An Interview with Senangelis Photography
On my first look at the covers of Freque Magazine‘s latest issues I could not drag my eyes away from the front cover of volume 1. It was such a sensory overload I wanted to squeal with delight! I thought this White Rabbit cover is fabulous, I must contact the creator for an interview, I must know how this creative’s mind works. I spoke to photographer and owner Carlie of Senangelis Photography who was happy to take the time to answer a few questions for me.
When did you decide to become a photographer? Was it something that has always been a part of your life or did you stumble on it by chance?
I studied photography in year 11, just as an arty subject to fill time. Due to this, my grandfather sent me his old Minolta kit.
I had a friend who wanted to become a model, since I had the camera I put my hand up to shoot some images for him. Around the same time I had won a competition to have my own photos taken so when I went in to have them done I took in the images I had shot for my friend to get a professionals opinion. They offered me a job! Haha!
I’m in awe of “The White Rabbit” Editorial featured in the December issue of Freque Magazine. How did you come up with the original concept? What was your creative process for this shoot?
I was approached by the model and she sent through an idea of a pale girl with ears and blood. As with all good inspiration, we worked together to develop it and make it our own. However, not for one minute did I think we would end up creating an Alice in Wonderland character, nor had we intended to submit it to a publication. Initially, I thought the next step was to add a hoop skirt and ballerina shoes. I have an amazing little group of fellow creatives that I am lucky enough to work with, so with this in mind, I contacted them and not long after, the sisters at Asylum Dollz had crafted the hoop skirt and sourced the ballerina shoes.
During this time I had also decided the Elizabethan collar was a good idea. It took me THREE DAYS to fold and sew that thing. Well worth it, but I don’t think I’ve thrown something across the room quite so many times. We had to beg, borrow and steal for the corset, in the end we were very lucky to have it donated to us for the shoot. It wasn’t until the morning before the shoot that both Des (Asylum Dollz) and I, simultaneously decided that a large fob watch was required and when the model arrived, one of the first things I noticed was her spectacular Cheshire Cat tattoo…It then became apparent for the first time, we were indeed, chasing The White Rabbit.
When someone views your photographs what do you hope that they take away with them?
Inspiration, ideas and possibility. When I look at imagery that suggests other realms or worlds of beauty I am completely captivated. If I could give someone else 5 seconds of that captivation, I would be happy.
Where do you find your inspiration?
Believe it or not, Music. Epic Music. I listen to music at every opportunity I get. And in those hours I conjure or develop ideas in my head. From there I research the concept further to see what other people have done with the same ideas. The music is continued into the editing stage as well and the concept grows even more.
Freque Magazine’s volume one featured another one of your editorials, also gracing the front cover. What other publications do you regularly feature in?
That was amazing. That was my first Magazine publication, and it made the cover!
Senangelis Photography has only been in existence for a couple of years, (having been a retoucher for the past 11 and not touching a camera for nearly 9 years since my first experience as working as a photographer) so for me, to get the cover was totally unexpected and I was stoked! Since that first cover I’ve been lucky enough to also be a part of the Dark Beauty Magazine online streams, accepted for publication by Mystica Magazine and invited to submit to Visual Artistry Magazine. I am always looking to find other publications that promote artists and photographers that fall a little left of center. It’s still very surreal. I’m always blown away when I’m accepted into a publication.
What is your favorite style of photography?
I don’t think I really have a favorite style. Like music, if its good, its good. I guess I lean towards illustrative.
Digital photography and post production editing go hand in hand these days, How far do you think you can push the post production editing before it becomes too much?
Editing is a huge part of what I do. For me, photography was never just capturing the image. It was also where and how far I could take it afterwards. That’s just how I have always worked. The point at which I think I would suggest post has gone to far, is when your model, no longer looks like your model. Maintaining the integrity of your subject’s would be a pretty basic rule for me, unless your intent is to create an other worldly creature etc..
What is your favourite set of images that you have created to date?
Every new set I do is my new favorite, I honestly can’t pick. The first set I did was amazing because it led to so many more, the last set I did was amazing because I had employed techniques learnt from the previous. They are all my favorites!
Who are your favourite photographers? Do they play a part in influencing your work?
I’ve always liked the work of David LaChapelle and his use of colour. I think for the moment he would be my biggest influence as far as using colour is concerned. I like the beauty and candid captures by Ellen Von Unwerth and I LOVE imagery of Eugenio Ecuenco. I’m sure they play some role in influencing my work, but I can’t say that I can tell.
Do you have a favorite, outdoor or studio shoots?
I’ve been in the studio shooting for a couple of years now, and over the holidays I’ve been shooting outside. Both have their benefits and both have their downfalls. I enjoy the control over light that I have in the studio, but I also love the exploring I have to do to work around the light that is available outside. So, no, I don’t think I have a favorite, just a lot to learn about both.
What qualities do you think create the perfect image
There’s a few things I value, one of them being good makeup! Thankfully, Lisa (‘Mon Cherie’ MakeUp) and I both understand how light can effect makeup. Lisa will always surprise me with her little techniques for makeup application and her work makes my job a dream in post.
Good composition, good tonal values and a good environment. There’s nothing worse than a stale or awkward environment, I think the girls and I make a good team, with fun and easy going vibes, and I think with everything combined we can’t help but make something of value.
To view more of Senangelis Photography’s images: