For those that have followed my photographic journey, you will know that I don’t do a lot of model shoots. I am not a commercial photographer nor a model photographer by any means. But photography is photography as far as I am concerned. You control time, light, composition and go with your instincts. The camera will do the rest. That’s my approach for all my photography. For the most part. Please don’t think that I am diminishing the effort and capabilities of enthusiast and professional model photographers. I know many and they are exceptional artists. My work could never come close to theirs – hence why I am not a model photographer.

And again if you have been following my photographic journey you will have read from time to time about my interactions with The ORP. That is not his real name (obviously) nor is he an imaginary friend. He assures me he is not. The Overrated Photographer (The ORP as I like to name him) is a mate of mine that used to be a Fujifilm shooter but made a huge mistake a little while ago and jumped ship to Sony. But he is a really solid mate and he has been a tremendous support to me in tough times. Please check out his blog site here where you can read many of his angry rants.

It was The ORP who organised my very first model shoot and you can check out my blog about that experience here. The ORP organised a new shoot for us which took place a couple of weeks ago. We met in Melbourne on Southbank. Southbank is a lovely stretch of river-front restaurants and bars and has a groovy bridge that crosses over to the North Bank and Flinders Street Train Station. The ORP had organised a model named Akii to meet us at this spot. She arrived on time and we made our introductions. The ORP had already considered some places to shoot and was open to suggestions from myself (a rare occurence) and of course Akii.

We stayed in the south-side river-front precinct. The first location was just on the other side of the Prince’s Bridge in the Alexander Gardens. Akii wore traditional Vietnamese dress that was mostly white and like silk. Along with a bamboo straw hat. We used the setting of the river in the background to get a great composition. We also used the nearby boat-houses and gardens to get further shots of Akii. She was great and has done a lot of modeling before – this sort of modeling as well as a lot of hair and make-up modelling. She had a great set of poses and facial expressions. Unfortunately it is the middle of winter in Melbourne and Akii was wearing a silk think garment. She was getting pretty cold as the sun went down.

We moved back along the river to Southgate – a three level shopping centre. Akii took a moment to get changed into street clothes ready for the next part of our shoot. We walked further along the river to the Evan Walker Bridge. This is a pedestrian bridge that crosses the river. It has great views of Flinders Street Station lit up at night. This was our next location. From the bridge we walked along streets that ran parallel to the river in search of interesting settings and lighting. We chose on this shoot to not bring in flash units at all. The only piece of lighting was a Godox LC500 Light Wand. We used this just to add a little bit of drama to some of the shots. This was a new toy for The ORP too so we got to experiment with is. Other than that, we relied on street lights, shop and restaurant neon signs and whatever was available.

Our last destination was Playtime at Crown Casino. Playtime is an arcade centre that also has ten pin bowling and a bar. The arcade itself turned out to be a great location as there were so many arcade games and machines that were lit with many coloured lights. Some even allowed Akii to stand inside a tunnel while the lights changed around her. Unfortunately, I didn’t take any images at Playtime. I was getting tired of living in The ORP’s shadow. Litterally. He is really tall. He was in his element and from the shots he took that night, there are some amazing compositions. As I mentioned, this was our last destination and we made our farewells.

All of the images in this blog were shot with the Fujifilm X-T3 and the Fujifilm XF50mmF2. The ORP was shooting with his Sony gear. Please take the time to check out his site here. Also, take a look at Akii’s Instagram here. If you are considering doing a model shoot then you could follow our example. Akii was good enough to dedicate an evening of time and in return we have given her a number of shots to add to her modelling portfolio. It was a lot of fun especially with someone so charismatic and inspiring as Akii. Happy shooting.