Back to the Photographers!!! I love the photographers over at Geek Goddess! Here now is another Great one
A: What was the first convention you went to? What was a lasting memory from that convention?
Kassandra Leigh: My home stomping grounds was a little hole in the wall scifi/fantasy/anime fusion con called I-CON. I loved how close it was and it was a great “get your feet wet” sort of convention that was very low stress. The campus it was held at every year was so pretty – so many spots to take photos in! It was here that I met most of my best friends – so whenever I think of I-CON I think of them(awww aint that cute?!). It was at I-CON that I met my bestie, Creations by this PreHistoric Dance( a frequent assistant on our photoshoots), she gave me an energy drink and a lolipop then proceeded to pose in a huge water fountain in 20 degree weather for the sake of a good shot. Ever since then we have been inseparable!
A: If you could take a time machine back to 13 year old you, what would you tell her about her future?
KL: I think I would remind her she isn’t crazy for stashing her money away in a pink glittery treasure box in the wall? But jokes aside, I think id tell her that its okay to be “the boring friend” who cant go to all the crazy cons or events due to money issues. Horde what cash you can – don’t bother with college and stop putting all your energy into other people’s projects. Focus on building your own empire. Starting with investing in better gear than the sears halogen work lamps I was using at the time lol
A: When do you first remember picking up a camera? What was the first time you thought about it as something you wanted to do professionally?
KL: I first started taking photos to log my wardrobe so that I could better organize. OCD, I know! But somewhere along the line strangers on Deviantart would remark on how artistic my ID photo was and that they really wanted to see more of what I was taking… so I think the friendly push and show of interest in what I was doing from that community was what sparked me. From there I saw it as yet another visual medium I could escape into… that was perhaps a little less messy than painting ^_^;;
A: What insights do you think you bring to cosplay photography as a cosplayer yourself that other photographers are missing?
KL: The fact that I’m pretty well experienced at being on either side of the lens helps a lot with communication! I understand a lot of the insecurities and physical limitations( or lack there of!) of models and can be more aware of ways to make them work for the artistic angle of the shoot. A lot of photographers Iv worked with in the past weren’t noticing simple things like how at a certain angle – the bright (all be it, artistic and interesting ) light accentuated eye bags or that they wouldn’t communicate to twist the body a certain way so that it was more slimming. Sometimes when your only looking at the overall image as a piece of artwork you lose sight of how the model is going to feel when shes looking at the photo. When the model looks at the photo shes also looking at how she looks. Your client should look at the photo and almost not realize its her that’s how freakin’ blown away they are! So I think being aware of both sides makes my job of keeping both of us happy a bit easier.
A: As a photographer over at MyGeekGodess you take a fair amount of nude photography. Is there a difference on how you approach a clothed vs. nude shot? What are the keys in your mind to a good nude shoot?
KL: Frozen peas. The first tip I always tell people is to photograph your model when shes cold or keep something cold to press against her nipples when shooting! It seems very silly but its something iv seen some nude photographs overlook. Puffy warm boobies are just not cute! With that said I think a real key to getting a great photoset with the models at GeekGoddess is having a model who is comfortable with her body. Nervousness and insecurities read in the eyes without a doubt! And many of these sets are 70+ images so its very intensive on the model to have a wide variety of poses to keep the set from being stale. I try and offer things for them to interact with. I’m guilty of shouting the phrase “cuddle with your environment!”.
A: We as a culture, USA, still have trouble accepting the female form for more than its parts. What do you hope to do as a nude photographer and promoter to change this fact?
KL: Some people look at this as an issue of “its art not porn”. Me? I think we need to look even further past that and ask “What is it about porn that is so upsetting for people?”. We are equal parts animal and civilization so the villianization of sexuality just seems silly to me. If my photos lack that “insinuation” or “heat” I think I failed! Sexuality doesn’t always have to be depicted as crude poorly lit cheesie VHS covers. Sets like what we do with GeekGoddess offer the reality that sexual can be enchanting and visually gripping. Nothing about our girls reads as “cheap”( to be read with some proud mama voice LoL)!
A: What should every cosplay do in order to insure good cosplay pictures when working with a photographer?
KL: Shop around! Make sure the photographer your working with consistently delivers photos you enjoy! If you don’t like overly retouched images you shouldn’t go to a photographer that often does that. Communicate with them and ask questions! And never hesitate to bring your own creative ideas to the table when brainstorming.
A: You seem to have a great fascination with Latex, Where did this come from? Why do you feel latex is the best form of expression for you?
KL: I wouldn’t say it is the best form of expression! But I do adore bringing it into my shoots. More than anything Im about the THREE Fs. Fantasy. Fashion. Fetish. If I can bring a bit of all of those things into one image ( at least for my personal work ) im overjoyed. I love the way latex looks and conforms to the body – it has that action figure look that works so well with the cell shading of comic books. It also helps helps that I have an amazing seamstress – Kayla of Vengeance Designs who brings almost all of my own designs to life! The next bit of latex ill be shooting will be my re designs of Luna from Sailor Moon: https://scontent-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/t1/q71/s720x720/1460067_781057435252996_1568661061_n.jpg
A: What were your thoughts on your first nude shoot? How have you changed since that first one?
KL: I started off shooting nudes of myself the moment I turned 18 haha No communication required (Though perhaps a lot of juggling of remotes?)! So it was a horse of a different color once I started shooting other models. I think more than ever I’m seeing each girl responds to different approaches. Of course I’m constantly seeing how improving my equipment and resources is letting me expand on whats possible in the shoots themselves.
A: Why should nerdy girls join My Geek Goddess?
KL: I think of us as a gaggle of free spirits? Bohemian revolutionaries! We like what we like without any apologies and “shame” isn’t a word to be spoken in our house. The entire team is incredibly open minded to a lot of things so its rather easy to make new friends and have some interesting conversations. I mean…what is there not to love about of a group of creatively talented and driven geeks?!Applications to model for Geek Goddess open periodically and if you keep an eye on their facebook fan page: https://www.facebook.com/MyGeekGoddess its always kept up to date!
A: How can cosplayers get in contact with you to secure a photo shoot?
I spend anomalous amounts of time on my FB fanpage which makes it very easy to get a hold of me there!( Even more so if your a fellow night owl! ) However you can always email me at email@example.com if you prefer something a lil more direct!