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Bride of Frankenstein - A New Vision

Bride of Frankenstein

Quite a while after the first Bride shoot, my second exploration of the Bride of Frankenstein aimed to be a lot more visceral and disturbing. Georgia's shoot was all about beauty and innocence, but this second shoot had a much darker intention. I explained to the model, Debbie, that this Bride was created by a mad scientist as a sexual playmate for the Frankenstein Monster. She was just a living, breathing sex doll, stitched together from various dead body parts for no other purpose than to give the original Monster a mate. She is a victim of misogynistic desire, a horrific figure of femininity engineered by an insane pervert. This time the robe was coming off, and we would see all the patchwork of flesh and limbs, as well as the enforced eroticism, and the ultimate tragic ending as she rips out her broken heart.

Debbie was the perfect choice for this shoot. Not only is she a great model, but she has endless patience for very long, time consuming makeup work. As a regular model for full body painters, she can stand for many hours being painted and still have enough energy at the end for a full shoot. The makeup process was incredibly time consuming, lasting almost ten hours. I started by mapping out scars on her body with a makeup pencil, and then sculpting and blending the scars using silicone. All the scars were sculpted and applied on the day, which took so long that I ended up actually leaving some of them unmade. Had I made the whole lot that I intended, it could have been a thirteen hour makeup! I chose to concentrate only on front-facing scars and left some of the back scars. Originally, I was going to shoot her from all angles but time forced a bit of a change of plan on this. After the scars were made, a full body paint was done. Debbie has some huge and very impressive tattoos climbing up her thighs, so these all had to be hidden with Derma Blend prior to the body paint. The paint was fairly simple, using a pale, sickly flesh colour and then airbrushing dark red hues around all the scars.

We had a massive headache with the hair this time. Debbie's hair was not suitable for the Bride so we had to rely on wigs. Our first attempt was using a technique recommended to us by Marian Mantovani, an extremely gifted cosplay creative. Her technique involved hair donuts and afro extensions, and it's is a remarkable technique which looks outstanding when done properly, but we just couldn't make it work. Luckily, Claire came to the rescue and fashioned a blonde cave woman wig into more or less the right shape and we used that instead. It did mean I had to Photoshop the hell out of the images to make the hair look right but it all came together beautifully in the end.

By the end of the makeup, we were all very tired and it was getting very late but we hadn't captured a single shot yet. I don't quite know where we got the energy but we managed a fantastic shoot. I tried to keep the lighting dramatic throughout, using only soft boxes arranged in a ring around the model with one overhead boom. Debbie's poses were based on confusion and mild eroticism. The character has no self awareness and she is just expressing her femininity because she's been engineered to. At times she is looking at herself and wondering what the hell her body is. It was a fascinating theme to explore.

Bride of Frankenstein Bride of Frankenstein
Bride of Frankenstein Bride of Frankenstein

Bride of Frankenstein Bride of Frankenstein Bride of Frankenstein

Thanks for reading folks. Keep loving horror :)

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