Continuing my “adventures in” series of model shoot posts, this one is going to be about using a mesh like fabric called tulle in portraits. So what is tulle? Well I’m glad you asked person I just made up so that I could give you an answer to that question. Tulle is a fabric that is usually found in things like tutus or wedding dresses to extend and add volume to them. It’s actually surprisingly cheap compared to similar fabrics out there, only $1.50 per yard at Joann’s Fabric stores. So I ended up getting a bunch of colors as well as black and white to mess around with.
I had a shoot with a model named Nyx Suicide a couple of days ago that I figured would be a great time to get creative and mess around with this tulle I just bought. There wasn’t really any concept going into the shoot, mostly just a mess around and see what happens kind of thing. Of course though, I did think of some things as we started trying out different looks and ways to use the tulle creatively.
Some things worked out really well like the photo above where she laid down on the floor on a black cloth and we layered two different bluish colors over her. It’s also pretty cool that I had the right color to match her hair which I think added that little bit extra to the image. Using the tulle created a kind of sensual feeling to the photo combined with the colors used resulted in a really striking shot. We also tried using a red and black (which turned purple under the red light) set to make a really dramatic, almost etherial photo that gives off a sense of longing and mystery.
Now of course like with anything, some of the things we tried out didn’t work out that well. I asked her to throw the tulle into the air to create drama by adding in an element of fluid motion, but ultimately it didn’t end up working. But hey, if you don’t experiment then you won’t end up with some of the gems like the photos above. There’s so many different things you could try, like using the tulle as a dress, wrapping yourself like a mummy, “hanging" from it, use it as a hammock, a hood and so on. The important thing to take away from this here is that tulle and other fabrics can be used for a really cool creative effect for relatively cheaply too. Try it out for yourself and when you do, let me know how it turns out in the comments or email me DJ@WriteLighting.com. I love seeing the awesome work of others and how everyone tackles their own creative endeavors.