Time heals all wounds

© Marius Budu | All Rights Reserved

Last year was my least productive year in terms of shooting. This was mainly due to the fact that I had two major exhibitions to organize and I was also traveling for a big part of the year. When I was in Copenhagen for my second exhibition in October there was one thing I was almost looking forward to more than the exhibition itself – shooting with Christel and Camilla. I had seen a video of these two girls performing together and I was just blown away. They are acrobats, contortionists, gymnasts, dancers, you name it. The idea of shooting with two performers that have ample experience working together was very exciting. We met to talk about the shoot and we decided that since we also wanted to shoot some pole poses it would be best to shoot in their studio. I rented equipment, found a great assistant, Andreas (who had experience with shooting performers), got all the materials necessary, came up with a great set-up, everything was set.

The day before the shoot things started to go sour, we had to postpone the shoot, re-book the equipment, assistant, and find another time where we were all free. It might not sound like much, but I had a pretty ample set-up in mind so it was a huge hassle. Luckily, it all got sorted out and we were set to shoot once again. Here I was, in the studio, about to do my first shoot in more than 6 months, had two fantastic models and something just wasn’t sparking. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it but the magic just wasn’t there. This had never happened to me before so I just tried to keep things going and keep my team motivated. It worked, and eventually we managed to get some pretty great shots. Working with Camilla and Christel was wonderful and their ability to combine their figures was spectacular. That feeling of near-failure kinda stuck with me though and it ended up leading to me not producing new work for quite some time. Every time I sat down to process some of the images, I just wasn’t feeling it.

Last night, there was something boiling inside me. It had been months, where I hadn’t processed almost any of my images. I had to dive back into it and give this another shot. Then, MAGIC happened once again. I processed the first image and it was one of my best so far. What happened? How could this be? All of a sudden, these images I was almost ready to give up on months ago were coming to live in a wonderful way. It occurred to me that the shoot and the images had nothing to do with my frustration. I was simply in the middle of too much at the time of the shoot and when things started to go wrong, my brain just didn’t register the shots as being good because I was unhappy with the circumstances. Luckily, as the old saying goes, “time heals all wounds”. I always give myself some “distance” from the images after I shoot. The main reason for this is so that I can have a less biased overview of the image set before making a selection for processing. In this case, that distance became the key element to being able to see the greatness I was hoping to capture going into this shoot.

I now proudly present to you with four images from the shoot. I really believe that they are some of my strongest images to date and it feels good to be able to say that.


(Click the thumbnails for full-view)

Models: Christel & Camilla
Assistant on the shoot: Andreas Bergmann Steen

1 Comment

  1. March 27, 2013 - Reply

    Marius asked me to write a second perspective on the shoot. I was the assistant on the shoot and first of all, thank you Marius for giving me the chance to suck up tons of knowledge and inspiration by hanging out at your shoot, and carrying stuff around and such.

    I can actually really relate to the not-feeling-it energy Marius describe. I mean, if I put aside the whole part where I was dazzled by being at the shoot, all the knowledge I tried to assimilate and the generous serving of anxiety-about-performing that I helped myself to, there was a definite feeling of hmm, something. I think I’d describe it as a slight awkwardness. Don’t get me wrong, everybody was super pleasant to work with, very nice people all around. The subjects were ridiculously talented and pliable. However, one of the things I picked up from the experience is that Marius, to his credit, kept pushing forward, trying more ideas, compositions, light setups etc. And I felt suuuper gratified experiencing that… hard-to-describe somewhat uncomfortable search for the right image in a shoot that sometimes happens. And I think it is part of being an artist that one has to push through these weird periods of not really feeling it, and being unsure about why one isn’t feeling it.

    Another great lesson here, I’d say, is going back over old shoots sometimes. One’s vision develops, life-situations have a massive impact on how we see and experience things and so on, and there might be gems hidden all around us, the four images presented here certainly attests to the fact that shoots that felt like a losing uphill battle at the time, with mediocre results. Might hold completely wonderful images that you just weren’t able to see at the time due to all sorts of other stuff impacting your life. Anyways, I’m getting long winded, a tendency I have 😛 So for the final word, I’ll say thank you so much for the experience Marius, and I look forward to doing some paper-whispering with some horrifyingly whimsical fabric another time 🙂

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