your papers there!"

Today, it's a great day for Sam, who wants to become a model. His parents brought him to our location in France for the fotoshoot. He has nearly no experience, but looking at the pictures, i'm very confident that he can make it.

I've learn this week that it is not the number of models that's important, you can make better pictures when you work with one single model for two or three days. A real Scott bomber jacket is always a nice accessory for a photoshoot. It's a pitty most models buy low quality clothes (but with a big name on it). I once bought a G Star jacket and the buttons already let loose after one week.

I drove 2828km in one week.

France 2007

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