Bon Appétit !

Over the past few months, I have shot quite a lot fashion. My true passion, the Still Life work has kind of been put to the side mainly due to opportunities that came across. That is why I have decided to dust it off and shoot some new work. I’ve seen makeup shots many times, in a way you could say its been overdone, but for some reason I always wanted to shoot it! It could be simply because I wanted to destroy something so fragile but other than that, I had a feeling that I could do it differently, I wasn’t exactly how but I knew I could.

In the morning I woke up, had a plan of what to buy for the shoot, later on that day me and my stylist bought all of the makeup we needed and shortly after that we were in the studio trying out different compositions! As for the products that we used, we had the most random selection so instead of listing all of them, I’ll just show you a photo:



Makeup Brushes, wipes, nail vanishes , several different makeup sets as well as some shampoos and moisturises. You can also see two plates, we weren’t sure which one we will be using but in the end we made a decision to use the circle which is more typical shape so that everyone can relate to it and understand what we did. The second plate was used for practicing and experimenting with makeup, which helped us to understand how each makeup behaves when its being put on the plate. Very quickly we came across few issues…One, the shampoo doesn’t like hot lights, it just turns into a water like solution which makes it very hard to control, so for the ‘blue’ plate we had to take extra care but do it relatively quickly at the same time! Second, completely opposite, the pink nail vanish just drys too quickly because of the same issue-hot lights (mainly the modelling lights)

Above you can see a quick video that shows some workflow progress.

What I would truly recommend is to have someone with you on your set, a second person will help out big time. In my case I was lucky enough to have a stylist who understands the idea and a message of a composition which I lack. But don’t forget that you are the photographer, your input counts, if you want a specific look, specific colours, let them know, its their job to work with you!

Have fun. Don’t forget that this is the reason why we all shoot, because we enjoy it.  Be brave and don’t be scared of mistakes, failure is a good thing but in this case, you can’t fail, its a personal project so nothing to worry about, there is no client behind your back watching you, if something goes wrong, clean the plate and move on, try something different! Or do what we did, just get another plate and experiment!


Here you can also see the lighting setup in case you wonder, It was fairly simple, , we used two Profoto strobes , one with a Magnum reflector which recently I’m falling in love with more and more! On the other side we had a bare strobe with a soft white diffusing panel positioned at an angle to give us a beautiful long highlight on the bottom of the plate:

And here are the final results!

Blue-Makeup-Plate-1GreenPruple-Makeup-Plate-1 Red-Makeup-Plate-1

I won’t be going into the post production side of the shoot since there wasn’t much of it and it was fairly easy. However I do want to add that I will be carrying on with the whole ‘makeup plate’ theme since the combinations are endless and its just fun to do.  You can find higher resolution along with some closeups on my Behance site:

in the mean time, make sure to follow me on twitter: @dareks93

as well as Like my FB Page!:

Thanks a lot and have a good one!


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