Joining the Circus (Flora)
“To run off and join the circus means to slough off responsibility, to return to childhood, to leave the confines of one’s community and set off for parts unknown." - E.E. Cummings (no relation)
A perk of my profession, is that we get to enter worlds that we would normally have to buy a ticket to see. We get the whole experience from the inside. We become members of the tribe for a day.
CIRCUS FLORA https://circusflora.org/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CircusFlora/ INSTAGRAM : https://www.instagram.com/circusflora/?hl=en
A Theater Company, specializing in one-ring circus production, based on the focused energy of modern and traditional circus arts. They create a truly American circus, with a narrative that engages audience members personally and emotionally, and physical feats that are inspirational.
Tickets for April/May 2018 https://circusflora.org/case-of-the-missing-bellhop/
I have wanted to shoot w/ a “real” circus setting for sometime. Circus Flora is a one-ring circus based in St. Louis, MO, that fuses the energy of “modern and traditional circus arts”. Their traditional style was what I wanted to play with and explore.
A true procrastinator, I waited till the circus was already performing before I tried to put together my project. On a whim, a friend of mine’s wife worked for Circus Flora and was able to connect me with powers that be. I really didn’t have a full plan. I just knew that I wanted to cross fashion w/ circus. With expectations of being allowed to maybe walk the set with a model and small crew, I presented my request. What I received knocked me over. Not only would we be allowed in, but if we chose to enter on their off day, they would ask several performers if they would participate. Are ya kidding me?
The day of the shoot was a miraculous sunny and cool day in June. Just a day before it had been 97°, humid and hazy. This was a freak of nature, literally.
We had power sources to use on site, but just the same we used a combination of electric and battery powered lights. I used mix of my Broncolor Move 1200 kit (w/ two heads), Broncolor Para 220, 7’ Photoflex Octodome and an Elinchrom Rotalux Softbox Octa 53” (that I had modified to fit a Broncolor pack). The wind picked up around 9am and tossed the Para around. We striked it before any damage could occur. Because of the plentiful sunlight, we got away with the Elinchrom for most of the fill light and the Octodome as an edge or back light.
Each model and performer were scheduled for two hour windows. As we shot through one scenario, the next group was in h&m.
Photography / Art Direction / Producer - Brian Cummings briancummings.com
Production - Amanda Björnson
Assist - Tim Humphreys / Jon Slavkin DIT - Douglas Garfield
Stylist - Michael Drummond michaeldrummond.net/ ("special thanks” to Opera Theatre of Saint Louis & Bonnie Kruger)
H&M - Makeup: Renee / Hair - Amanda Björnson stlouismakeupartist.com
Retouching - Nightowl/Jurij Grdadolnik http://nightowl-studio.com/
Mother Management, LLC - Ashley James
West Model Management - Julienne Edwards, Julia Rockwood, Dodge Dulap, Josie Bartont
Tino Wallenda (tight wire)
Kyle Driggs (juggler)
Cecil MacKinnon “YoYo the Narrator” (Theater Director)
Adrian Poema & Adrian Poema Jr. (Acrobats)
Dos Passos (Rooster)
SPECIAL THANK YOU
Jack Marsh - Artistic Director
Aurelia Wallenda-Zoppe' - Company Manager
#broncolor #broncolormove1200 #broncolorpara220 #canon1dxmii #briancummings #circusflora