Monthly Archives: May 2014

Rachelle Summers

It’s funny but every time I work with Rachelle Summers I always end up saying ‘next time we’ll do location’ and yet here we are back in the studio, but I’m not complaining!

I brought in a bunch of props n stuff to play around with, however I was forced to drink the champagne in order to get the empty bottle ~hic~ s’life can be shoo hard shumtimes ~hic burp~ :-




Below is the image that has been stolen the most, see previous blogs.

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Colour nudes…flippen ‘eck!…what’s going on here?!!

Nete DSC_1185-Edit


And some rosary beads to play with…sacrilege I know!!

DSC_1188-Edit Le Rosarie

So next time we do location Rachelle….maybe 😉

Yay!! for Rachelle Summers….a first class model who always delivers quality work. Or as she says, not bad for a Geordie Bird!


Lulu Lockhart

I was asked to organize more studio day shoots from St Andrews PS members and as it was looming up to Xmas 2013 I decided that it would be best to get the holiday season out of the way first, and so it was that Lulu Lockhart was the first model of the year. Right from the word go she excelled and wow’d the photographers that booked her. This time we used a black backdrop, trickier but more rewarding when you get the light right. By the time I got everyone through their slots I was a bit tired and goodness knows how Lulu felt, she must have been exhausted. Anyways despite all that we got some fine images :-


The chair has now become a bit of a challenge for models, to see who can come up with an unusual pose using a simple chair.

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Then on to some floor work…..







DSC_0405-Edit-2 Lulu in Saffron DSC_0430-Edit DSC_0459-Edit

Luu had some wicked clothes and stuff in her case……we used a large overhead honeycomb light…and to be honest I’m still not sure about it, however it worked pretty well here.

Red Velvet DSC_0554-Edit DSC_0580-Edit Lulu


And then all too soon time was up, we had a bit of a scramble round to get back to the train station but we got there in plenty of time for ….erm the bus!…..yes the trains had been cancelled. In one of those bizarre situations where the buses were used for the east coast line between Edinburgh and Dundee. Lulu did remarkably well on the day and I would highly recommend her to anyone…simples


Kinpurnie Hill

So sometime in September 2013 was the day of the joint shoot with Tim Pile and Chrissie Red, and after much location hunting it was decided that Kinpurnie Hill would be ideal, it was described in the hill walking blurb as a gentle stroll…..gentle stroll my arse!!

The tower at Kinpurnie sits high on the summit and can be seen for miles around, I’ve driven past it thousands of times in my life but had never been there. So it seemed an ideal operchancity to pay it a visit. The plan was to note shooting places on the way up the hill as a waterfall was mentioned in the online hill walking info. It was a bit of a climb through a wooded area, and there was indeed a couple of decent pretty waterfall bits to explore on the way back down. By the time we had cleared the woods I expected the hill to flatten off a bit into an easy gradient…oh how wrong I was, it got steeper. After a lot of huffing about puffing from us all we eventually got to the top, and I have to say it had a fantastic view…I also have to say that it started to drizzle a bit so we went inside the roofless tower for a little shelter only to find that it was significantly colder inside and not much drier, However like the adventurous intrepid people we were we soldiered on and used natural light inside the tower, which had an amazing green colour of algae all over the stonework. The air was very cold and the wind whistled around inside, Tim and I played tag team shooting with Chrissie so that she did not get too cold.


DSC_9393-Edit Kingpurney DSC_9404-Edit DSC_9415-Edit


After a little while we found the air outside had warmed again once the rain shower had moved on so we did some external shots



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And as is typical for Scotland in September the weather suddenly changed…again! and blue sky came out giving a bit of drama to the scene.

We moved on and started to work our way back using the bits we spotted on the way up.


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And lastly we used the waterfall not far from the end of the walk






If you look at the left of Chrissie in the pool you will see a darker area of water where the depth suddenly plummets down into a large hole in the floor, that was not a part of the pool worth exploring!

Another fab day out, it was good to meet Tim Pile for the first time, we had spoken online and on the phone but it was extra fun to share a shoot. Hopefully we can do it again sometime. Chrissie never fails to deliver and this time was no exception, despite the rain and cold wind.

I did manage to take a couple of landscape shots but let’s not go there, and!……don’t tell anyone!!


Brita Seifert update

Well further to my last post about images being stolen and used without consent I received this email from Brita Seifert…(Google translated to English)

Dear John, I recently used one of your photographs for a drawing. Sorry, I didn´t know, that it is your photo, I found it on facebook a while ago without that any name was mentioned. I used your photo during my drawing lessons to show my students how to set up a drawing and how to add skin tones in pastels and pencils. It is not for sale. Sure I have own photos, own models, but from time to time I also take photographs from other people. Just to get another “handwriting”. Usually I ask before if I can use these works (if I know who was the photographer). I am really sorry that it went so wrong – today I checked your website at Deviant Art and also your privte one – you make excellent works. It is sad, that we get in contact on such a way. In the next couple of weeks I will rebuilt my website, and then only my own works will remain. The website is down anyway, it was hacked today. So a good reason to create a new one. Have a good day, anyway. My best regards Brita Seifert

Now I could pick away at this and show all sorts of flaws in the reasoning and excuses but I feel an apology is an apology and I’m willing take it at face value and let the matter drop.

Also it wasn’t me who hacked her web page.

So has all the hassle and investigation been worth it? well it’s been time consuming but in the end I think it has been worth it, I can understand why artists choose to recreate from a photograph and in a way its flattering to the photographer that an artist thinks the work is worthwhile. However it gets to a stage where it becomes just copying and if you present that copy as your own work then it becomes stealing. The artist has not paid for the model, studio, camera equipment and time….nor have they had to think of the idea in the first place. So the Brita Seifert saga ends here…will there be more thefts from others?..oh yes, without a doubt.


Brita Seifert Art Thief

Recently I’ve had an outbreak of images stolen and I’m sure many photographers do, it’s a risk we take by putting our work online, however my latest theft has been from an artist. Someone who should really know better, an artist that has been working for many years now and to be honest (pun intended) should hang her head in shame.

So who is the artist, her name is Brita Seifert and she has been quite the thief, but let me go back a little in the story. As I said when you get images stolen it tends to make you a little paranoid, yes yes I know… but more than usual. So recently I’ve been checking images more often using the Google image search feature. And up came this image :-

magic of spring


‘The Magic of Spring’ by Brita Seifert



Quite well done I say however its a copy of my image of Rachelle Summers :-


Rachelle Summers

Rachelle Summers

Such a copy is a flagrant breach of Copyright, artist are allowed to copy from photographs for reference purposes but not to copy an entire image. Once I saw this image I emailed Brita and asked her to remind me of the note I had given her for permission to use this image, I received no answer but 5 days later all signs of the painting were gone from her website, Facebook, DA etc etc…..still no answer by email. The daft thing is had she asked to use I would have said yes, I have yet to say no to anyone .

Anyhow during the 5 days of waiting I got to thinking; she has a lot of nudes and models on her site and I wondered how many of them were used from photographs without the photographers permission or awareness. So I started to Google her painting and lo and behold it was amazing how many ‘paintings’ were very close to original photographs. Although in saying that, some weren’t…as you can see she lifted the model and put her in a new setting.


‘The Ritual’ by Brita Seifert

And this this image by French Photographer and Model Elfyah Sne Amok:-


‘Silent Sighing Song’ by Elfyah Sne Amok

Ah but there’s more…much more:-

10346005_872116756148511_6032672542478371637_n‘Cellist’ by Brita Seifert…selling for 1150 euros

and this one by the excellent photographer Erkin Sahin:-


‘Painted Cellist’ by Erkin  Sahin


misery_by_britaseifert-d5kvt1o‘Misery’ by Brita Seifert

From American photographer :-

So_Simple_by_mjranum‘So Simple’ by Marcus J Ranum

And so it goes on, image after image…..none of the photographers I had contacted had given her permission to use the images and were completely unaware of the paintings. These images are scheduled to be on display and sold in Galleries in the Netherlands, I don’t think the Gallery organizers would be best pleased to find out the truth but them I’m guessing, maybe they wont give a damn as long as they sell.

Chrissie Red at Airlie Tower

Yay!…Location hunting with Chrissie, we did our usual…..jumped in the car to see what we could find. I had come across some back roads near the Glens before and had happened upon a very lush wood, I noticed it had a large sunlit gap in the trees and mentally marked it as a place to return to. And so Chrissie and I did, the place isn’t far from the road but its well hidden and very sheltered, Although we didn’t shoot there we wandered round to see what we could find and decided it was best for a spring shoot.

Marble LochIt hard to believe that its hidden from the road but Scotland is full of such places. Not far from here we came across a signpost in the middle of nowhere, it pointed to a graveyard, Chrissie shouted ‘Go there’ as I nearly drove past it.

It turned out to be a very pretty old graveyard with a fantastic view, it was also the start of the walk to AIrlie Tower. Airlie Tower sits on top a hill and can be seen for miles around but I no idea how to get there, until today. There was a map on a billboard and so off we went, it was a bit of a climb but nothing too arduous. We passed one couple coming down the way and there was no-one else it sight. And when we got to the top we took some images.

Airlie Hill

DSC_9234-EditIts quite difficult to get the scale of the tower and its surroundings, we had walked through woods to get there but the area around the tower was moorland.

From the tower we could see a gate in the distance and I thought we could get some images of Chrissie at the gate with the tower in the background, which we did. However the pictures of Chrissie on the gate were so much better.

Gate Vigil


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By this time the weather was starting to get a bit gloomy so we raced down the hill and zoomed back to a cafe called The Joinery in Meigle for coffee and cake. Another fun day out with the ever professional Chrissie Red.