Model: Lauren WK.
LC: When did you first decide to get into photography?
VP: I've always been attached to cameras and photographs. When I was 18, and a freshman at SCAD, I was required to take an intro to photography course for my major, which was design. That course opened my eyes to how much I loved to photograph! I couldn't put my camera down. I spent long hours in the dark room, and just felt like I never wanted to do anything else. I had always planned to become a fashion designer, but at that moment I realized that I wanted to be a fashion photographer. There was a magic to it that nothing compared to.
LC: What photographers have been a source of inspiration?
VP: When I first started shooting I focused on a lot of dark imagery, and the contrast of light and dark. I shot on film then, and was influenced by Sally Mann and Diane Arbus. Once I started photographing more, and developing my skills toward fashion, I fell in love with the masters Henri Cartier-Bresson, Helmut Newton, Ellen Von Unwerth, Steven Meisel, Pierre et Gilles, and Annie Leibovitz.
Model: Eidolona. Wardrobe: Electra Design Corsets.
LC: What do you view as the most important aspect of a photo shoot?
VP: The talent! No matter how much you plan for a shoot, plans always change when you're actually in it. The talent is what makes a shoot shine. It's about having a really artistic stylist, a model(s) that is enthusiastic and willing to try new things, and a photographer that knows how to make it come together in one vision. What you're seeing at the end, is a culmination of all of the creatives hard work coming together.
LC: Do you have any pet peeves when it comes to working with models?
VP: Models are artists muses. I can't do what I do without them! The only thing that can bother me when working with a model is when they aren't open to trying new things, and taking on direction. The ideas an artist has are the basis for everything that they do, and models should always be open to helping the artist achieve their vision.
LC: What would be your dream photo shoot?
VP: That's too tough to answer! I have thousands of dream photo shoots stored in my head!
LC: Who is your favorite designer?
VP: My favorites are definitely Alexander McQueen and Vivienne Westwood.
Model: Miss Voodoo Valentine.
LC: Why do you think there is such a huge interest in pin-up photography these days?
VP: I think the interest for men is pretty simple, it's all sex-appeal. For women, I think they enjoy seeing a wider variety of models, in all shapes and sizes, being portrayed in a glamourous way.
LC: Name the one person, present or past, that you would love to photograph and why?
VP: Honestly, Dita Von Teese is at the top of the list. You can't beat her glamour, style, and savvy. I saw her perform at the Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles years ago, and after that performance there was no one else I wanted in front of my lens. She's dazzling in person, and can make every movement picture perfect.
Model: Elegy Ellem. MUA: StaceFACE.
LC: What do you have planned for the future?
VP: Currently I'm shooting some new pin-ups for a gallery show at Sig's Lagoon in Houston in February. I also have a great deal of other projects in the works, and hope that I can share what those are soon!
Graphic Design + Photography