This is Ellen, who just happened to be standing behind us in the queue for coffee in Starbucks on a Sunday afternoon with a friend, minding her own business. Catherine, always living a makeup life remarked to me how she thought Ellen had a great look, and in particular a real resemblance to the look of Jean Shrimpton, who of course was brought to fame as a model by photographer David Bailey, and quite controversially so in the early 1960’s.

Within a few weeks of that chance meeting with Ellen, the BBC happened to show a film called “We’ll Take Manhattan” which tells the story of David Bailey, his controversial relationship as a photographer with Vogue Magazine, his rebellious streak which went on to make his name in the business, and his relationship with Jean Shrimpton, an unknown girl who Bailey had complete faith in as a model. This is a great watch by the way for anyone who’s serious about people photography!

Following watching that film Catherine got in touch with Ellen with a selection of Jean Shrimpton iconic images with a view to recreating some of them. Ellen loved the idea and was excited to do it when she was home from uni for Easter.

A few days ago it all came together, Ellen arrived with us, Catherine made the fantastic 1960’s makeup transformation, and hair was styled 1960’s style by David Graham Hairdressing.

For the purpose of my blog however which is obviously photography related, I won’t steal Catherine’s thunder regarding the black and white series of Jean Shrimpton images we started out with as they were all about the makeup styling. Catherine will do a much more detailed blog on her own makeup website, though I’ve included a couple of the Jean Shrimpton inspired images at the end here.

This blog is more about the images we did after the Jean Shrimpton series. We had some time left so I mixed this up between some studio work and then we headed out within the street of shops my studio is in. The sun was full on which seems to have been the order of the day for most of my location work recently 🙂

Here’s a selection of images:


This is a new background I literally was making when Ellen arrived, and was finished while she was having her hair styled. I like it and look forward to using it more because I think it can have a contemporary look, or could also have a rustic look. Ellen was fantastic for a non-model and took direction very well and had an ability to grasp a mood or look with ease. Lit to bring attention to those fantastic cheek bones of Ellen’s. 


With so little direction Ellen kept providing look after look. Surely this is a model in the making.


Even when literally backed into a corner it took just a single word and this was the look in return 🙂


One of my favourite shots of the day.


Moving outside, and this is the narrow space between two shops directly across the street from the studio. I literally look out through the door at this scene every day. I opted to drop the exposure for the wall to saturate and use off-camera flash for fill.


Exactly the same location as the above image, but from a slightly different angle, and sun glasses added. Exposure and flash as above.


Around the corner and into the carpark! The sun was hitting this wall full on from left to right. I got some strange looks from passers by doing this given its context of a carpark. Not very glamorous but one of those occasions where a long lens means onlookers can’t envisage so easily what I’m capturing. I thought the terracotta coloured wall, sun hat and sun with strong shadows made it Mediterranean in The Linen Green 🙂


And finally across to the Linen Mill garden furniture shop who was in the process of packing away and closing up for the evening. Full marks to Ellen because this was into full sun!


And now for a couple of Jean Shrimpton inspired black and white images. As I said above though, this was a makeup inspired theme and I don’t wish to take away from Catherine’s more detailed blog on this.






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1 Response
  1. Ciaran Kelly

    Another fabulous set of images!
    Fair play to all concerned.
    Now it’s back to the drawing board for me!

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