Skip to main content

What It’s Like to Be Part of a Purposefully Awkward Photoshoot?

Having read what photographer, Jessie Gaffney, had to say about the ‘80s shoot in yesterdays article (which you can read here if you missed it), we also heard from the other creatives behind the shoot. Hearing from the models to the MUA, we find out what it’s like to be part of a purposefully awkward photoshoot. Take a read below:

Duncan Paylor - Model:

In 2020, “as part of my ongoing crusade to say yes to as many opportunities that life threw [his] way”, Duncan agreed to try modelling. Although it was never an planned hobby or career, he loved every moment of it so far.

From chilly wild swimming professional shoots to posing in a park with pretty pink posies in his beard, Duncan states, “It's all been a great experience so far and I'm always looking forward to seeing what might be next.

As far as creative goals. I'm not sure what I'd like to do. I'm enjoying working with people more creative than I am. I want to experience as many different styles as possible, before trying to work out ideas for myself.

But mostly. I want to prove to other older, chunkier guys that nothing is off the table for them. Anyone can do anything that they want to do. Stay positive. Say yes!”

Huanran Pang - MUA:

Huanran learnt professional painting and scratchings since the age of 2, she had different famous artists as her tutor, she held a personal art exhibition when age of 10, she was always into beauty and fashion. She studied a professional makeup course in China( asian style makeup) and she is doing a professional makeup course in newcastle college. She finds painting and drawing can have great help for her makeup skills, she wants to combine the best parts of asian makeup and western makeup and gradually develop her own style

Laura Jackson - Model & Owner of Fridays Vintage:

Laura actually began with a bad first experience in modelling. She was signed when she was 17 to a local agency and was badly treat by them in the short time she was there. Having put her off for years, making her scared to do it again for the fear she would be met with the same, she was then asked to do this shoot - and what a different experience it was! Feeling comfortable, safe and respected on set, “my cheeks hurt afterwards for smiling for so long. It has made me want to do it again!”

Laura began Friday Vintage in summer this year, after years of collecting, selling vintage and daydreaming of owning her own vintage store. With a love of sourcing individual pieces from here, there and everywhere, Laura believes it is amazing the places you will find gems! Laura states, “The small business community in Newcastle is such a lovely community to be a part of.”

Hannah Gowling - Stylist & Owner of Pre Loved Vintage Plus:

Following a late ADHD diagnosis, Hannah realised she had a suppressed creative side she had never explored. Realising the importance of having purpose behind your work, Hannah decided to set up a business that reflected something that was important to her and allowed her to “work with [her] different brain rather than against it”. 

Hannah stated, “I have always loved vintage clothes but often found that the shopping experience in vintage shops can be intimidating and if you've never felt like the cool kid, you might feel like you have no place there.

As someone who is Plus-size, I related to people's struggles in finding clothes that fit and having the confidence to even browse or play around with your style. I wanted to create a safe, fun, space for people wanting to shop preloved and vintage whether they are a seasoned vintage shopper or someone who wants to incorporate some vintage pieces into their wardrobe. I wanted people to feel they could shop without judgement and feel the brand is inclusive and accessible.”

Dana - Model:

Dana has an art studio in New Bridge, Shieldfield and she loves exploring fashion from a trans perspective. Gorgeous and very talented model. She makes clothing and is currently creating a photo series

Hildy Harland - Model:

Hildy Harland is an all round creative and very multi talented plus size ADHD sparkly woman who has worked with Jessie on many photoshoots over the years. Hildys talents include; Pole Dancing, Tap Dancing, Ballet, Jazz singing, cabaret, burlesque, modelling, being a christmas elf, blog writing, producing and many more! She has modelled many shoots with Jessie including being the lady in the lake, waterfall goddess/ nymph, winter fairy in the trees, dancer from the film Suspiria, Persephone, a nudey ghost, magical witch in the woods and many other mysterious beings! 

Most Popular

‘Make Tattooing Safe Again’: Sheffield Based Tattoo Artist Exposed for Indecent Behaviour

 by Emily Fletcher TW: SA, Animal Abuse, Transphobia Photo Credit: @ meiko_akiz uki Recently, an  Instagram account  has been created to provide a  ‘space to safely give a voice to those who want to speak out about the behaviour of one, Sheffield based tattoo artist’. A  total of 40+ posts have been made by the above social media account regarding  one of Sheffield's most popular tattoo artists .  Thankfully, all posts are prefaced with a Content Warning prior to sharing screenshots of the messages that have been sent anonymously to the page. The majority of Content Warnings refer to sexual behaviour, abuse, and sexual assault. It is clear that there is a reoccurring theme within each submission, as many clients appear to have had the same experiences with the tattoo artist. Women, mostly, are being made to feel uncomfortable while being tattooed. One of the most vulnerable positions anyone can be in, tattoo artists should make their clients feel comfortable and safe during the pro

Fashion For a Cause: Brands That Stand with Palestine and the history of fashion as a form of Activism

by Oana-Maria Moldovan For over two months, there has been an ongoing genocide war in Gaza. To simplify a long and horrific issue, the situation that started, on a larger scale, around one hundred years ago, and has only become amplified since October 7th 2023. Taking place around the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and Israel–Lebanon border, the armed conflict is between Israel and Hamas-led Palestinian militant groups.  The problem is about “stolen” land. Said land is seen as an important holy part of both religions involved. But really, how holy can we consider a land to be, if people kill other people for it? It’s important to remember that this genocide is about three things: forced occupation, zionism, and religion. It’s also important to remember what ethnic erasure is. This terrible expresion, also known as cultural or ethnic assimilation, refers to the process by which the distinct cultural or ethnic identity of a particular group is gradually diminished or erased, often due to ext

Now What? The Aftermath of the 'Manic Pixie Dream Girl'

by Susan Moore Here is a bit about me: I am an open, excitable, creative AFAB who is also moderately attractive. I have a unique sense of personal style and a personality that on the surface can only be described as “bubbly” and “quirky”. For this reason, dating is a nightmare. To be sure, I do not have a hard time finding dates or potential suitors. The problems arise when said dates spend some time with me and decide that I am a rare specimen, and the connection they feel with me is “unlike anything they have felt before”. Then, things go one of two ways.  Either a) they decide I am too high maintenance and no longer palatable, or  b) they choose to never look further than the surface and are content to date the idea of me rather than the real me. There is something rather interesting, perhaps funny, about my situation. It is in no way unique. I have met so many people who constantly dealt with the same problem. Even funnier still, is the fact that there is a trope that simultaneousl