A Fashion Editorial Film by Kevin Mason

You can download Kevin Mason’s first fashion editorial film on this link here

The film was shot in three hours on a Canon 5dMk11, the first time we have used the kit for video here at Garage. The model is the wonderful Tess Dimos, with Styling by Stevi Jelbart of Ophelia Fancy.

Somatic Dreams Part 1- Starring Tess Dimos.

The lighting was by Kevin and Natasha Alipour-Faridani, with Assistance by Nicholas Blake. Hair by Emma Hedges and Make-up by Tess and Myrtle MayLambert.

The micro site was set up by Garage Buddy and good guy, Andy Parker.

We have set up a specific page that you can download the entire film as a HD quality file, and to find it just click here the page will only be there for a limited period so make the most of the chance to download it now. Oh and there is some nudity- it is after all a lingerie editorial so it may not be entirely safe for work, depending on your boss.

More info on the aptly named Impossible film.

As you may know we have been testing the two versions of the Impossible Project film, the px100 and px600. You can see the results of the second test here I have just had another look at the images from that week and unfortunately like something from Back To The Future the images are fading fast. They are significantly more yellow than they were during the first scanning, and the ‘black’ is a very muddy red now and a very faded red at that. I will scan them again soon so you can all see.  These shots have been stored in the dark as well so I know its not contact to light that is causing this loss of image…. very disappointing so far. Has anyone else experienced the images degrading significantly over time? I’d love to know.

Project Popular Camera

Garage Studios recently gave free studio time to artists Claire Griffiths and Tina Jenner, as part of their joint venture ‘Project Popular Camera’. We are very pleased to have a guest blog from Claire telling more about the project and their time with us:

Tina and Claire

‘Project Popular Camera’ is a collaborative photographic journey undertaken by Rocket Artist Tina Jenner, an artist who has learning disabilities and me: Claire Griffiths, an Inclusive Arts Practitioner and photographer.

The project came about as part of my MA Inclusive Arts Practice, I aimed to research how (if possible) I could have an equal artistic collaboration with an artist who has learning disabilities. My collaborator Tina Jenner often uses text in her artwork, something which I find inspirational. I usually avoid having to write, especially in artwork. She also shares my passion for photography and so was an excellent collaborator.

The purpose of this arts project was to develop and facilitate a framework through which a mutual transfer of skills, knowledge and support could enable both the Tina and I to develop our artistic practice together. Through mutual dialogue came the idea of each creating a personal-alphabet. We supported one another to take photographs and to create text exploring the words they’d each chosen to represent letters of the alphabet.

Video still in studio

We created some of our images at Garage Studios, a professional photography studio and training centre in Brighton. There we worked alongside professional photographer Kevin Mason kindly let us use his amazing space for two sessions and helped us to use the studio’s lighting. At the first shoot we painted with jam and spilled nuts all over the floor whilst creating images of objects that are significant to us. The next week we took portraits of each other dressing up as ‘alter egos’, whilst rocking out to The Spice Girls. Kevin was brilliant, very observant but unobtrusive at the same time and didn’t bat an eyelid at the potentially ruinous jam or at the very loud playing of ‘Wannabe.’ Shooting with an industry expert in this kind of professional environment gave the work the value and respect it deserved. Our Garage Studio sessions were focused, productive and damn good fun and most importantly, the images look great. Thanks Kevin.

During the project we also experimented with different types of cameras including film and digital and printed black and white photos using the University of Brighton’s darkroom. We also worked in the Rockets art studio at the Phoenix, Brighton. You can see some of our work and more about the project on our blog:

What resulted from this collaboration is a rich body of work, exploring themes of identity and equality. I have hand-printed some of the (medium format) images and had both full alphabets made into books, which will be exhibited in the MA Inclusive Arts Practice Final Show at The University of Brighton: The Sallis Benney Theatre Foyer, Faculty of Arts. 58-67 Grand Parade, Brighton, BN2 OJY.

June 26th – July 4th, 10am – 5pm, (Sundays 10am – 2pm).

Private View Friday 25th June 5.30pm – 8.30pm. All are welcome.

Video still Jam painting

Vid still tina as mel - Claire as bear

M = Mel C

Y = Yellow Bear

Alex Prager new work "Week End".

Alex Prager has a new exhibition at the Michael Hoppen gallery and I  went along to check it out, as I am a big fan of her work. If you are not familiar with what Alex’s work is about then the best thing to do is go along and see for yourself, its a relatively small but rewarding exhibition.

New work by Alex Prager

New work by Alex Prager

Shooting beautiful models is a simple thing to do, but the real skill comes in shaping a context and narrative for those models, and having a direction for the work- too often photography concentrates almost entirely on the body and the appeal of the gaze without the photographer bringing anything of themselves to the work. Alex’s approach could not be more different, meticulous levels of planning, and models hidden under wigs, mascara and a often palpable sense of fear or dislocation help her to achieve a narrative that lasts long after you have stopped looking at the work. Her skill comes from an apparent ease of harnessing the visual language of others, particularly Hitchcock and Lynch but then turning it in on herself and her subjects. Whilst the models often appear remote the work seems very deeply personal- there is a sense of loss and even lost identity here, yet at the same time a strength of independence and strong character. Her models aren’t weak, or objectified they have a tangible sense of the real, which is somehow only enhanced by the artifice of the wigs, the make-up and the general accoutrements of an extensive Vintage/Thrift store Hollywood wardrobe. She displays a very acute eye for styling and the luxurious detail of her images just add a further layer of intrigue to the work. It is immediate that these works are a fiction but the effect is so convincing that the viewer starts searching or constructing a back story to all her subjects.

She is also seemingly able to make a trademark of something as conventional as a low down wide angle, shot towards the sky, slightly reminiscent of Kubrick perhaps but she is carving out this shot as one of her own. Her work doesn’t so much hint at a narrative but instead gives you a definite direction to read her images, however they remain deliberately obtuse and hold back as much of the ‘act’ as they reveal. Alex’s glorious use of colour owes a debt to Lynch at his manipulative best and her use of the glance, the lost thousand yard stare and obvious flash lighting talks of a love of the street work of Philip LorcaDiCorcia.

New work by Alex Prager 2

New work by Alex Prager 2

The only slight reservation I have is the quality of some of the printing is not great, the main subject often looks incredibly lush and deep, with rich colours and a fantastic sharpness, but a closer look reveals skies covered in digital noise. The image above, of the Taxi is one of the best prints in the room with the even the rain itself taking on a richness and depth. As her attention to detail seems so acute it made me wonder how deliberate this supposed noise flaw was- but on further consideration I think it is just the limits of the media used. I’d love to have a go at working on one of her files for C-type printing though…

Using the landscape of Los Angeles only adds further layers to her work, planes fly above in a deep blue sky, the language of movie making is here in every way- and she even presents her first short film Despair starring Hollywood star Bryce Dallas Howard, whilst it lacks the originality and impact of her stills it shows an engaging photographer making a strong move forward into what surely must be a natural progression by someone so influenced by the concept of “The Movies” and in particular the myth building narrative of the 50′s and the what it means to be lost and alive in Los Angeles- the city of character reinvention and artifice. It remains to be seen if she could work with a studio that would fully support her ideas but her photography already has a strong commercial angle and she appears keen to discuss the Hollywood legacy  already so a film is a very promising step indeed.

I really recommend this exhibition if you ever intend to ‘construct’ images, as whilst its also her detail that engages it is the knowledge of when to hold back, when a close up may be of far more use than a wide angle, and how much information to directly lead the viewer with. She is apparently an early master of this medium and the release of new images often has the feel of a movie premiere due to the inter connected role of her models, (is this new image a sequel or prequel)  and maybe its time you caught up with what’s been happening in Prager’s semi-fictional world.

The exhibition is free and open until 17/7/2010.


Brighton Fashion Week Trashion Before

Before shots from backstage of the Brighton Fashion Week Trashion show on Thursday 10th July, shot by Kevin Mason. Lit by a beauty dish at f8, shot at f6.7. This was a lot of fun until an entirely deranged runner tried to throw us out, even though the Backstage Manager and Production Manager had been hugely helpful in getting us some free space to set up in. For any of you that attended the GangUp launch she is the same girl that stole copies of the mag from the ceiling and punched Sally Reynolds in the face- I have no idea what she was doing but she did make the evening memorable. Attempting to throw out of the sponsors is not a good look- but when you attempt it in an eye rolling incoherent ranting way it kinda becomes funny… Fortunately we stayed and got these shots.
After Shots for Trashion
Before Shots for Couture
After Shots for Couture

Trashin Before Grid

Trashin Before Grid2

Before Trashin Grid 3

Brighton Fashion Week Trashion After

After shots from backstage of the Brighton Fashion Week Trashin show on Thursday 10th July, shot by Garage Assistant and YGPapped photographer Mary Pryce. Lighting by Kevin Mason. All designs by Jez Eaton. This show was a real highlight for us, brilliant fun to photograph.

Before Shots for Trashion
Before Shots for Couture
After Shots for Couture

Trashin After Grid

After Trashin Grid 2

Brighton fashion Week Couture

After shots from backstage of the Brighton Fashion Week Couture show on Friday 11th July, shot by Kevin Mason.

Between the madness of backstage, we set up our backdrop (titanium) and the light (one beauty dish, above head height at f8) and started shooting iso 100, f6.7, the aim being to get a before and after shot of every model involved and document the day. We went for the same static pose with each model as we knew we’d be putting them in a grid to display later.

So here we have it, images of all the models in the couture collection before they headed out on to the catwalk. Well done to all the designers, hair, make up and the models, the collection looked great. To see the before pictures click here.
After Couture Grid 1

After Couture Grid 2

After Couture Grid 3

After Couture Grid 4

After Couture Grid 5

Polaroid/Impossible Project- we need hints/tips and advice.

Another post about the new films from the Impossible Project. Do you have any top tips for us, and users in general? We have conducted two fairly rigorous tests of both the 100  and 600 Impossible Polaroid replacement films. You can see those tests

here and


However the tests we made were pretty much ‘out-the-box’ and shoot, so we are looking for any helpful information that you may have which we can put in one blog post that we will hopefully keep adding to. We will then order a bunch more film, bring in a model and see whether your suggestions make this wild film any more useable. They can range from anything to temperature control, storage, shooting indoors, outdoors etc. We also have heard lots of reports of the film fading during storage so we will keep rescanning the images over time and see if the image does degrade. Actually considering how acutely light sensitive they are- maybe even scanning is bad for them. Maybe I have just discovered a tip of my own, we will test that as well….

So you can either mail us, or post comments below, including any links, or images you have shot (lo-res please) and hopefully we will have a growing pool of information that will help everyone get the most out of what Impossible are selling right now. We want to cut right through the marketing, the gimmicky dark slides, the cutesy language and real test this for both consumers and professionals- do any of these films stand up in the commercial world. As you know we are fans of old Polaroid film here at Garage and Kevin is an absolute Polaroid obsessive who would rather have film than food, but we will remain objective and by opening it up to everyone hopefully we will get a good overview of what results people are achieving.

So send us what you have, what you know, what you discovered and we will try and manage it all into a decent pool of information. Plus you’ll get to see your tips in action, without having to spend money on the film yourself- now thats service.

EDIT- More test images here from Andrew Newson.

Brighton Fashion Week Before

Before shots from backstage of the Brighton Fashion Week Couture show on Friday 11th July, shot by Kevin Mason.

Between the madness of backstage, we set up our backdrop (titanium) and the light (one beauty dish, above head height at f8)  and started shooting iso 100, f6.7, the aim being to get a before and after shot of every model involved and document the day. We went for the same static pose with each model as we knew we’d be putting them in a grid to display later.

Most of these images are part way finished Hair and Make-up but models in their own clothes before they went onto the catwalk. The images may seem very calm and relaxed, but trust us when we say, it was madness back there, and very hot with a huge amount of passive Hairspray inhalation, which made Kevs eyes bulge and roll back in his head a few times. A brilliant night though and more to come.

Before Couture 1

Before Couture 2

Churchill Square Campaign

Recently our in house product photographer Natasha Alipour-Faridani worked with design company We Are Bleach for the Churchill Square advertising campaign.

If you’ve been to Brighton station or Churchill Square recently, you would have seen the huge banners dotting around.

We have two dedicated Product Photographers in-house, M.Halls and Natasha Alipour-Faridani.

We can produce Packshots for all your needs, fully colour corrected and processed ready to print. We have produced images for Brochures, Trade booklets and internationally published books, as well as one-off images for bespoke jewelers etc. We can handle any size of job or campaign.

If you would like to know more or see further images, please e-mail us  and we will be happy to discuss your needs.

To book a shoot or to find out more information click here to get in contact with us.