Photography by Angela McConnell
This year has been a little crazy in many aspects – my photography started to take up more and more of my spare time while my actual real job also got busier and busier. Its been a bit of a juggling act at times but its all been worth it in the end. Here is an account of my life in pictures for 2010
I started toying with the idea of doing a bit more studio photography. I had been a member of Kommune for a few months so I asked Vesper White if she would volunteer to be my model for the day at Terry’s Kommune studio in Alphington. It was one of the hottest days of summer but Vesper was an absolute trooper and along with Jake Burrell (hairstylist) I think we created something awesome.
January also saw me return to Burlesque Bar to shoot a couple of shows including one with the delightful Rosy Rabbit
February saw me shoot for the first time in my home studio. Geoff and I bought a house in West Footscray in September 2009 and we moved in late November. We had only been in for about 2 weeks before heading to NZ for Xmas so it took us a while to settle in and get everything sorted. During this time, I had done a bit of research and discovered some beautiful work by George Hurrell back in the 30’s and 40’s…and so began my experiments with old Hollywood glamour beginning with the gorgeous Rosy Rabbit.
And Samantha Diamond
Also in February, I realised a long awaited project recreating a homage to Zeigfeild Follies photographer Alfred Cheney Johnston. Again Jake Burrell did some amazing work on Red’s super long hair to evoke some 20’s styling.
Red was amazing as a folly and I couldn’t have been happier with the outcome.
It also saw a return to some live performance work at Burlesque Bar – this time with the amazing Lux St Sin. Needless to say, February was quite busy!
In March I played some more in the studio, more black and white work with Kerry X
And went on location to the beach with a fellow photographer Brett and Lux St Sin on a steamy Melbourne evening to try some outdoor lighting. This image was subsequently featured in Inked Australia/NZ.
We got back into the Victorian Rollery Derby League’s Season 5 with Burn Your Brass. Dolls Au-Go-Go vs Toxic Avengers.
Again in the studio to shoot some more Old Hollywood Glamour with the beautiful Katie Pink.
Also in March I shot a benefit performance for Rosy Rabbit. The show was to fund her trip to London Burlesque Week. After an awesome show, Rosy was unfortunately unable to attend due to a very unruly Icelandic volcano shutting down airports around the world. London’s loss but Rosy went on to shine later on in the year.
Back to the Kommune studios to shoot the delightful Dolores Daquiri – again on an absolute scorcher!
April saw the advent of some very dark Cabaret/Burlesque with the debut performance of Atrocity at Burlesque Bar.
A visit from Brisbane based band Bertie Page Clinic saw me shooting at The Old Bar in Fitzroy for their show.
VRDL celebrated their birthday with a Birthday Bash which saw the Dead Ringer Rosies take on the Toxic Avengers
I finished up April with a shoot for The Signet Bureau with a 20’s theme
March and April also saw me away from home for 4 weeks to work onsite in Brisbane – not entirely sure looking back how I fit everything in!
The Footscray follies took hold again with Kelly Ann Doll bringing out the essence of the Zeigfield girl. Jake Burrell created his hair magic again and Jenelle Marie recreated the dark make up. This shoot was a challenge as I had been attacked by one of my cats the previous day and bitten in 15 places on my right hand including through my trigger finger. One hand was blown up like a balloon and the other arm was in agony from the tetanus shot. Good times!
In May I took a deep breath and stepped in front of the lens in a portrait shoot swap with photographer Rachel Mia of Matchless Snapshots. It was very intimidating working with another photographer and especially since I am not known to enjoy being on the other end of the camera. Rachel’s hair and make up was done by MUA Kaysia-Joy.
I went on location with Red Devotchkin and Bertie Page to the chilly Fitzroy streets for an impromptu shoot. These girls were so much fun and you would never know how cold it actually was!
June was so much fun! In the midst of one of the coldest Melbourne winters on record, the first annual Australian Burlesque Festival came along to heat things up!
Sexy Circus Sideshow
The Big Tease
I had an awesome shoot with Kelly Ann Doll showcasing designs for Michelle Boyde – my first shoot with a fashion flavour. The hair, makeup and styling was all done my Michelle.
Also in June I had the pleasure of shooting Clairy Baby Brown and the Bangin’ Rackettes for their debut album cover. Fun, fun shoot with some crazy shots appearing at the end of the night!
In early July Clairy Baby Brown and the Bangin’ Rackettes held a fundraising performance for their upcoming Australian tour supporting The Cat Empire. Hot show, hot audience, hot band!
VRDL next bout was an interstate affair. Double Dissolution saw the VRDL B team take on Ballarat and the VRDL A team battle Canberra. VRDL had just come off and amazing tournement at the Great Southern Slam where they had beaten out teams from around Australia and NZ to be overall winners!
The second installment of the Atrocity series premiered at Burlesque Bar.
I had the pleasure of photographing one the most gorgeous boys on the planet. Baby Valentine Cash was 3 weeks old for this shoot and was such a darling.
Tableu Vivant was a performance installation by Clare St Clare and saw the participants taking on the persona of dolls in a scene.
Friday the 13th of August saw the return of Gorelesque. After a successful show the previous year, Gorelesque moved to a new larger venue with more acts and a fantastic movie trailer.
In August I had the opportunity to attend of one of Peter Coulson’s Continuous Lighting workshops at his Koukei Studios. Such an awesome experience and was great to be able to learn from someone who is very generous with their time and knowledge.
Vixxy Valentine joined me in the studio to work on some more old school Hollywood black and white images.
VRDL came back in September with Leader of the Pack between Dolls Au-Go-Go and the Toxic Avengers. The tail end of the season was looming with the battle for the grand final spots underway.
I returned to live performance for Shimmy Shake, produced by Dolores Daquiri and Sapphira. The show is held monthly at Red Bennies and includes resident artists alongside guest performers.
The third installement of Atrocity was unveiled with a dash of Insanity
In October I had the worst flu I have ever experienced. I ended up having to take over a week off work and as a result my housewarming gift for the new VRDL Warehouse was a box of tissues!
The warehouse is a new training facility for the VRDL and will allow them to have a dedicated space for fresh meat intakes and training. Looking forward to seeing a bevy of new skaters on the track at the end of 2011!
Mojo Juju and the Snake Oil Merchants absolutely brought the house down at Red Bennies – I have never seen a crowd like it before in my life! Excellent show and I am now a proud owner of the album Sellin’ You Salvation
Another live performance in October with the debut performance of La Burlesque Tableaux at Miss Libertines. The show was the brainchild of SheShe Velour and Ginger Lea Rye and included a corsetry fashion show at half time.
Things got a little hot in the studio when Kelly Ann Doll and Tank came around to shoot some promotional images for their upcoming duet at the Hellfire Club.
I also had the opportunity to do some experiments with some new lighting techniques I had learned at the Koukei workshops
My big project came to fruition in October with a Book Launch at Red Bennies for Burlesque a Retrospective. It was also the farewell performance for Samantha Diamond who was a co-collaborator on the book project.
November brought a very busy month for the VRDL – first up with Movember Madnes, the last bout before the Grand Final. Dead Ringer Rosies took on the Dolls Au-Go-Go
And then the GRAND FINAL and quite possibly my most favourite bout in my history with the VRDL for a couple of reasons. First of all the change in venue to the Flemington Showgrounds which is only a 10 minute drive from home, the amazing light in the venue even though it was possibly the most disgusting weather Melbourne had seen all year, and the most awesome shot a girl could ever wish to capture. My only down for the night – my team lost, but hey you cant have everything!
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So this rounds up my year in 2010. It’s been interesting revisiting it all and I look back and wonder how I managed to pack it all in some months! I can only hope that I have the same amount of fun this year!
What’s on the cards? Well I am doing more workshops in 2011, you cannot and should not ever stop learning! An 8km run in May (for those who know me well this will be a massive achievement!), maybe an overseas holiday???
I hope you all have had a fantastic 2010 and if not, that 2011 becomes everything you wish it to be!