Swords and Sorcery
This is an extension of my Women in Chains project, but with a more specific theme of depicting the models as warriors or mages with weapons and magical devices. The goal is to create images reminiscent of Boris Vallejo, Michael Whelan and other great fantasy artists, but with my own interpretation and style.
About six years ago, while searching for some body jewelry to accent some festival costumes for my wife, I came across a company called Chainmail & More. The two artists that run the company produce wonderful works of art to adorn the human body. Everything is hand-made after you place your order and their designs are both unique and creative.
The Chainmail costumes they create coordinate perfectly with the Sword and Sorcery concept and so I decided to create a series of images featuring various models whose outfits and looks are coordinated with matching sword or enchanted device. The idea is to create a series of images showing women as strong, mystical figures with innate power and beauty.
Each model will pose with a variety of chain outfits, swords and mystical objects based on a collaborative process where the photographer and model work together to determine what best suits the model's personality and looks. The first images of this series will be shot in a studio setting with various other props and backdrops, but the final images will be retouched to enhance the mystical/fantasy effect and may include composited backgrounds and other elements rather than the minimally retouched images seen on this page.
These images will contain a significant degree of nudity, as can be seen from the example images included here. If you're not comfortable with tasteful nudity, then this isn't a project for you. One of the key goals of this project is to contrast the metal chains and edges with the model's skin to enhance the projection of feminine beautry and power.
In the warmer months of 2010, I'll be working with the same or different models to create similar images but concentrating on using the images in a non-studio setting such as an urban environment, abandoned buildings, and in wooded or rocky locations. This will add more challenge and variety to the project and will present a different feel to the final images.
This will be a fun and exciting project with an opportunity for some great images for a model's portfolio. It is a tightly budgeted project because I would like to allow as many models to participate as possible and I have a significant outlay of capital in both the chains, swords and other props so my preference would be to work with models who have an artistic interest in the shoot as opposed to those who are simply seeking a paying gig. That said, if you've got a look I think will go well with the theme, I'm certainly open to negotiating some cash reimbursement.
You can see more images below as well as a sampling of some of the swords that will be used for the project. I'm adding more swords and knives over the next few weeks, so if you're interested in bringing out your inner warrior or mage, I'm sure I'll have something to match. You can use this link to see a portfolio of completed Sword & Sorcery Images.
Final Thoughts; If you've come across this page via my web site or my blog, and you're interested in participating, please don't hesitate to contact me. There aren't any specific age, height, weight or body type requirements that you need to meet to be a part of this on-going and long term project. If you want to model, that's great. I'd love to work with new and experienced models that want to add something different to their portfolio or who are looking for a bit of paid work (provide the rates are reasonable and fit within my budget). I'm also always looking for new places to shoot, so if you've got a bit of property you think would make a good location and you'd like to allow the use of it for a shoot, let me know. If you're a Make-up Artist or a hairdresser with some ideas you'd like to try out - let me know. It can be great fun to experiment.
The only caveat I have for working in or with my project is that you be wiling to share your ideas and collaborate with me in the creative process and that you not be afraid of tasteful nudity or glamorous images.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me for answers and you can see more example images below. Just click on them so see a larger version.
©2006 Mark Cohran, All Rights Reserved
Latest Revision: December 18, 2009