Lately, I had the opportunity to hang out and do a short photoshoot with the awesome Brian Ishiba (Ishibiii)! I had seen his video blogs and singing/guitar videos on Youtube since a while back, but finally got up the courage to contact him recently. There are so many cool Youtubers in Tokyo, and I really love having the chance to connect and collaborate with a few of them. It was great hanging out with Brian since he's also a fellow Californian! Very cool guy and easy to talk to :)
The result of me telling Brian to look emo and gangsta:
Totally a natural!
There were these humongous shiny black crows around the park, and they kept cawing continuously. I think Brian's pointing at some of them here! If you've never seen the crows in Japan, they really are gigantic.
Brian, thank you so much for photoshooting with me! It was really fun and relaxing just chatting and wandering around outside on such a nice day.
Brian mentioned here in his video that he thinks modeling is hard, and I just wanted to follow up on the topic a bit. For many people, especially those who aren't used to being taken or don't normally enjoy having their photos taken, modeling can definitely be a difficult task. However, I think Youtubers might be slightly more aware of their impressions and how they appear to an audience, and especially from seeing Brian's videos, I like the natural yet expressive way he presents himself. As you can see from the photos above from our shoot, there's such a wide range of emotions and expressions - I love seeing that in a model!
I've worked with quite a few models up to now, and there have been some who kind of tighten up and find it tougher to open up, and some who completely relax and chat with me easily, letting their personalities shine through. Of course it always depends on the type of photography project - certain brands or magazine editorials may need a certain role played, a certain emotion conveyed - for those, the model has to become basically an actor or actress, but in still form.
However, I really love it the most when I can capture photos of someone being just as they are. This is why, in some senses it's really fun and refreshing to do photoshoots with friends, with people not aiming to be someone else when they are in front of my camera.
When you think of models, you may instantly think of those in fashion magazines who pose with dynamic, gorgeous poses, shiny hair flowing, studio lights shaping their contours and lines. If you think about that kind of "modeling", it may seem like the "being yourself" type of modeling I mentioned above would be way easier. But on the contrary, I've come to see that it's not easy at all. When you take away the role, the expectation... what is there to lean on, to become? For many models, I've heard it's a lot more difficult to model as yourself in front of the camera, rather than as something else.
So, Brian, thank you and many kudos to you for doing a wonderful job! :)
Brian's Youtube Channel:
Brian's Tumblr: http://brianthecool.tumblr.com/
His Twitter: https://twitter.com/Ishibiii