Photography and Text by Emily Ulrich, Copyright 2016
“Casting” takes a raw and visceral approach to the otherwise classic headshot, using harsh light sources and deep shadows to accentuate body’s natural contours. For this shoot, I used a combination of models both brought onsite from Mainline Models a local modeling agency, and from my friend group. I ask you one question: which are the models, and which are my friends? My motivation driving this casting choice was to seamlessly integrate conventional and nonconventional notions of what a model is, and in doing so, force larger questions into consciousness. People tend to fetishize models as society’s physical standard-bearers; however, this series of pictures asks people to do just the opposite and appreciate the natural beauty of those around them.
In preparing for the shoot, I gave very minimal instructions for hair and makeup. Per my request, models wore (at max) foundation and bronzer and kept their hair natural. I wanted to highlight as authentically as possible, and without distraction, the unique features which distinguishes them from their peers. My only reason for advising basic foundation as opposed to advising they come bare faced, was the intensity of the light and for fear that their skin would be too dewy as a result. For the female models, I requested a sleeveless top to forge a naked effect.
About The Author: Emily Ulrich is a senior enrolled in the Wharton Business School, University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2017.