DM's, Care Bears and Hypercolour handprints....

Oh, sitting back, sipping my martini, smoking my vogue cigarettes and reminiscing, the "good ole days" I hear myself mutter.  

So without getting too carried away and aging myself another 40 years I shall introduce you to exactly that, the days of old.  

I grew up in the 80's and 90's and was having an excited conversation the other day with a friend about those colour changing t-shirts you used to be able to get.  I had a collection I must admit and loved my pink or purple tie dyed version.  Of course, there were many worn in school and inappropriate hand prints all over the place but they were awesome!  So awesome they seem to have made a slight come back (well OK not really cos I haven't seen any but hey give me a chance here) with American Apparel and Brooklyn Royalty introducing them to the catwalk earlier this year.  Those crazy Americans.

I also remember the mood changing rings or jewelry, the Leg warmers, the Care Bears and Pob - what happened to him!?

However after this hyperactive and animated chin wag I decided to look back at some of the other things we all knew and loved from the 80's and 90's......check it out & start boasting again about how many lace holes you had in your DM's.  Wicked.


Money money Money....

Pricing is always a difficult thing when it comes to Photography and it seems like you may never get it right, or is that just me?!  Anyway, it is hard and having reviewed and reviewed my prices it is time i make a proper plan....something I should have done a while ago!  

Anyway for any of you out there looking for some pricing advise, please see below some of the websites I used and tips I found useful - good luck!

£ - Look at your competition.  Not just within your 'dedicated' skill set or specific photography type but also locally what people are charging and to whom.
£ - Be confident in your pricing.  Start low when less experienced and then you can increase your rates in the future, getting the work and word of mouth marketing is always better.  I have done a fair bit of free or low priced work and from what I have heard, as have other photographers.
£ -
£ -
£ -

Hope this helps!

C x

Those crazy Science Kids......

It's not all lab coats and test tubes you know, get some students involved, push the beer, pizza and all night working to one side, add some fashion, a creative crazy, some science text books, a bit of the ole London Town....mix well and allow to simmer for a few hours and poooff - you have the collaboration which is Carli-Art and Science Studies.
So I will stop talking shite and get on with what I am here for!  The most recent fashion shoot as you may well know is a brief that I was set by some science students who had to create a arty fart project to try and communicate science to the lesser souls.  Well to be honest at the time I didn't really get it and after working together and creating some awesome imagery I thought it only proper like that I learnt a little bit more.  Plus let you guys know what it was all about and maybe make you look at the images a little differently. is the interview with the ladies from Imperial College.  Enjoy........

Ladies, me photographer, you scientists.....interesting combination there. So tell us more about the project and brief you needed to complete?

Yeah, there's an interesting combination of minds here, eh?!
Basically, we're on a masters course in Science Communication to learn how the media works, and how it can be used to get the general public engaged in science.
For this particular project, we had to produce a creative product which reflects on concepts covered in the course. From the beginning, our group wanted to produce something which looked beautiful and professional - and clothes seemed the perfect idea.

After a lot of brainstorming, we designed three outfits representing science in the media. The lab coat customised as a military jacket represents the authority of science. The footy shirt shows the importance of science 'branding'. Our final outfit was a science communication evening dress.

Have you always been creative, I would consider this to be quite a creative way of illustrating science theories?

Louise: Hmm... To be honest, I was probably the least creative out of our team!! None of us had designed clothes before, so it was going to be an ambitious challenge. Not only that, our sewing skills could be much better! But together we generated some wicked ideas and designed three amazing outfits. With the help of London's fabulous range of charity shops, we opted to customize bargains rather than make items from scratch. Luckily, my eye for detail added the finishing touches which helped complete the overall look of the shoot. Despite the shoddy sewing, the pictures still look fantastic and create an extra layer of meaning to the clothes. And all that was down to Carli – cheers hun!!
Jess: think there’s an idea of being ‘creative’ like being ‘scientific’ it’s all pretty relative. The great thing about fashion is people are creative with it everyday by just putting on an outfit. But yes we knew we had to keep things simple as none of us had the skills to really produce a tailored garment. And, for sure, the clothes look much more impressive in the shoot than in real life!

How are you presenting the final images and how does this go towards your course? Are you encouraged to dabble in all kinds of media such as music, video etc......can we safely assume it is not all test tubes and text books?

So, to present everything, we've decided to run the images alongside a satirical fashion magazine article headlined 'ABC guide to selling science'.

A is for 'Authority' image depicts the power, authority and respect that science generates. Any military uniform instantly denotes power and respect for the individual wearing it, and scientists in the image saluting the professor reinforces this authority.

In the B is for 'Branding' set, the images show that science is constantly being used as a brand by advertisers and Government to add value to products.

C is for 'Communication' shows the classic LBD decorated with flowers made from science magazines, various newspapers and tin foil. The corsage moves down the dress to evoke the idea that a journal article as the small beginning of news stories that grow and grow.  In May, everything will be displayed at an exhibition in Imperial College, South Kensington alongside our colleagues' work. There's going to be some interesting stuff there, so pop along!

Quick Fire round to see how much you know about science, fashion and household condiments (i like food!).....

Oh no... Here goes...!! I'm going to try and not use Google...

What's the only letter that doesn't appear on the periodic table?
Lou :After a lot of thinking... J?!
Jess: ummm think I agree J – although can’t help thinking there’s one called Jeranium – but that’s a flower…

A shrimp's heart is in its head, true or false?
TRUE!!! (That was a pub quiz question last week)

Who invented the telephone? (well science and communication kinda!)
Lou: Alexander Bell
Jess: his middle name is Graham

Marmite, lover or hater?
Louise: HATER!!
Jess: LOVER = have it everyday. My blood is black.

Which country uses more mustard than any other in the world?
Louise: I'm torn between two: US (all those burgers and hot dogs) or India (lovely curries). Hmmm, I'm with the Yanks.
Jess: hmmm prob USA BUT think colman’s is definitely the best quality.

When was the first Bra patented?
Lou: 1920?!
Jess : Hmmm think it was post war. 1951…

What percentage of American women do you think have kept a pair of jeans that are too small for them, in the belief that one day, yes one day they will fit into them? 15% - 33% - 57%
Lou: I'm going with 57% as all the ladies in my house have at least two small pairs of jeans in their wardrobes!
Jess: me too – good call Lou. The holy grail of the skinny jeans you’ll fit into one day.

Well I have to say that was a smash and grab interview and I loved doing it, these lovelies are indeed Science fabulous.  Oh.....tune in next week for the correct answers!! 

The Lion, The Witch and hopefully My Wardrobe....

Having paid Afflecks Palace a visit in Manchester this weekend and gaffa taping my credit card to the inside of my bag so there was no risk of me spending any money, (I spent £70 in my head within approximately 47 seconds of being inside) I am swimming in thoughts & fashions of vintage times.  

With musty leather jackets, hand made jewelry with bows the size of your hands, old school sewing machines and recycled shirts made into fancy dresses; the wardrobe from The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe has been brought to life within the imagination of a smiling twenty-something year old who has just spent hours on the internet trying to locate some of the treasures you could also enjoy.  Then only to discover Afflex now have their own site!! 

Check it out:

Shiny foil wrappers and chocolate bunnies....

Easter weekend provides us with plenty of time to do a variety of things, weather it be spending time with the family, chilling out & indulging in 10 pounds of chocolate, working, visiting some sites or running round the garden looking for shiny foil wrappers.  It certainly is nice to have a couple of extra days where you can relax without feeling guilty!  With an abundance of things to do I thought I would leave you with an assortment of events, ideas and tips and tricks.....

Working? Your CS3 tip......
Use the liquify on a large brush & a softness of around 16 to gently tuck in arms and chins.  Use the smaller brush to smooth down the areas.
Use the history brush on 'screen' to lighten images and 'multiply' to darken images.  A lot more effective than the dodge or burn tool and far more controllable.
Rather than turning your images black and white using the black and white option, just desaturate.  The tones are far more vibrant and all those colour changes and curves, levels etc can be done first to maintain control.

Entertainment or going out?  Some things to do.....
Fashion: The Frock Exchange @ The Vibe Bar in Brick Lane - Sunday.  In aid of Breast Cancer and sponsored by Fat Talent.
Art: Dan Graham @ the Lisson Gallery, Bell St London.
TV: Channel 4, 9pm - Come Dine With Me.  (I know, I know, I love this program!)
Music: Spring Bling Hip-Life n Afro Beats Edition, Aristo Wine Bar, Streatham London.  10pm -4am. 

Needing Chocolate? Pay these a visit....
Easter Egg Hunt @ Stowe Landscape Gardens, Buckinghamshire.  13th April 10am - 4pm
Rocky Road Easter Egg - yes please!! Visit
Writing a letter, want to print it in chocolate!!

Have fun ladies and Gents!

Paper Dolls & Haberdashery.....

I have been thinking about future fashion shoots and starting to jot down ideas and come up with budgets (BIG part of this one considering my current financial crisis) and cannot seem to shake the ideas of mannequins, puppets or paper dolls out of my head.  

I had a paper doll when I was younger and remember spending a large amount of my time dressing it and not just using the clothes they supplied you in the packs but making my own out of paper and bits of random card or string, buttons and other haberdashery that I found I could get my kid like mits on.  With this in mind and the fact I came across a 'colour me in' dress posted somewhere on the internet earlier in the week, I did another infamous google images search and came across some quite interesting piccies of inspiration......

Fan pages & Facebook....

Getting to grips with the new Facebook has been an interesting and somewhat frustrating experience but I now have a FB Fan page and would love as many of you to join as possible.  Like the blog you are subjected to random ramblings but you are also benefitting from networking opportunities, tips and tricks, interviews with other photographers and industry buffs, sneak previews of imagery and also exclusive discounts!  I have a 'gift' in the pipeline actually which I am hoping will encourage some support from good people like yourselves.

Anyway, if you would like to be a fan or just have a nosey then please take a look @

Sleep depravation....

I am tired.  Really tired.  Think I may also be coming down with a cold which is great news considering I have a weekend planned in Manchester but moan not I hear you cry....for lack of sleep can create great things. 

Actually I often find I do my best creative thinking when seriously tired or when its really late, must be when all the real craziness creeps out and I let it overflow slightly.

Anyway, thinking about lack of sleep gets me onto one of my fave images called 'Insomnia' by photographer Jeff Wall.  Just something to get that brain ticking.

Handbag Heaven.....

So in a bid to break up my day of marketing & finances (mahusive yawn!) I went on a mission looking for Handbags.....of course all of which I have no chance of purchasing as they are somewhere 200 miles away from my budget.  Nice to internet window shop though and here they are all lovely and shiny for you to ogle at too!  Enjoy.

(Details of all of these lovely handbags can be found on

Every cloud.....

This weekend was meant to be a girls one, filled with fancy eateries, cocktails, a few too many glasses of wine & some good giggles.  Unfortunately the weekend has had to be cancelled so I found myself with some time to do some marketing......much needed yet still something I seem to put off.  "Sorry darling, is that the bathroom that needs cleaning, I'll be right there."  The taps have never looked so shiny.

Anyway it got me thinking about where I turn for help and little hints and tips I pick up along the way and I imagined, where other people trying to get into the photo biz may struggle or also need advise.  Now I have given some of this stuff before but never hurts to recap, some may seem obvious, really obvious but hey....I missed em so you never know, you might too.
  • Keep good records.  This includes everything coming in and out.  Believe me when you come to do your expenses or taxes it will save literally days of looking under the bed for receipts or having to fill in bloody excel spreadsheets with info.  It also helps you to see really how much money you are spending and more importantly, making!
  • Have a database of contacts.  Record as much info as possible, where they got your name from, jobs you have done for them, any comments or feedback they gave you.  This will help with future client targeting.
  • Look out for marketing events or workshops that offer you advise on business.  In the UK Business Link offer a great range; available online for your own study or held in various local venues.
  • Share your knowledge.  People love giving advise and others like receiving it.  Share what you know and it is amazing the things you learn in return.
  • Speak to other photographers or artists in your field.  Ask for help, seriously people are a lot nicer than you think.
  • Get a mentor.  I asked for a lot of help when i first started and still do.  I have a few people who I turn to for different advise.  Get involved with a local mentor group or agency or really make good contacts within the industry and don't be afraid to ask for advise & tips.  Although there are various government agencies offering business mentors which are excellent, often having a friend or someone you know in the same field as you is even better as the advise is far more bespoke and personal to you or your situation.
  • Write a marketing plan!! I never really wrote one I just collected post-it notes of ideas!  I am in the process of writing a marketing plan @ the moment and man it is hard, but I think it will help me gain focus.  I am also constructing a timeline and planner of what I will do and when.  Plus, I am setting myself a budget - dear Lord I always had trouble with those!
  • Shout about yourself.  Don't be worried about letting people know what you do, where you intend on getting and also where you are struggling.  You just never know how people can help you.
  • Offer help to others.  All good deeds are returned and the knowledge you share with others is just one way of creating a great supportive community around you.
  • Look at community events and how you can offer your services to the community or a cause and not only help them but bring exposure to your brand.
  • Think carefully about starting your business.  Get Advise.  I got bits and pieces but never really went to any workshops or had a plan in place, it just kind of happened.  It feels a little unstructured now and I am positive that if I had of done it properly then I would just be happier about what I am doing now and my goals for the next year.  Plus I would know how to continue the business from previous customers, the wave of new business only lasts so long.  Extending those offers and keeping customers returning or recommending even more customers is essential practice i should have learnt more about earlier!