If you ask any photographer how they started, more often than not they will tell you they ‘practised on friends’ until they developed their portfolio and started charging clients for their services. It’s a nice safe place to hone your craft. They are your friends! They forgive you for out of focus photos that are badly lit, and for making them pose in awkward late 80s ‘cheese’ poses straight out of a JCPennys Studio (because that was MY only experience of a photographer growing up). They are the best test subjects!!
I’ve been admiring and day-dreaming about the ‘Milk Bath’ photography images I have seen all over Instagram/Facebook for months now! I’ve never been one to exactly be on top of trends but this one caught my eye and I’ve been itching to have a go at it!
Now…all I needed was a willing vict…er….pregnant woman! Cue my ‘willing friend’.
The gorgeous Paula is expecting her second child next month and everyone and anyone who knows Paula and her family are over the moon for them! Unfortunately, I was out of country when big brother arrived 7 years ago so I didn’t have the chance to photograph that first bump but I’m here for this one!
I’ve been asking every pregnant lady I know for the last year or so if they would be willing to try this and have had no takers.
Paula and her family live in a beautiful converted steading and have the privilege to own 2 stunning, giant baths to work with! I asked if she would do it and her free spirited self agreed!! Well, it was more of a ‘I don’t mind, sure, whatever you want Melissa’…yes! Willing victim!
All these images are naturally lit by a dormer window and a floor-level window (clever steading conversions) across the room from the bath. I was literally shaking with excitement at the natural light in this bathroom.
In general it was all quite straight forward - cut some flower heads, run a bath and dump a bunch of milk in. Get your human incubator cozy and start clicking.
I wanted the images bright, light and romantic. It’s a departure from my usual darker, matted images but I’ve had loads of fun and luckily my gracious friend likes the images and is happy for me to share them with everyone!
So here’s to ‘Willing Friends’…a photographers best tool! Long may they endure us!!