New Kid's Range Goes Live! [Photoshoot]
Posted on September 27 2014
Now, I should know better by this point in my friendship with Elliott (the founder of Wheel Whores), that bringing a camera, means more than just snapping a few shots as our kids play, and we possibly chug on a pitcher of Pimm's. And I do know better.
As a Filmmaker & Photographer, I love what I do, but I’ve generally seen my work as just that, work, and wanted to keep it away from the kids. Whilst photography was merely a hobby when I was a young ‘un, its always been my passion, but I haven’t wanted to bring work home too much and have my little ‘un's overly concerned with image and looking good in front of a camera. Lately the little monsters have taken a lot of interest in the mixture of cameras lying around the garden office (posh shed) - most notably the GoPro’s (no doubt for their small size), and the Yashica medium format camera (as all kids seem to like to play with the heavy expensive stuff - remember the night vision goggles in Jurassic Park?). So the thought of getting some laid back shots of the kids became tempting, and throwing in aforementioned pitcher, and surely we’re winning?
It’s worth mentioning at this stage, that the standard protocol for a Wheel Whores/CGFilm collaborative shoot is loosely as follows:
1) Once the concept has been decided, little to no further planning until arrival on location.
2) Alcohol must be present and consumed heavily.
3) Children (and any form of real responsibility, other than creative instruction), must not be present.
Essentially, its a cluster-fuck of alcohol-induced ideas, some of which work. The primary goal really is to enjoy the whole thing as much as possible, which is why number three is so important on that list.
Now as the father of two young girls, I know full well how much of a handful they can be, at the best of times. Asking them to dress up or perform for you, generally brings the opposite effect - “show Grandma your new ballet dance moves” will quickly bring an early onset of teenager-induced toddler, which seems to quickly spread to the younger sibling, and any surrounding children, and probably adults. We devised a plan of reverse psychology, which quickly backfired, followed by general bribing, which momentarily worked, and then backfired. Someone looked for the Pimm’s.
Thankfully Elliott’s better half Vicki arrived on scene just in time for the sugar to kick in. Unless you have kids, there's no way of explaining the terror you feel when trying to rationalise with a sugar-fuelled child, you just have to pretend its not happening and carry on. The men had their own mini-tantrum until they were allowed to start drinking, and casually starting throwing props in the direction of the kids. Cue music, clean everyone's faces and pour another glass before trying to teach the kids how to Crip Walk to Notorious B.I.G.’s ‘Hypnotize’. #“hah, sicker than your average Poppa”… didn’t go down well, neither did M.I.A.’s ‘Bad Girls’ and the kids seemed to think this was all very inappropriate. The party really got started with the Frozen soundtrack. At this stage i’m starting to think W.C. Fields was onto something when he famously said “never work with children or animals”, this isn’t what I had in mind for Saturday morning.
The problem I found with taking stills of your own kids, are that they’re inexplicably cute in pretty much all of the shots. As a father, every moment of your own kids posing or Throwing Shapes is adorable, even in a shirt that says “Wheel Whores”. Not that I give a fuck about the controversy of that word, my eldest at 6 months old, happily went to nursery in the ever so pretentious Royal Tunbridge Wells, surrounded by kids in UGG boots and Hackett jackets, proudly showing off her Wheel Whores ‘Skeleton' baby grow. And after this shoot, the same (now 3-year old), usually clad in princess dresses and anything pink, wouldn’t take off her ‘I Must Not…' tee for love nor money (or chocolate, ice cream or toys).
We wrapped up the shoot hastily, when the serious whining started (mostly from the adults), with the promise to shoot something again soon, but not too soon. Highlights for me were wheelies popped while wearing the new ‘Low Morals’ baby grow and busting out ballet moves in a 'Whores Hoards’ tee.
The ‘Old Skool College Jacket’ looked sufficiently boss, and would be one of the few items I would ever happily match with my kids as we tear it up on The Pantiles.