Photo of the Week
This is from a shoot that I consider a “turning point” in my work with Rav Brar, who has been a consistent collaborator of mine for 2011. We wanted to really challenge ourselves and push our creative boundaries and we got the perfect opportunity when I approached model, Monica Johal, for a shoot. Monica is a well known face in the Toronto East indian fashion scene, walking runway shows and appearing in magazines. She had worked with a couple of my friends and I was enamoured with her look, she reminds me of an Indian actress named Kangana Ranaut. I normally never approach a model for a project unless we know each other, but in this case I made an exception. I was really pleased when she replied that she was also interested. She had worked with Rav before so I knew they already had a great comfort level together. My friend Navi J works as a visual merchandiser for Le Chateau and Costa Blanca and had already told me she is available as a stylist. So we asked her to collaborate on this project.
The idea to work with a horse initially came from Monica who provided me with contacts to different farms and ranches. I got lucky with the friendly people at Claireville Ranch in Brampton who readily agreed and provided us with Willow, the gorgeous white horse featured in this shoot. Navi and Rav discussed how to approach the styling and came up with the idea to do a boho-hippy chic look.
Monica was a trooper during the shoot, you can’t see it in the shots that I picked but it was March and there was snow on the ground and a chill in the air. Still she was as determined as I was to do something totally unexpected and she braved the elements to get the shots. In between setups she donned a winter coat to stay warm, but I was very happy with her level of commitement and variety of shots. We had over 50 frames to choose from, these 4 are definitely my favourites. Once we finished and took a look, the four of us (Rav, Navi, Monica and I) were so pleased with ourselves that we immediately set up another shoot together (I will post those in the future).
This shoot opened up a lot of doors for me, people started to take me seriously as a photographer and knew I had the talent and eye for great pictures (although I have always had those attributes, thats why I am a photographer). I will always look back at this shoot with a lot of pride and have continued to push my creative concepts since this shoot.