Monday, October 1, 2012

A whole new level of photography...AND modeling.

So there was this WI photographer I was told I need to know...We became facebook friends, sent a few messages back and forth, and I became a huge fan of his work instantly--absolutely phenomenal talent! It took a few months, but finally in August 2011, Andrew Kufahl and I met in person for the first time.

We had talked about working together prior to the new haircut, but afterwards, I was on a break... I didn't feel comfortable in front of a camera, and I had no clue how to style this butchered 'do. He told me to just let him know when I was ready. Well what the heck, let's just meet and then that part is over with, we can discuss shooting together after that. We met up for lunch, and talked and talked and talked. Andrew is pretty dang quiet, and I can be too, but man, get us talking about what we're passionate about and we can't stop! By the end of that first meeting, Andrew was going to have me assist/model for one of his 365 shots...It would be his second to last shot of the project. Later, I was asked to be involved with the very last shot as well. Honored, to say the least.

In all honesty, this was the first shoot I was actually excited about since the hair situation...I almost had that passion and confidence a weird way... considering how nervous I was. But this guy shoots sort of like how I would shoot my self-portraits... where it is more about the emotion (or story), rather than the model and he'd invest HOURS into a shoot to ultimately walk away with ONE shot. This was so unlike the usual model shoots I was used to. My face was probably not going to be shown, and I was probably going to have a wig on... Perfect! And I got to work with someone who I have become a huge fan of over the past half a year or so. :)

I met Andrew at a train station about 45 minutes from where I lived... around 10pm at night. I got some styling help from a model friend. It was absolutely fascinating watching how these pieces of art were created. I had done many self portraits, but not anywhere near this level. His attention to detail and focus just blew me away. On top of that, he was also very polite and aware of "the model"...making sure I'm ok, that I'm comfortable, that I don't break an ankle walking through rocks/train tracks, that I'm ok running over and over and over for THE heels. I don't think I got to bed until after 4am that night. I couldn't believe that this guy was doing this every single day, for an entire year! This was the final image from that night...

Day 364 of 365 - She knew just as well as he did, that he was never coming back...

The next day, I drove back down to Andrew's neck of the woods for the very last image from his 365 project. He had a friend along to assist and take some behind the scenes video. Now this is where I stepped into a totally new world of modeling... If you look through Andrew's work, he has a wide range of emotions, subject matter, poses, expressions, techniques, etc. This particular shot had quite a bit of humor to it, not something I've really ever modeled... On top of that, I needed to not be so focused on model "prettiness" and posing, but full fledged emotion... and exaggerated emotion! What a challenge. I had to let go. I had to get out of my comfort zone in so many ways... Here I had just met this guy, and I had to pretend to be his girlfriend consoling him while he got a tattoo on his tush... What a great way to get to know someone, have 'em drop their drawers while real customers of the tattoo shop walk by...and as I'm just inches away from his face, I had to make the goofiest expression I've ever made for a photo, all while trying not to burst into a giggle fit while he made a ridiculous face...NOT easy! And I failed several times. (Seriously, look at these expressions?! How can ya keep a straight face?!)

Day 365 of 365 - The End
While this isn't the prettiest picture of me, it taught me so many things, and I am so very thankful that Andrew included me on these two shots! He changed the way I thought about photography, story telling, self-portraits, and modeling after these two shoots. 

Andrew and I have worked together quite often in the past year. We realized we view photography and art in a very similar way. I remember after our first meeting, I dubbed him my "photography soul mate"...I have "clicked" well with photographers before and have worked with a handful of them numerous times, lovin' every second of it... but this was different. We do a different type of photography and modeling. There are plenty of stories to tell and even more photos to show from my work with Andrew, so stay tuned!

To see more of Andrew's work: (including candids, BTS videos, other projects, etc) or

To see/order Andrew's 365 book: www.blurb/com/bookstore/detail/2505492 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Nicole! So wonderful to relive these days, and how we first met. I look forward to many more adventures and photos with you :)